Archive for the 'Standard' Category

Students React to Digital Badges: Pros, Cons and Interesting

 

ISTE 2016

By Harry Grover Tuttle, Ed. D.

College World Language Students’ Preferences

Digital Badges – 52%        Paper Certificates – 48%

World Language: Can-Do Digital Badges
Digital Badges Pro-
– Breaks down proficiency more
– Shows all badges at once
– Is more attractive
– Is more appropriate since we use Schoology
– Avoids misplacing paper certificates

Con – Prefer Paper Certificates
– Looks more official / credibile
– Has a physical touch
– Is easier for me, limited tech at home
– Is easier to read the proficiency name
– Can have it when the course / Schoology ends
– Can see a pile of my certificates
– Can easily show it to others
– Can post it on frig / decorate my folder with it

Advantage of Both:
– Tells me my actual speaking skill, not my grade with homework,etc.
– Shows my  progress in speaking (still have lots to do)

Interesting (Some issues) : Teacher
– Uses badge to cover each individual proficiency or to cover categories of proficiencies. (i.e. 100 proficiencies or 12 categories)
– Makes badge names short but meaningful (not I.A.2)
– Determines level of proficiency for badge (80%, 90%, 100%)
– Needs student proficiency demonstraton time
– Needs time to award badge

Digital Badges: Naming the Badge

Once teachers have selected what learning and what digital badges (individual or category badges; see previous blog), the teachers encounter another decision. What will they name each badge? Will they use the full name of the Common Core Standard or the national proficiency? For English, under “Speaking and Listening,”will they write out SL.2 “Integrate and evaluate information presented in diverse media and formats, including visually, quantitatively, and orally” as the badge name? Will they use an abbreviated word name such as “eval media”? Or will the teachers use a number code such as SL2 or SL2media? Teachers may enter the full badge name in a badge program but how long will the actual name be when displayed on the screen with other badge names? For example, if a badge program lists all the badge names going across the screen, then each badge name may only show the first seven characters. Are the students familar enough with the abbreviated standard or proficiency name that they recognize it and know what it means when they see it? If the students cannot recognize the name of the badge learning, then the badge program is not effective for them.

Each badge name needs to be unique. If more than one standard or proficiency addresses the same or very similar topic, then the badge names have to distinguish between the two. In the NCSSFL-ACTFL (Modern Language) proficiencies, a Novice Low proficiency states “I can introduce myself to someone. I can tell someone my name.” while a Novice Mid proficiency states “I can introduce myself and provide some basic personal information.” Teachers will name each badge so that the difference is obvious to the students

What digital badge names will you use?

Digital Badges: Individual or Categorized Learning Badges?

The idea of digital badges sounds appealing for the digital children in classes. As teachers start thinking about digital badges, they have to figure out what badges will be awarded. The teachers can award social or academic badges. If teachers decide to use academic badges, then the teachers may base their badges on the Common Core Standards or other international proficiencies. That decision leads to additional questions. How much learning will the students do during the course? How many badges will be awarded during the course? Will the badges represent each individual proficiency or categories of proficiency? For example, in the beginning college semester of Spanish, students will achieve about 80% of the forty eight proficiencies in the Novice Level of the NCSSFL-ACTFL Can-Do Proficiency Statements or the equivalent of thirty nine badges. The semester is fifteen weeks long. Will the teachers group these badges together so that the number of badges gets reduced down to fifteen or fewer categories or will the teachers award thirty nine badges? If the teachers use categories, do the categories represent the same type of learning at the same degree of difficulty? Are the categories chronologically based or can a beginning proficiency category not be achieved until other more advanced categories are learned? For example, the third category of “I can answer a few simple questions” includes the proficiency of “I can respond to who, what, when and where questions”. However, students usually demonstrate proficiency in at least three other supposedly more advanced proficiences before they show proficiency in this beginning proficiency.

How have you selected the the digital badges for the learning in your course?

No Real Destination No Real Learning

I enjoy “talking” with other teachers.  However, I am often amazed at how  they  describe the final learning destination.

A writing teacher may say, “We are doing contrast essays”, a modern language teacher says, “I want my students to speak the language”, a social studies teacher says “My students will be citizens of the world.”  What does each of these mean in a practical sense? How will these teachers know if their  students have reached the final destination  and how well they have done it?  Would another educator be able to identify the  same success?

