demonstrations of insights and understanding; see posted schedule
GRADE BOOK QUESTION, and invitation
As people continue developing their rubrics, we need a clear answer to a grade book question: What scores go in the gradebook? Why? Who will determine scores? Using what measuring tools? Who makes these tools?
Classes discussed this question, among others, on April 5. The class notes from that day suggest a majority imagine the presentation scores going in the grade book. My assessment proposal implies that these scores go in the grade book. We need to make sure, however, that everyone understands this, even if not every individual endorses the plan. If a significant number argue successfully for an alternate plan, I am willing to listen and adapt.
In the interest of transparency and fairness, so that all sections have equal access, please write a comment on this blog post, if you want to endorse the plan or explain another proposal. Post this comment today, since the demonstrations start in earnest tomorrow.
If you have not already, show me a draft of your rubric, complete with title (for types of demonstrations it addresses) and specific descriptors for each performance criterion. The rubric also needs to show how an observer distinguishes levels of performance. How, for example, does one determine good from excellent in a given category?
Talk with classmates, in case some of you are designing rubrics for similar demonstrations. You are welcome to create a rubric with partners; each individual needs one that suits his or her performance, which does not mean each rubric must differ from all others.
You need time to develop a functional rubric, which includes time to revise after receiving feedback. As a group, we need rubrics that have already been revised before the presentation day, in order to be fair to presenter and respondents. Now is the moment to develop these rubrics because after today presenters take priority for class time use.
A last word about assessment
Each of you needs to provide a clear, suitable rubric to at least two classmates and myself. This expectation comes from my proposal, since no alternative approach emerged from student responses to my plan. For each set of collected rubrics, I will record a score that reflects areas of significant overlap and discrepancy.
This week’s presenters
Andrew L, Katie (D)
Cory, Chandler (C)
Brian, Wick, McKay (A)
Stacy, Bailey (D)
Maggie, Tori (C)
Jordan Margaret (A)
(14 presenters out of 36 total students)
review demonstration schedule to find your assignment
read, if necessary
or continue designing and building demonstration and corresponding rubric
no class Thursday for D and A blocks (Sr. Retreat)
If necessary, read on.
Blog; if you have not yet met the expectation for posting today.
Continue designing and/or building your demonstration and corresponding rubric.
Given today’s special Science schedule, we have 35 minutes of class time, which translates to approximately __________ minutes of quality work time. Go, Science!
Recommended: read my teacher reflection on blog #1, before you start composing this installment.
My previous reflection claims that the term “assessment” means to sit beside someone. In that reflection, I also argue that rubrics, which are valuable assessment tools, work best when they describe observations rather than make judgments. In the spirit of sitting beside you these past two weeks, I want to offer an observation, without judgment. I simply want to describe what I see, as faithfully and respectfully as I can. When I invest time and energy in a project like this biography unit, I have to be careful to stay objective while assessing results. Personal attachment can cloud my impressions of what is actual happening, thereby jeopardizing future such experiments.
We are entering a new stage of our experimental unit–the sustaining stage. An increasing number of people are using class time to check email, finish Math problems or shop online. At the end of this the second week, which roughly represents the halfway mark, some are still using class time to read, but not everyone. Several people have finished their books, while others are plowing through their stories. This difference in reading progress is partly explained by various abilities, interests and commitments. Different book lengths also play a role. All things considered, though, we are now experiencing that big midway hurdle over which some people understandably find it hard to jump. We need to renew the initial enthusiasm, by completing the reading, composing a final demonstration and implementing that design. The prospect of everyone’s sharing his and her insights is what energizes me at this stage. I think of these presentations as parting gifts from individuals to the larger group.
So what? So, now what? Keep at it. Encourage one another. Recall, if necessary, what created your initial interest in this person’s story. Make a real effort to share your new understandings with your classmates. Honor them in this way. Honor the authors and subjects of these books.
photo credit: cronkitenews.asu.edu
TODAY’S AGENDA (in this order):
schedule presentations–by writing your name on the whiteboard, for your preferred date
advance project independently or in group(s)