Remember when every single unit ended in an exam in high school? Did you enjoy it? What if you’re not a good test taker? Did it show the entirety of your knowledge on the topic? Not all assessments are built for everyone!
What if I told you there are NUMEROUS ways to assess a student’s scientific knowledge that do NOT include an exam?? Interested?
An article titled “Rethinking the Role of the Science Teacher” in The Science Teacher journal states: “…teachers are in the best position to put assessment data to the most powerful use.”
Here’s an example of a teacher implementing GAMES into her classroom as an assessment strategy!
Here’s some other examples of powerful uses of assessment:
Need a way to assess how well a student knows the cell organelles?
- The Wanted Poster
- Shows how much they know about the specific organelles!
- Presidential Campaign
- What’s the most important organelle?
- Shows what they know about the interrelatedness of the cells!
- Cell City / Infographic
- Shows what they know about all organelles & how they work together
All of these (and many more) have the ability to assess a student’s knowledge, and there’s not a multiple choice exam in sight!
Let’s pay some attention to the Cell City example!
- Tell the students that they are to create a city made out of cell organelles
- This allows the students to gain an understanding of the interrelatedness of the organelles
- Rather than the exam question, “Which organelle provides energy to the cell?”
- Have them compare the mitochondria to the power plant of the city
- Here’s an example of a rubric, since there’s not exactly an “exam key”
What about accommodations?
Accommodations for ELL students:
- Print everything clearly, no cursive, no crazy fonts
- Give instructions written and orally
- Use lots of visuals
- Provide translated rubric
- Allow group work with both English speaking students and English language learners
- Provide an example
Accommodations for ADHD students:
- Provide a schedule for how/when to complete the assignment
- Provide option to either work alone or with a group
- Provide frequent checks for accuracy
- Provide an example
- Provide option for doing it on paper or on computer
There's a reason the word "test" isn't in the definition of the word "assessment." Then why do students automatically expect a test when we say there's an assessment coming up? Let's change that! #scienceteaching #EDT432 @AnnMacKenzie
— Miss Welsh (@MissWelsh3) March 28, 2019