Have you ever come across a REALLY great IDEA that you knew would REALLY help you and just make life a little easier…but especially MORE effective? Something that would make you BETTER at what you do?
I have… www.ClassDojo.com
I had a chance yesterday to sit down and go through my PGP and Domain/Elements. I created an e-PGP to collect evidence and have been working to keep my focus on student progression through strong assessment in the front of my mind.
What came out of it all… just how challenging my job really is… Working to use my Assessment for Learning…strong practice and good teaching and learning with 17 different classes and over 150 different students.
It is mind boggling… my gifted classes are each working on different topics which require different content benchmarks across different grade levels. My science classes range from K-2 and have different grade level benchmarks.
I will say….this year it is difficult. I can accomplish short, formative assessments like ‘thumbs up/down”, pair share, KWL or mind maps…using in depth questioning..but taking observation notes on students for all 17 classes and over 150 students? ugh…my mind truly gets muddled.
I am getting better though…but I only have 40 minutes with my science students. I notice to really get a good assessment…it takes time…10 minutes and my class is 1/3 of the way over (by the time you count transitions, clean up and such).
I am trying to tighten up those areas…and still I wonder…how will I get through all 4 quadrants of my BEST? Truthfully, I don’t think it’s possible and I’m probably not expected…but I want to because I know it’s good teaching and learning and I don’t want to lose the strengths I’ve gained as a teacher.
But I’m hanging in there. Yesterday and today I spent some time really getting my CLASSDOJO.com site better organized and rolled out. I changed the behaviours (positive and negative) to assessment language and behaviours I am looking for.
On the ‘negative’ side..which I’m not sure that term is what I want up there, I placed common areas of concern that I see with students (difficulty with focus, literacy difficulty, handwriting..ect) as well as behaviours that I might need to tract if a student struggles…focus, needs to move, did not finish.. the negative is more to help me focus on what support a student might need.
Hence, I’m not really sure negative is the right word. Students have cute Avatars!”][/caption] So today…I fired up my colour nook… and opened each class as they arrived.. tracking attendance and WAWLA! (is that how you spell that?) However, I am NOT complaining. Just today I saw…and wanted to keep assessments on…5 grade GSP, K science, 2nd Science as well as a 4th grade GSP class. Tomorrow I will see 6th GSP, a different K science and the same 5 grade GSP. It has been doing my head in a bit because I KNOW good assessment ensures my planning is meeting student needs. Still..figuring it out with 17 different types of classes and being able to record it all quickly and with value has required some thought. We’ll see how it goes…