I have been working in developing some foreign language assessments so that I can quantify the various types of speaking and how well students do on each.  I do not want to say “My students speak the language”  which is a vague concept but to specify what type speaking they do  and how well they do each. Once I can identify what the end learning looks like/sounds like, I can work backward to provide scaffolded  steps to help the students get there at a high level. In addition, I can build in formative assessment to monitor their upward process.

In order for athletes to win, they visualize exactly what they will do; they visualize their success.  Our students need to visualize exactly what they are to do.

How do you identify the end learning for the students so they can become successful at it?  How do they climb the ladder of success in that learning goal?

My  book,  Successful Student Writing Through Formative Assessment, is available through Eye on Education.

Successful Student Writing Through Formative Assessment

My book,  Formative Assessment: Responding to Your Students, is available through Eye on Education.

Reponding to Your Students

Aligning activities and end goal

When a  colleague was teaching a remedial English course, she was told to focus on the creative aspects of writing.   Those beginning college students needed to able to write academic  papers for college, not to write poetry and personal narratives.  They would  become good academic writers by focusing on the standard forms of academic writing  of writing such as contrast and argument papers.

Although this is an extreme example, I wonder how often teachers forget the real purpose of the students’  learning and have their students spend time doing something that does not directly lead to learning that goal.    A question to ask  is “How does this directly and efficiently lead students to being proficient in this skill?”  I remember watching a social studies class where  ninth grade students were coloring in the countries of South America, each country in different color.  The real purpose was to learn where each country was on the map but they spent about a third of the class on coloring.    Locating  countries on a map is a memorization activity so do memorization activities such as study a map with the names shown for  half the countries  and then , see a map without the names and put the names in.  Likewise, in a modern language class, students do not improve in their speaking ability by doing grammar drills. A student can be proficient in grammar but not  be a proficient speaker.  Students become more skillful in speaking as they speak more in class through structured activities.  Likewise, English students do not become better writers by just reading and answering questions about long literary essays.  When educators take students through the writing process with a focus on the specific type of writing, then these students become better writers.

So how does what your students do directly and efficiently lead them  to being proficient in a specific skill?

My  book,  Successful Student Writing Through Formative Assessment, is available through Eye on Education.

Successful Student Writing Through Formative Assessment

My book,  Formative Assessment: Responding to Your Students, is available through Eye on Education.

Reponding to Your Students

Do We Know the Students’ Exact Progress in the Learning Standards At Any Moment?

Every teacher should know at any given moment where their students stand in regard to state standards, state assessments, or even the “final”. We need to focus on our students’ learning progress and how we can help the students to improve from where they are to where we expect them to be. Waiting until the end of the year for students to take a pre-state assessment and then cramming down not-learned concepts make no sense.

When we start with the end in mind (Covey and Understanding by Design), we identify the precise learning we expect of the students and we create assessments that measure not only the end product but the many steps in their progress toward the learning. These mini-formative assessments help us to know at any moment where our students stand in terms of the end assessment. By using a technology as simple as a spreadsheet, teachers can keep track of their students’ formative assessments, give students new strategies to use to be successful, and, after much practice, re-assess the students to see growth.  Student learning is about continual growth toward the end learning.  If we want students to achieve the end learning goal, we need to constantly assess their progress and provide new strategies for success.

Do you know where your students’ exact progress right now in your course toward the state standard or assessment?

My new book,  Successful Student Writing Through Formative Assessment, is available through Eye on Education.

Successful Student Writing Through Formative Assessment

My book, Formative Assessment: Responding to Your Students, is available through Eye on Education.

Reponding to Your Students

Continuous Assessment

The British have used the term continuous assessment or assessment for learning for many years.  I like the term continuous assessment since it implies that students are continually being monitored and given feedback to improve. Continuous assessment differs from the “unit” test or “every five week” tests that do not provide feedback directly to the students and that do not occur on a daily or weekly basis  in the classroom. Continuous assessment changes our approach to the classroom; we spend more time observing students for their learning progress and giving them new strategies rather  than “teaching”.  We measure our success by how successful the students are as they learn  the essential goals of our course. We know that students will improve throughout the year and we reward that growth instead of counting their early attempts (such as the first essay of the year) equally with their final achievements. Their grades represent continuous improvement.  Continuous assessment returns us to our initial reason for being teachers; our students show that they now have the profound learning in our subject that we wanted to share with them.

My new book,  Successful Student Writing Through Formative Assessment, is available through Eye on Education.

