Exit Interview

 

  • Philosophy of Assessment?
    • Differentiation
      • Important to give the students what they need to succeed
      • May be different for each individual
    • Involving students in assessment
      • Students are able to influence their learning/assessment
      • Know what they have to know
      • Gives students responsibility over their learning
    • Beginning with the End in Mind
      • Important for the teacher but more important for the students
      • Helps to ensure that what they are being taught is what they will be assessed on. Also helps to connect to outcome and indicators
  • Different types of assessment from field?
    • Formative
      • Exit slips
        • Often students didn’t put effort in if they knew it “wasn’t for marks”
      • Question box
        • Only used when we told them
      • Discussion
      • Questioning
      • KWL chart/3,2,1
        • Many girls already said they knew everything we were teaching them when they didn’t
      • Summative
        • Three Week Assessment (Rubric & Questioning)
          • Most students gave an accurate
        • STI Presentation (Rubric)
          • Could have made more detailed
          • After presentation we realized we would have included some components into the rubric that we left out (voice projection, eye contact, sharing presentation among group members)
  • Did lived experience align with philosophy?
    • Differentiation:
      • Our Co-op did not tell us of some of the students with intellectual disabilities until the last week. Will be important to find out this information for myself in the future so that we can differentiate for students.
    • Involving Students in Assessment:
      • I found it was much easier to do this in the classroom rather than in the gym
      • With the rubric we ensured they understood what was expected of them, for next time would involve them in the process much more.
      • Partner Assessments
    • Beginning with the End in Mind:
      • Were able to do this in both Health 9 and Wellness 10 easily but struggled somewhat in PE because we weren’t sure what/how they wanted us to teach. Also, they had us change what we were teaching halfway through
  • Key Learnings:
  1. Formative Assessment is very important
    1. I constantly used formative assessment in my pre-internship. It helped me to understand what they did/didn’t know. Especially walking into someone else’s classroom this was very important. Once I understood this, I could use that information to influence and enhance my lessons.
  2. Assessments shouldn’t be a secret.
    1. I found that when I ensure the students understood what they were being assessed on the end result was much better. When I was in high school I often found that I didn’t know how I was being assessed and was surprised at the result. When students are involved in the assessment process it makes for a much richer experience for all involved.
  3. Differentiation is difficult.
    1. I found it difficult to differentiate for some students when I was just trying to grasp what it means to be a teacher. I think once I get a better handle on the content I will be teaching, as well as building relationships with my students, it will become much easier.
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Carousel Activity – Rick Wormeli – Redo

I really enjoyed the Rick Wormeli videos we viewed in the carousel activity. Each of the videos held valuable information that all teachers could benefit from hearing. It felt as if many of the points he would make in his videos should just be common sense to all teachers, but often teachers instruct in the exact opposite to how we should be teaching due to a number of reasons (teachers feeling overworked, repetition of behaviours/teaching styles we were taught, etc.). In his video on students I felt he hit a number of key points, which resonated with me.

Rick talked about how often teachers see themselves above students, expecting students to go “50/50” with them, and teachers not agreeing to spoon feed students. On major point I got out of this is that as teachers we must realize that we must be the adult in the situation. This may seem like an obvious point to make, however I feel that often teachers get caught up in certain situations and forget that their pupils are still teenagers. The problem with being the adult in the situation is that you will have to take the responsibility in many situations. You will have to help certain students to success by placing a number of supports at their disposal. This will mean that you may have to give more than the “50/50” (as stated above), or “spoon feed” your students by giving them additional supports needed for them to succeed (allowing them a redo/extended due date). I feel that many of these things are just responsibilities of teaching that we often forget about as we progress further into the profession.

 

The second point I wanted to make it that it is our responsibility as teachers to make  the content compelling. Rick gives the example of the student who says/thinks, “I don’t care about school and I don’t care if I get an F”. He indicates that this type of student should not be in charge of their learning, which seemed very obvious to me after he said it, however those are often the students that we overlook. As the responsible adult we must intervene and save the student from themselves. We must utilize strategies that ensure that the student is not allowed to give up. One of these strategies is to  make the content captivating so that we don’t allow that student to give up. This can be difficult and much more work, however it is one small price that we must pay in order to become master teachers.

