The paths to "Eureka" moments: Teaching Mathematics in Secondary Education

Posts tagged ‘standards-based assessment’

Practicing Standards-based Assessment

P-3 Practice standards-based assessment. 

Teacher-candidates use standards-based assessment that is systematically analyzed using multiple formative, summative, and self-assessment strategies to monitor and improve instruction. As a teacher, I use inquiry-based formative assessment as well as quizzes in the midst of units to determine student readiness levels. Using  the data and feedback to inform my instruction,  I am able to create lessons that target the standards based content in which students struggle. 

The following quiz was given to a class of 8th grade algebra students to assess their understanding of recursive sequences.

The standard specifically addressed was:

A1.7.C Express arithmetic and geometric sequences in both explicit and recursive forms, translate between the two forms, explain how rate of change is represented in each form, and use the forms to find specific terms in the sequence.

After reviewing the quizzes and discovering areas where students struggled through student inquiry and exit tickets, I was able to plan several lessons of review using different methodologies of teaching (see previous post: LINK for specific lesson). The three sample quizzes are representative of the spread of achievement in the class.  Student A demonstrated mastery of the subject in the first quiz and was challenged with more difficult problems in following lessons. Student B was not proficient in the quiz content, but demonstrated good problem solving techniques. And Student C struggled with the content in the initial quiz.

Attached are both quiz results: Student A Student B Student C

After teaching these lessons where we reviewed definitions, examples, and worked collaboratively to expand our learning, a second quiz was given.

The results of the second quiz compared to that of the first, demonstrate the success of intentional planning for specific topics of instruction. As evidenced by the three examples of student work, students were able to better communicate their analysis of the sequences and summarize their understanding of recursive equations. Student A continued to demonstrate mastery, Student B demonstrated proficiency, and Student C made the largest leap in academic achievement by demonstrating mastery.

Through this experience, I learned that lessons are effective when taught based student need. If I had not quizzed the students at the beginning of the week, I would not have been able to tailor my instruction to their needs, but would have perhaps taught concepts they had a firm grasp of, while neglecting areas they may have struggled in.

Students also benefit from inquiry and planning for instruction. On the one hand, students are able to see their academic progress which will motivate for future learning. Additionally, class time is spent learning and growing in areas where students are not proficient. This creates an efficient learning time without reviewing topics students have already mastered.

As demonstrated by the above evidence, I practice standards-based assessment through regular formative assessments (inquiry based observation and quizzes) and timely summative assessments.

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