Successful Student Writing Through Formative Assessment

My book, Formative Assessment: Responding to Your Students, is available through Eye on Education.

Reponding to Your Students

Learning as dancing

One of my student compared being a student to learning to dance with someone. You have to figure out where the person is taking you. You learn how the other person moves.  You learn how to respond.  You learn the boundaries.

Often students spend much of a class in figuring out this dance. They may not know the “real” course goals. They may not know how they will be assessed. They may not know how they are to complete assignments (the procedures and expectations). They do not know the limits (They have not seen an exemplar).  They step on many toes in doing this dance; they stumble.  We need to step back and show them the “secrets” of our dance so that they can spend time dancing instead of trying to figure out the dance. Let’s scaffold our class for success in each part of the dance so that the students can do a joyful dance of learning!

My book, Formative Assessment: Responding to Students, is available through Eye-on-Education.

Reponding to Your Students

School Awards For Teachers

I recently  attended a college’s award ceremony for faculty and staff.  I was impressed with all the categories of awards.

I’ve made up some awards that I would like schools to give. These awards will not be given to just one teacher but to any teacher who does any of the following:

Focus their students’ learning on the standards

Spend more working with students than lecturing

Diagnose students’  learning problems instead of just giving grades

Give specific feedback that actually help the students to move forward in their learning

Keep cumulative records of students’ strengths and learning gaps in a specific learning goal

Celebrate their students’ standards-based learning successes

Transform academic learning  into real world learning

Invite parents and other experts in the classroom (physically or virtually)  to share their wisdom about a learning goal

Involve the students in meaningful community or global projects that truly make a difference in other students’ lives.

Empower students to feel that they are capable of being successful

Share the learning goal, assessments, and success strategies with other teachers

What other awards would you like to schools to give?

Organic Learning With Technology or Inorganic Learning?

I drove past a farmer’s stand that proudly proclaimed itself as organic. I laughed. When I was growing up on a farm, everything was organic. Cows produced the fertilizer for the fields.

I wonder if we have made changes to make the learning process less organic. Have we gone to using technologies in which that might reduce learning? Do our PowerPoints truly energize the learners into deeper learning or do the PowerPoints put them to sleep? Does the time we have the students spend on creating a podcast really reflect in-depth learning about the course’s standard or does the time reflect surface only learning over multiple days? Do our students spend time in responding to others in a blog when the other people do not read their comments? Do our students spend time in creating fancy projects that include many visuals when the visuals do not add more meaning to the project? Do we have students create the same information on a wiki that is presently available in another location? Do we have students virtually visit a location (like a zoo) without having them learn critical standards information?

Have we used technology to interfere with students’ learning instead of helping them to grow in-depth and comprehensively in the standards? How organic is your classroom or have you covered it with harmful fertilizers?

For any one who is interested in implementing formative assessment in the classroom, my book, Formative Assessment: Responding to Students is available through Eye-on-Education

Big Things (Learning) First

As I was packing the car yesterday, I realized that I was following the way my father packed the car  He always packed the big things first and then worked the little things around the big things.

I wonder how often we pack the big ideas, the major concepts in the standard, first with students. Do we lead off the unit with telling them about the standard? Do we instruct them directly on the big ideas?  Do we give them activities that clearly focus on the big ideas? Do we assess them on the big ideas?

I remember watching a teacher who did a half period introductory activity to the unit. The activity was engaging.  However, it did not deal with the big ideas of the unit but with a very minor point.

Do you pack the big ideas first with your students?

Students Create Own Class Final Based on Portfolio

In my speech class, I have given my students a choice of which of the nine speeches that they have already done that they wanted  on their final. I told them that the final had to consist of  three of the speeches that they had given;during the final they would drastically improve on the already given speeches.

I listened as they talked about which speeches they thought would most benefit them. They talked about the portfolio that they have to create as a requirement of the college.  They thought of which speeches would most impress a future employer. They all agreed that the “Tell Me About Yourself” interview question speech was absolutely critical.  They next agreed on the Persuasion speech since it shows how they can convince others of their ideas. Finally, they decided that they would do an Information speech since often in work, they give information to others.  Most of them had already done these speeches on areas in their future career.

Their discussion revealed much about their understanding of their future careers,  their showcasing themselves during an interview, and their analyzing the various speeches we had done.

Do you have your students have input into their final? What criteria is used to select material for the final?  Does it serve a “greater purpose”?

