D. V.1 Discussion: Formative and Summative Assessment Strategies

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In this process you will evaluate a classroom post-observation scenario narrative.  

You will focus on formative and summative assessment strategies and offer guidance on technology tools that can assist in providing more informed data. 

  1. As you read the scenarios below think about the key characteristics associated with Formative evaluation/assessment and Summative evaluation/assessment both in the classroom for student achievement as well as for teacher evaluation/success.
  2. Discuss the technology tools and support recommendations for both Formative and Summative evaluation/assessment.
  3. In your discussion: 
    • Remember to state which scenario you read 
    • Consider technology solutions that can assist in more timely, relevant, and valid assessments

Elementary Scenario

Antonio Roberts is eagerly awaiting a conference with Mary Brown, the Assistant Principal in his school. She has observed Antonio’s class to provide him with feedback on his students’ progress following implementation of the new reading program. Prior to her observation, she and Antonio met to talk about the strategies he was using to engage all learners in this curriculum. They decided that the focus for this observation would relate to California Standards for the Teaching Profession Standard 4, Planning Instruction and Designing Learning Experiences for All Students and Standard 5, Assessing for Student Learning. Ms. Brown suggested that Antonio review the standards following the observation and reflect on what he and his students did that demonstrated increased engagement. As Antonio reflected, he was able to identify evidence that his students were self-monitoring. He also noted that students had been actively engaged in the three strategies he had incorporated into the lesson. He still wondered, however, whether he was differentiating instruction in a manner that allowed students who had already mastered skills to enhance their learning. As the conference began, Ms. Brown asked Antonio what he thought had gone well during the lesson. He shared his insights, and she reinforced his belief that the students had been appropriately engaged in the learning strategies he had utilized. She asked him to talk more about his conclusion that students were self-monitoring. This allowed him to share with her a new management system he had installed. Ms. Brown then inquired as to whether Antonio had identified skills that he would like to improve at which point he shared his concerns about his ability to differentiate. Ms. Brown listened intently and asked him to talk to her about what it might look like if he were differentiating to meet the different performance levels in his class. As he spoke, she interjected at points—at times, sharing resources (including other teachers who might be willing for him to observe their use of effective strategies; at times, asking additional questions, and occasionally sharing from her own experience. As the conference ended, they agreed upon three specific steps that Antonio would take to develop his skills in differentiation. He also agreed to share his system for student monitoring at the next grade level meeting.

Secondary Scenario

Beth McAdams is scheduled to meet with her school’s Principal, John Washington, to talk about his recent observation in her science classroom. She is anxious about this conference because she is eager to please Mr. Washington whom she admires and whom she also knows “to have the principal’s ear.” She hopes that he was impressed with the class he observed, although she doesn’t believe that he saw her “finest teaching.” She assumes that he will use the California Standards for the Teaching Profession to evaluate her, but she really doesn’t have a clue as to how he’ll proceed. Mr. Washington leads off the conference by thanking Beth for coming and for welcoming him to her classroom. He then states that “she did a fairly good job” with classroom management, but he thinks she should work on her transitions. She nods her head, remembering how some students had clowned around when moving from an individual to a group activity. He tells her that his primary interest, however, is in how she is helping students master State standards. He notes that he did not see the lesson objectives written on the board as he’d expected and that he sometimes “got lost” as she was explaining mitosis. He wonders whether her students really understood the concept. He praises her for her movement around the room while the students worked in pairs on a problem. He also notes that her bulletin boards were attractive and informative and that she seemed to have classroom materials well-organized. Mr. Washington then turns to Beth and asks if she has any comments or questions. She is at a loss for words. She does have a few questions that she’d like to ask him (for example, “At what point did he “get lost” in her explanation?”), but she is afraid she will put him on the spot or offend him. So, she thanks him for his time and promises to work on her transitions and clarity. Although she knows this was not a formal evaluation, she’s still curious as to how Mr. Washington would rate her so she asks as she stands up to leave: “On a scale of 1-10, how would you rate my performance for the class you observed?” He responds that he’d give her a 6.5.3.