The goal of this inquiry is to determine how best I can help improve the quality of student learning at my school through improved assessment practices, specifically feedback.
I have decided we will do this in four ways:
- Run a series of staff workshops beginning with our assessment policy and then focusing of feedback. These workshops will allow us to articulate a shared vision of effective assessment, develop a common assessment vocabulary, and explore the theory of assessment.
- Conduct walkthroughs focused on developing a deeper understanding of how and what types of assessment are currently being conducted and used. This will allow me to refine the planning for subsequent workshops and for our collaborative planning meetings, as well as identify local experts who can act as a resource for other teachers.
- Use two different protocols across the year during collaborative planning sessions to examine formative student assessment data to inform instruction. This will connect assessment directly with daily teaching.
- Use teacher inquiry groups during which teachers will engage in small group collaborative inquiries to improve a self-selected area of their own assessment practice.
This four pronged approach is based on the theory of action that “improving student learning and teacher quality happens in the immediacy of daily lessons” (Moss & Brookhart, 2015). This is borne out by my own experiences as well. The further the professional learning is from the classroom door, the less able we are to implement what we’ve learned.
As we are PYP teachers, it is essential that our learning about assessment follows an inquiry model. I will use the following collaborative inquiry model that I adapted to organise our work.
For the remainder of my blog posts, I will reflect on the process of planning – what conceptual understandings we will need to address, possible ways of doing it, useful resources, and what questions I can anticipate.
Any suggestions or recommendations about strategies, resources, or videos what will get teachers thinking about their own assessment beliefs and practices, would be greatly appreciated, as this will be the first step in our journey.