Formative Assessment Strategies for your Classroom

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Check Out the New Blog Formative assessment strategies are similar to standard-based learning strategies and can fulfill both areas of instructional and learning support as well as assessment. Some of the strategies are:

  • Preassess students.

(Every pretest should be simple and to the point. Give a test that tells you only what the student needs to know.)

  • Share learning goals with students.

(Re-write your curriculum standards/goals/objectives into terminology understandable by your students.)

  • Share or co-create learning criteria with students.

(Solicit student input. They’ll tell you how to rewrite terminiology into their terms.)

  • Employ quality classroom discourse and questioning.

(Encourage students to provide feedback in the form of debates, with students having to prove that they are correct and why they are correct.)

  • Use rich and challenging tasks that elicit students’ responses.
  • Identify the gap between where the students are now and the desired standard goal.

(The best method would be to create a chart in the front of the classroom and identify the learning target. Discuss this daily with students, specifically where they are in comparison to where they need to be.)

  • Provide feedback that helps students identify how to improve.

(If you use formative assessments correctly, short meetings will be a regular component in your classroom. Explain to students what they need to do to improve and put the explanation in their terms. Remember you need to be very simple, so as to make this easy for students, because if it is difficult, they’re less likely to respond.)

  • Use self-assessment and peer assessment.

(An excellent tool for this would be a KWL chart. Allow students to tell you: 1) what they know; 2) what they want to know; and 3) what they have learned.)

  • Provide students with opportunities to close the gap between current and desired performance.

(Refer back to the chart in the front of the classroom – how you identify the learning targets to the students. If a student does not meet the learning target, how are you going to assist the student in meeting the target? Don’t provide irrelevant extra credit activities. Give “learning addendums” or learning activities that re-enforce the standards and targets, and are not just work that means nothing at the end of the day.)

  • Celebrate learning progressions.

(Celebrate. This can be as simple as a star beside the students’ names, a simple positive note on a paper like “Great Job!,” or a pizza party. You don’t have to make the celebration a bank breaker, just a celebration that shows students you care and that you recognize their growth.)

What are some of the formative assessment strategies that you use in your classroom to motivate students?

From Professional Learning Board’s online continuing education course for teachers: Formative Assessment

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