Finals Do Not Reflect Standards

How well does your final match up with your standards and particularly those standards which you identified as being critical for the course?

A colleague shared with me  a  course final which focuses on a topic not mentioned in the course proficiencies (standards).   Since it was her first time in teaching the course, she had not studied the final.  When she did, she wondered where it came from.  She went back through the course proficiencies again and still could not find the topic.  Then she went to the textbook and searched it for the topic; it was not there. Someone had decided that the final had to be a certain topic which was neither in the standards nor the textbook.

How well does your final match up with the specified standards and the high level of thinking in those standards?  Does your final measure all the standards and all of their parts?  Does it measure some of the standards and even just some of those learning goals?

Portfolio -Real Reflections or Surface Ones?

I’m still thinking about the conversation with a person about portfolios at her college. She says that the students are helped in their reflections since the college provides a worksheet. When she showed me the worksheet which was in thin columns – it asked for the evidence, what they thought was good and what improvements they can think of.

I realized that students have to have very small ideas to fit in the columns. Students were not asked what they had learned about the standard from their college experiences. They were encouraged to think of changes but without identifying what they had learned, I do not know how they could tell what they still needed to learn or change. They did not have the standard in front of them to identify which parts that have had success with and which parts they still needed to work on.

Do your students’ portfolio reflections represent in-depth thinking or surface comments?

Learning from a Young Child

I was watching my 4 year old nephew and niece (twins) as they were playing, watching tv, drawing and having fun.  My niece drew scribbles and then told me a story about the scribbles.  Her parents obviously read to them. She did  sentences such as   “The cow goes to the party.  The horse goes to the party.  The dog goes to the party. They have fun.”

I thought of how much her parents read to her and of how interesting the story was that she wanted to hear it over and over again. Her parents have encouraged her to tell stories.

I wonder how we present interesting material to our students so that they want to pay attention to it, how we present the same information in different ways to them , how we expect them to learn big skills, and how we encourage them to tell us their learning stories.

Or do we read to them our book that does not interest them and only expect them to remember obscure details from the story instead of achieving big skills?

Giving Students’ learning Choices Through Technology

I like to rent Redbox movies, those red kiosco in grocery stores and McDonalds. I can preview the available titles from the comfort of my home; I can take my time to decide which movie I want. I can even rent the movie online so that it is ready for me when I get to the store. I can return it to any Redbox.

I wonder what school would be like if we could have more options and choices available to students. Sure all students have to learn the same basic standards. How much choice do we give the students in how they go about doing it? Do we provide lectures, demonstrations, guided instructions, interactive activities, group activities, and self-tests in various digital formats for them? By using technology we can have many different forms of learning the standard available to the students. What, if instead of lock stepping the class in terms of the students’ learning, we freed up the class to make their own choices? They can select in what order or format to see/hear/experience the learning.

We can start small with podcasts, emovies, and interactive Power Points as we build up our library. Imagine if a department (all English teachers in 9th grade) worked together to create these resources. Then we as teachers could really be guides on the side instead of the sage on the stage. We can spend time in providing formative feedback to students in one-on-one and small groups instead of being infront of the room “teaching”. When students experience a learning gap, we can refer them to a specific technology application that focuses on that learning gap. We can give more help to those who need one-on-one feedback.

Let’s use technology to help us better guide students in their learning.

Gradebook Grades or Standards-Based Grading

A teacher was showing me how well her students were doing. She showed me from her electronic gradebook their high grades in homework, class participation, and quizzes. However, when I asked her how well they were doing in the standards for her course, she gave me a puzzled look. She repeated that her students did well on homework and quizzes. I rephrased my question and asked her which particular standards did each homework and each quiz focus on. She said they assessed the book’s chapters.

I showed her how she could change her grading to reflect the standards. She could create new categories such as S1 (standard 1), S2 (standard 2), etc. Instead of focusing on all the homework, she could select which part of the homework focused on Standard 1 and then record that grade under Standard 1. Likewise, she could modify her quizzes so that each quiz focuses on one standard so instead of a quiz grade she could give a standard grade. Now her students could see how well they were progressing in the standard instead of how well they did on quizzes, participation, and homework. She could know how well they were progressing in the important standards rather than the textbook chapters.

Do you give grades or do you give standards-based grades through your electronic gradebook?

Standards Tagging To Benefit Students or Just an Exercise?

The college where I work wants each activity in the class calendar to be labeled with one of the official course outcomes (standards).

