Thursday, February 12, 2015

Self-assessment - Students grading own tests

So at my school this week, we are doing enrollment conferences during two evenings and my department decided we will also assess this week.

Low-and-behold, I don't have a lot of free time to grade the "Snapshots" (tests) for my students.

We have them organized in 3-4 areas: listening, reading, writing, & speaking (sometimes we don't assess).

For my classes today, in addition to a sharing a romantic song, and having normal conversation, I thought students could actually grade their own work.

Since I've already been having them grade their own quizzes (exit slips), the idea is already in their heads that this is nothing new.

What I am trying today though (and tomorrow since I'm on a block), is students will clear their desks (including writing utensils).  I will pass back their snapshots, and a helper will pass out pens.  They must only take a blue pen if they didn't write in blue ink and a green pen otherwise.

Then we slowly go over the sections and make sure.  Since we use a 4.0 scale for Standards Based Grading, we talk about a 4.0, 3.0, 2.0, 1.0 and 0.0 looks like.  And we go over. I tell them to circle things that maybe aren't right.  At the end, I have them score a section before we move on and allow them to ask questions.  For example, a student first block didn't write any of his translations from the listening section into past tense.  So I asked the class.  They decided it would be a 3.75 because it was really close to being perfect, but not quite there.  Great discussion.

Then we discussed the Reading the same way.

For the writing section, we decided how they could be successful on the writing section and they came up with a basic guide.  After we came up with that, I offered them 5:00 to add to their writing or edit it to push themselves to try for better if they saw they could improve.

At the end, they wrote a 1 on the bottom of their paper on what they can start doing so their next snapshot can be higher (if possible).

I thought it opened up class for good conversation in first block and look forward to the rest of the blocks.  While more English was needed than I would like, I really hope it will help my kids see how they can be more successful each time.

I think I will continue to do this as best as I can.

But I told my wife my plan last night and she thought I was crazy.

For me, it's just like giving the students jobs in class, let's give them more responsibility little by little since it is their learning.  Why should I be the one wearing so many hats?

Please let me know if you've done something similar or any ideas you might have.

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