Chapter 7 & 8

Chapter 7 is all about using assessment to guide instruction. In a way, this chapter merges backwards by design with involving students in assessment because it involves going through the process of thinking about the product and ways to reach it with the students’ input . At the start of the chapter Davies explains, “daily involvement in classroom assessment builds a strong foundation for learning” (p.63). This foundation is crucial in helping a student succeed. I find, even in university classes, when I am involved in the process of building an assessment (even on Monday when building the rubric for our assignment) it helps me to understand what is expected of me. Therefore, I can begin to shape ideas about what my assignment will need in order to meet the required outcome. Much of this chapter gives many examples of ways to incorporate students in the assessment for their learning, and indicates that it will greatly improve their product (sometimes assessment of learning).

 

One passage that resonated with me was, “educators are teaching students how to learn as well as what they need to know and be able to do” (p. 71). This passage hit home for me because it helped me to come to the realization that at the end of the day, students will not remember everything that we have taught them, but if we can teach them how to learn, that is a skill that they will use for the rest of their lives. If we can get our students to take some responsibility (TPSR, Don Hellison) for their own learning, in turn helping them to discover how they learn best, we can help them to become lifelong learners in whatever they choose. Once we have taught them the foundational skills needed to learn, the door of opportunity is flung wide open. Therefore, as teachers we have the key to help unlock our students’ potential. A HUGE opportunity.

 

Chapter 8 discusses ways to help your students gather evidence of their own learning. It lays out a process to follow that will help your students understand what is needed of them, and why. For this concept to work it is important that your students see the value in gathering evidence of their own learning, otherwise it will not work. It then gives examples of ways students can gather this evidence through the use of various types of portfolios. It also discusses the importance of parent involvement because, “receiving feedback from people whose opinion they value can increase not only students’ motivation but also their learning” (p.83). I think that this is a great idea that I would like to try in my future classroom. It will be very important to have parents/guardians/role models of the students that want to be involved in their learning process, otherwise the process would only work through having feedback from the teacher (maybe other students as well) and may not reach the potential it could have.

Beginning With the End in Mind & Ministry Conversation

First off, I would like to discuss Chapter 3: Beginning With the End in Mind. I enjoyed this chapter because it helped to clarify that, when planning, one must be cognizant of what they want to assess. This may seem like a logical thing to do, however I feel that often we, as teachers, overlook it. When we know what we want our students to be able to achieve (outcomes) before hand, we are able to use this information to plan for future lessons that will directly relate. This not only important for the teachers, but it is important for the students as well. The chapter then goes on to state the influence clear expectations can have on students’ success, explaining, “when we know what we’re going to be doing, we mentally prepare ourselves to activate more of our brain by doing so”. This passage helped to clarify that students will have a better learning experience when they have a clear goal in mind. After reading this chapter I feel that it is very important to work with my future students to come up with a goal for their learning that they clearly understand. In doing this I can teach them much more effectively, in turn helping my students to learn that much better.

Another portion of this chapter that stuck out to me was that often we assume that all of our students are going to learn in the same way and in the same amount of time. Obviously this is not the case. This section reminds me of the idea of equality vs equity. I think it is very important to give the students what they need to succeed, and often what one student may need to achieve success will be very different than another student. Along with this, it is very important to be able to understand exactly what each individual needs, through establishing relationships, as well as having a deep understanding of the subject matter. When we have a good relationship with each of our students we are able to understand when they may need: some extra time on an assignment, a kick in the butt (motivation), supports (eg. scribing), or simply some one-on-one learning time. It sounds like a lot of work, and it very well may be, however I think that if we want to be successful teachers, not simply “go through the motions”, it is necessary for the success of our students.

Lastly I would like to talk about the talk we had with Tim from the Ministry. I felt that this opened up my eyes to many different things, from funding to graduation rates. Before this session I simply viewed the Ministry as the group of people who wrote curriculum, however as I now see, there is much more to it. I really enjoyed when he was talking about some of the new initiatives,that have been successful in New Zealand, that they plan to incorporate and improve graduation rates of First Nations people. I am very curious of all of the details and have many questions. What will our role as teachers/administrators/citizens be? What will change in schools/public? Who will be involved? Is it a completely new facelift on the curriculum? I have many questions that I can only assume will be answered in the years to come. Growing up in a northern, rural community surrounded by reserves and First Nations people, I have always been intrigued with their way of life, and I look forward to future opportunities where I can help to influence this kind of change. It is an exciting time!