I applaud the effort in asking instructors to think about how what they are doing supports the outcomes. However, I also realize that most instructors just put numbers in so that each activity has a number. They do not change what the activity is; they just put a label on each activity. The instructors do not change what they do in the classroom.

Furthermore, there is no common course assessment so, in fact, each instructor gives whatever type of final covering whatever type of content. Until we give common course assessments there is no real outcomes based (or standards-based) learning.

Students do not benefit from such pseudo-standardizing of courses.

Learning goals curriculum or textbook illogic

I’ve been examining a writing/grammar textbook and I’ve noticed that there seems to be no logical learning flow in the writing patterns that students do.   When we show students that one type of writing is similar to another type, they can more easily make the transition.  For example, if students have done a narrative writing, they can easily transition to process writing.  Both types require a time line or sequence of events. Both types usually have the events in a chronological order.

How do you arrange your learning goals so that students transition from one type of learning to a similar type of learning?

Quickly Find Power Points for a Learning Topic

I do like to visually guide my students through a learning goal by creating Power Points but it takes me a long time to create them.  I’ve been using another method, finding an existing Power Point on that learning goal and then adding my own Power Point  for any missing points or things I want to emphasize.  An easy way to find Power Points is to put the category such as narrative writing in quotations “narrative writing” and add .ppt (the ending for Power Point files) so the search would look like “narrative writing” +.ptt.  A search for a Civil War Power Point would look like “Civil War” +.ppt while a search for a Power Point on the Three Little Pigs would appear as “The Three Little Pigs” +.ppt.

I found that within a few minutes of searching I can usually find a Power Point that captures much of what I want the students to learn. Then I create a mini-Power Point to add any additional information and I call it the topic plus “more” such as “NarrativeMore”.  I have cut my creation down drastically and often have a learning tool that is much better than I had thought of.

Identifying Student Learning Success for Them

Do  you have an attitude of “I know quality when I see it” for assessing student work  or do you have an attitude of “I insure that my students know what quality looks like” when assessing student work?

Have you posted exemplars to the class wiki/blog?  Have you  had students rework the rubric (or whatever  assessment tool) so that it is completely understandable to them? (A great wiki collaboration learning experience). Have your class created a rubric or assessment tool to assess student work through using the Smartboard?

How do you use technology to help students understand the quality that is expected of them in their standards-based learning?

Reporting back to students on their standards progress

How often do you report back to the students on their standards-based progress? I’m not referring to their grades which probably have little to do with standards learning.  How often do you let them know which standards’ goals they have achieved and which they have yet to achieve?  How often do you inform them of what they specifically can do to be more successful in the standard’s goals?

Technology even as simple as a digital spreadsheet can be a great tool for keeping track of students’ progress through the goals of a standard and keeping the students informed.

Online Diagnostic Testing

As teachers we have so much to do in a class. When we can enlist the help of technology, we gladly welcome such help. A teacher could create online diagnostic tests and provide some remediation or the teacher could use a program such as MyWritingLab by Pearson. Such a program gives numerous diagnostic tests, provides the answers to each question and even has a video (mostly text) to help explain the answers. Students can retake the tests until they have shown proficiency. When an online program can help with lower skills, then we can concentrate on helping our students with higher level thinking skills.

What diagnostic or online computer programs does your school use? What is your reaction? What does it do well? How could it help you more?

A quick feedback system

Formative Assessment Spreadsheet for Speech Class

As I have been integrating more formative assessments into my classes, I keep on trying to simply the process. I realize that I can create a simple form in my Oral Presentations (Speech) class that will enable me to focus more on student improvement. I’ll have a row of the type of speech, the topic, the “rubric score”, the proficient areas, and the areas for improvement in a spreadsheet. Each time a student gives a speech I record the type (information), the topic (dangers of smoking), the score according to the speech rubric, the proficient areas (grabs attention, signals conclusion) and the areas for improvement (slow down, look at audience). I will have students have their own copy where they write down their strengths and areas for improvement. After each speech, we’ll both complete the form and then I’ll ask the students for their information. We’ll talk about what they can do to improve. The next speech I can see what new proficient areas there are and what areas need improvement. The simple spreadsheet will give me a quick overview of the students’ growth over time on the major requirements of the course (the various speeches). Notice that students usually do a second speech of the same type so they can show major improvements in that type of speech.

How do you simply your observation and diagnosis of students so that you can give specific feedback for improvement?

