Assessing Students

Formative Assessment

Formative assessment is a way of “testing” your students during the learning process.  I use formative assessments regularly to determine what my students do and do not understand. I use these assessments to determine what topics I can breeze through and what topics I need to re-teach or provide further clarification.  There are many tools that I use for formative assessment, but here are a few of my favorites.

  • I use mentimeter for quick, anonymous polls.  My favorite types of quizzes are: word cloud, multiple choice, likert scales, and open-ended. Each these allows me to see what students are thinking in terms of the concepts I am teaching.  Another one of my favorites is the quiz feature which allows students to put in their name, though it can be a pseudonym, and compete to be on a leaderboard.  Students LOVE mentimeter!
  • Students also love Kahoot.  Kahoot is an online “game-based learning platform.” As with mentimeter, students compete to be on a leaderboard.  The competition motivates students and encourages learning.
  • For me, socrative as replaced clickers. As long as students have access to a mobile device, tablet, laptop, or computer, they use this app to complete assessments.  As the teacher, you can review questions with your students and provide clarification for them as needed. There are also a few games that you can play. One of the best features about Socrative is that you can download all quizzes to a pdf. Students can use this hard copy of the assessment for further studying.
  • No technology, no problem. Just print a class set of multiple choice cards on colored cardstock.  Have students individually answer questions, and then have a class discussion of each question. As you read a question, students hold up the card that represents their answer.  Then, have students engage in a discussion justifying their answer choice.

My Favorite No

Today (11/17/16) I was teaching my students how to write a lesson plan using the BOPPPS method.  I had a few resources on formative assessment, and within one of those lessons, I found a gem.  I will probably add this to my favorite things as well because I love this THAT much.  I won’t explain the technique here because it is explained perfectly in the video.


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