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Showing posts with label assessment. Show all posts
Showing posts with label assessment. Show all posts

How am I Doing?

Every "report card" time, kids will undoubtedly ask, "how am I doing?"

Kids often ask, "How am I doing," especially around report card time. Here are some suggestions for making sure the children KNOW how they're doing!

Of course, it's great that they care about their achievement, but seriously, they're in school every day doing the work. They're in class, participating and engaging in work all the time. So, shouldn't they already know how they're doing?

Kids often ask, "How am I doing," especially around report card time. Here are some suggestions for making sure the children KNOW how they're doing!


What do you think? Yes, report cards are all about reporting to their parents. They have a right to know how their child is doing. They see the children through homework, encourage them to do well, and want to know about their child's successes! 

This post isn't about report cards and reporting to parents.

It's about giving feedback to the children every single day!

Brain research tells us that frequent feedback is essential to learning. 

A good place to start is making sure every child knows their strengths!

Kids often ask, "How am I doing," especially around report card time. Here are some suggestions for making sure the children KNOW how they're doing!
 
I believe in encouraging children every time you see them doing something right. It could be ANYTHING they do well. Here are some examples:
  • staying organized
  • smiling at classmates
  • participating in group discussions
  • greeting classmates when they arrive
  • positive attitude
  • listening
  • following directions
  • getting to work right away
  • following rules
  • working independently
  • staying focused
  • helping classmates
  • helping teacher 
  • putting forth effort
  • showing growth

Kids often ask, "How am I doing," especially around report card time. Here are some suggestions for making sure the children KNOW how they're doing!

In fact, this information should be made public. Everyone in the class should know who is good at knowing math facts, and who is good at following directions. All students should know who they can turn to for figuring out an unknown word, solving a math problem, where to find extra supplies, or sketching a cat for their journal. This is all part of the teamwork. And I'm sure you'll agree, all children have strengths!

Kids often ask, "How am I doing," especially around report card time. Here are some suggestions for making sure the children KNOW how they're doing!

All children also have areas that need improvement, don't they? The only way they will improve in these areas is if they are aware of their weaknesses and put in the effort to improve them. I prefer to think of these as "skills the child is working on," rather than weaknesses. It's just a bit kinder!

Kids often ask, "How am I doing," especially around report card time. Here are some suggestions for making sure the children KNOW how they're doing!

Although the whole world should know the strengths of your students, the opposite is most definitely NOT true!

Kids often ask, "How am I doing," especially around report card time. Here are some suggestions for making sure the children KNOW how they're doing!

 

I schedule meetings with individuals every so often. How do I find the time? I meet with individuals instead of reading groups for a couple of days. (See THIS POST to see how I organize this!) I spend a few minutes with each child, and honestly, those few minutes make a world of difference and are totally worth missing a reading group or two!

Kids often ask, "How am I doing," especially around report card time. Here are some suggestions for making sure the children KNOW how they're doing!

I use a 2-1-1 strategy! I start with 2 statements about what the child is doing well. These can be about ANYTHING the child is doing in school, as long as it's honest praise. (See THIS POST about giving honest feedback!) 

After the happy celebration, I mention (carefully) one thing the child needs to work on. They usually know, and agree they need to work on this. 

Wanting to leave the conversation with a positive note, I'll mention one more thing the child does well. This doesn't have to be academic, just a little something to keep the conversation upbeat. Quite often, it's something like, "I'm glad you're in my class!"

Kids often ask, "How am I doing," especially around report card time. Here are some suggestions for making sure the children KNOW how they're doing!

You've probably already spent a lot of time building relationships with your students, and these personal conversations should simply amplify these relationships. Of course, make sure it ends with a smile!

How do you keep the children informed about their progress?

Kids often ask, "How am I doing," especially around report card time. Here are some suggestions for making sure the children KNOW how they're doing!



Three Purposes for Boom Learning Digital Task Cards

Children (and teachers) absolutely LOVE Boom Learning Digital Task Cards.

Did you realize there are different ways to use them?

Three Purposes for Boom Learning Digital Task Cards: Did you realize there are different ways to use these digital cards? Here are three ways. Can you think of more?

1. Skills Practice

Three Purposes for Boom Learning Digital Task Cards: Did you realize there are different ways to use these digital cards? Here are three ways. Can you think of more?