Class Standards and Finals: Mixed Signals

Do Course Proficiencies match up with course final?

A colleague emailed me a bizarre story. Her college is part of multi-college educational system. She teaches a course that is required for all entering students. All of the colleges have the same outcomes for this course. However, they all have different finals; the finals do not resemble each other in any way. One college requires a research paper; another requires a timed proficiency test and another requires certain assignments. How can a class be outcome or proficiency based and not have the same or very similar final? How can the final not be based on the specific outcomes?

How does your course’s tests and final reflect the specific standards/outcomes/proficiencies? Giving a state exam or benchmark should not be a final in your course but simply be a small sampling of evidence of the outcomes. How strong is your standards-based learning signal? Does it reach to the final?

PowerPoint: Transformed or Simply Electronic Version

Yesterday Tv was so bad that I finally end up at one of the music stations.  I realized that there was an older technology that I could have used – a radio.

I wonder how different the learning from our PowerPoints is  if we compare PowerPoint use to older ways of teaching.  Teachers have used chalkboards to present information. Teachers have used pictures to aid in the learning.  Teachers have shown movies (yes, we used to have movie projectors).  PowerPoint makes it easier to those things.  However, by itself PowerPoint does not increase student learning. What do you use PowerPoint for other than  agendas, notes, showing pictures, jumping to resources?

Do you use PowerPoint to help students to focus on the standard for the unit and to see their progress in the standard?  Do you use PowerPoint to scaffold information in a step by step process for the students so all can be successful?  Do you use PowerPoint to show exemplars? Do you use PowerPoint to provide practice exercises for them to assess how well they are doing in the standard? Do you use PowerPoint to celebrate their learning successes?  If you do those uses, then PowerPoint truly becomes a powerful learning tool for our students. PowerPoint aids you in transforming learning to success.

Changing the student grade paradigm

I taught an English honors class in high school where the constant question was “What is my grade?” The students were much more focused on their grades than on their learning.

How do we help students to focus on their learning and not their grades?  Even if we give them their grades for each homework, test, and project as soon as possible though an online program such as Blackboard, they still are focused on the grade.  To change the paradigm, we can use standards or goals checklists with the “grades” of AP -advanced,  P-proficient, B-basic, and S-starting. We  word process the checklist and give them a copy either physically or digitally.  Students can check off their goals as they achieve them. They can see their progression. We can conference with them about their progress and what they need to close the learning gap. These students know their “grades”.

How do help students to see their progress in learning goals?

Alternative Grading To Reflect Student Growth (Formative View)

I mentioned in a previous blog how I felt that my grading did not represent the true height of student learning but it did penalize the students for their early low scores.

Here are two possibilities:

1. Assign different grades different weight. Grades from the beginning of the project get 10% weight, middle get 30% and the ending ones get 60%. That way a grade of 60 (beginning), 70 (middle), and 100 (ending) results in a 90, rather than the average of 76. This can also work for lower-level thinking getting 10%, Application-Analysis getting 30%,and Synthesis-Evaluation getting 60%

2. Do not assign grades until the ending of the learning. Only give comments. If you use the same checklist/rubric, scale to assess the students, they can see their progress from time to time.

Student Improvement in the Standard Through Technology

So how do you know that you students are progressing in their standards-based learning within this unit?

If you gave your students a forced choice (TF, multiple choice, matching, etc.) pre-test, you can give them a post test. Blackboard and other online services (Zoomerang, ProProfs) allow you to test students and instantly see the results.

However, you probably do not want to wait until the post-test to see how well they are doing so you can give them short quizzes on specific aspects of their standards-based learning. You will test at the highest level of thinking. Again, online test programs give the students and you the results instantly (or when you release the grades). You may decide that these are practice tests that do not count for a grade but do count for allowing students to see their progress and understanding their learning gaps.

Students can graph their own progress on peer- or self-assessed checklists or  rubrics. Students can see the dramatic difference between a starting rubric (or checklist) score of 15, a midpoint one of 22, a third one of 25, and a fourth one of 27 out of 30.

If you have students produce work like a concept map, then you will want to have a student’s “at the start of the unit” concept map,, “in the middle of the unit”,  and at “at the end of the unit” concept map on the same topic. You can see new categories, and critical links.  They can see their maps growing with their new knowledge. When students do these maps digitally, they can save the original. Then they add more as they go through the unit. They can print out the easy-to-read concept maps.

