Saturday, September 26, 2015

Student Choice

When given the option, I'll choose _____________ .

An assessment with a new teacher can be quite stressful. It doesn't matter the rubric, the preparation, nor the skill level, if one has an option of activities to show what one can do, given the same objective for each,  students will be more relaxed and confident in their abilities. This idea was reinforced to me this year as I enter a position in a different district. I love saying "yes" to students so I try to find ways to make situations for them to ask yes questions.

Recently we finished reading the second chapter of ¡Viva el Toro!  This was based on vocabulary that the students were working on via this story. After learning the required vocabulary, students then read the chapter. Of course this is a very simplified description of what actually happens, but the purpose of this blog post is on the assessment, not the reading itself.

After repeated circling of the information, the students are very familiar with each of the stories. They use the same vocabulary in different situations. At the time of the output assessments, each successfully presents either the class story or the chapter.

One way students presented a question to me that evoked a "yes" response, is to request the use of pictures notes. These are visual reminders of what happened in the story or the chapter so that they remember all the information they are to use. Some of my best ideas have come from students. I truly believe they know how they learn best and what they need to succeed. I also like to have a reflective question on tests that isn't figured into their grades. This offers additional insight into how they learn best and activities that I can use or ditch to better help them.

Can you tell which story this student chose to retell?

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