Skills practice is probably the most popular use of Boom Learning cards. Since Boom Cards can be used on tablets, phones, laptops, or desktops, it's easy to just send a link for the children to practice their skills at home, during center time, or for independent work. 
 

I've made some little videos so you can see the Boom Cards in action:

This first video is an example of part of my fact fluency system. There are 8 different levels for the children to master, and two review levels. 

This is Level 1 Addition and Subtraction:  the +1 families

(This one is a freebie!)


Here's an example of the multiplication and division fact fluency system:

Level 5 Multiplication and Division the X9 families


2. Assessment

Three Purposes for Boom Learning Digital Task Cards: Did you realize there are different ways to use these digital cards? Here are three ways. Can you think of more?

Assessment is a great use of the Boom Cards as well! With a paid membership to Boom Learning, teachers can see the records of everything their students have done while on Boom Learning. They can see which questions students got right or wrong, how long the student took on that question, and a record of how many times the student has used that deck. It's a wealth of information about the students, and it's amazingly easy to use!

The above fact fluency decks can be used for assessment as well as practice. I watch the scores of the children, and when they are close to 100% accuracy, we have a celebration and they move on to the next level. 

Assessment can have several purposes within itself! A teacher might want to assess students before a lesson or unit, in order to see what the students know. 

This one will let you know what your students know about figurative language.

Figurative Language Boom Learning Digital Task Cards

 

A teacher might want to do a personality assessment at the beginning of the school year, then again at various points through the year to see how the student grows and changes. Plus, they love talking (writing) about themselves!

Who Am I? Get to Know Your Students Boom Learning Task Cards


Here's a way to assess what your students know about germs!

Germs: Viruses and Bacteria Boom Learning Task Cards


 3. Exploration and Enrichment

Three Purposes for Boom Learning Digital Task Cards: Did you realize there are different ways to use these digital cards? Here are three ways. Can you think of more?

Enrichment and Exploration are my favorite purpose for Boom Learning cards! These cards are perfect for the students who have mastered the basic information and are ready to learn more. They can be assigned a deck on a topic they're not familiar with, and explore. The best part? They can do the same deck over and over, and their responses should become more and more accurate! (Teachers can keep an eye on this, and if they're not becoming more accurate, a conversation needs to take place with this student, of course!)


There are plenty of this type of Boom Learning decks. Here are a couple:

 Famous Black Americans: Who Said This?


I have a whole series of Social Studies and Science vocabulary builders. Check out this video of  

City, Country, or Candy


I have plenty more Boom Learning decks, which you can find HERE.

How do you use your Boom cards? 

Do you have other purposes for them?


Three Purposes for Boom Learning Digital Task Cards: Did you realize there are different ways to use these digital cards? Here are three ways. Can you think of more?



Dabbling in DIBELS

Last week I went to a two day training period for DIBELS Next.  DIBELS Next is an assessment program for early readers.  It stands for Dynamic Indicators of Basic Early Literacy Skills. 

We learned how to deliver every part of the test for every level.  Typically the assessment is given 3 times a year:  the beginning, the middle, and the end.  Different levels are given different parts of the test.   Teachers are able to Progress Monitor children who don't meet benchmarks.  The best part?  All the materials are available online for free.

The tough part?  It takes about 10 minutes per child at my level.  The tests are given individually.  The tricky part is finding time to do this while keeping up with all our classroom responsibilities. 

But it's a wealth of information!  This is the first time in years our school district has used any kind of assessment that is standardized.  The older children have the state mandated tests, starting in third grade, and we've had the unit tests from the reading program we use.  DIBELS will be giving us specific information concerning what our students know (or don't know) about reading.

Why is this good?  Because it tells us specifically what we need to teach the children!  (I suspect you already knew this!)  With all the testing we've been forced to do over the past few years, it's a pleasure to have an assessment tool that helps us figure out what we need to do. 

DIBELS doesn't necessarily tell us what to do to raise the scores, but there are tons of resources,  many of which we explored through the 2 day training. 

So, I've started Dabbling in DIBELS.  During the last couple of days, I've Dibbled 4 of my students.  It's a little late for the beginning of the year baseline, and a little early for the midyear assessment, but I'm just practicing giving the test.  (And getting information about my kids!)  Honestly, there's not really anything I didn't already know about these kids, but it's valid information that I can bring up at meetings and share with parents. 


So far I'm happy dabbling in DIBELS!  Whatever keeps them reading!

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