Using a Pre-assessment as Formative Assessment

Usually students take a pre-assessment and the teacher is the only one to see the results. If we look at a pre-assessment as a formative assessment, then the students not only need to see the results but also need to be presented with new information or strategies to help them learn the standards-based material. The pre-assessment tells the students where they are in terms of the standard and where they need to be. A score such as 70 does not help them. Seeing which items they did well on and which they did not do well on provides them with an awareness about their present learning.

One technique is to have a checklist that you use to evaluate the pre-assessment. You check off those student strengthens that are present. Students can see what strengthens they have and know what areas they need to improve in. You can refer to a handout, textbook, or website that can help the students as they begin to progress in the standard.

Another technique is to have an online system that tells if each answer is correct or not. More important, you make a comment after the correct answer to explain the correct answer. Students can understand why they had an incorrect answer and begin to understand what is required for a correct answer. They have more than right or wrong; they have the start of their future learning in the standard.


RSS Education with Technology

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    hgtuttle
  • Curriculum Focus, Not Technology Focus July 28, 2016
    In my public school career I have been a classroom teacher, a technology integration specialist and a technology administrator. In my technology role, I served under the Assistant Superintendent for Instruction. She had a simple mission: Improve students’ academic learning. My mission was equally simple: Improve students’ academic learning through technology […]
    hgtuttle
  • Students React to Digital Badges: Pros, Cons and Interesting June 22, 2016
      ISTE 2016 By Harry Grover Tuttle, Ed. D. College World Language Students’ Preferences Digital Badges – 52%        Paper Certificates – 48% World Language: Can-Do Digital Badges Digital Badges Pro- – Breaks down proficiency more – Shows all badges at once – Is more attractive – Is more appropriate since we use […]
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  • Digital Badges: Naming the Badge October 29, 2015
    Once teachers have selected what learning and what digital badges (individual or category badges; see previous blog), the teachers encounter another decision. What will they name each badge? Will they use the full name of the Common Core Standard or the national proficiency? For English, under “Speaking and Listening,”will they write out SL.2 “Integrate and […]
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  • Digital Badges: Better Than Grades? October 19, 2015
    Teachers understand that the grade in a course consists of many different factors such as homework, participation , projects, tests, etc. Blodget observes that sometimes grades reflect attitude, effort, ability and behavior (http://www.academia.edu/9074119/Grading_and_Whether_or_not_Grades_Accurately_Reflect_Student_Achievement). Equally important, a letter […]
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  • World Language Students Use of Mobile Devices in the Classroom October 5, 2015
    Do world language students use technology n the classroom? Do their  teachers go beyond having their students use technology simply for the drill and practice in vocabulary and grammar? Students can use laptops and mobile devices to hear authentic language, read authentic texts, read tweets about famous performers, see up-to-the-moment culture,  watch video […]
    hgtuttle
  • Digital Badges: Individual or Categorized Learning Badges? September 12, 2015
    The idea of digital badges sounds appealing for the digital children in classes. As teachers start thinking about digital badges, they have to figure out what badges will be awarded. The teachers can award social or academic badges. If teachers decide to use academic badges, then the teachers may base their badges on the Common […]
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  • English +Common Core +Mobile = Success (ISTE2014 Poster -details) June 30, 2014
    Here are the ten examples I showed at my English + Common Core  + Mobile ISTE 2014 Poster Session: Based on CCSS Anchor Statements: L.2 Take a Conventions Mobile Online Quiz  to pick the  incorrect sentence from four choices (capitalization) SL.2  Evaluate audio recording of a  book chapter on mobile and predict for next chapter. […]
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  • Global Cultural Learning Using Mobile Devices (ISTE Mobile MegaShare Presentation) June 28, 2014
    Based on my presentation at ISTE 2014 Mobile Megashare Why teach about other countries? Location: Large view to small on maps. Culture or culture. Find six similarities in a  mobile picture from another culture (“Wars are caused by differences, not similarities.”-Tuttle.) Tell one piece of information from each different Internet visual from a place in that […]
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  • English + Common Core + Mobile = Success in Learning Poster Session at ISTE 2014 June 25, 2014
    In my ISTE Sunday 8-10 am poster session, I demonstrate many diverse mobile activities to help students achieve the English Language Arts Common Core Anchor Statements through mobile devices. The mobile activities focus on free common tool apps that are available on both the Android and the iPad. The students use the apps as a seamless […]
    hgtuttle

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