Determining how well a student has learned a topic or subject has not changed much over the last couple of centuries. For the most part, teachers will present a quiz or test for the students to take, and their score will dictate a rather large chunk of their grade.
However, is this the best way to figure out how well students have learned a lesson?
Where Else in Life?
In the real world, when presented with a problem, the person is free to use whatever resources they can to come up with a solution. This might mean searching for an answer online, looking through YouTube videos on how to correctly do something, or even asking the person down the street for help.
However, in school, students are expected to master the topic by memorization after only reviewing it, likely for a week or two. It does not sound fair.
Of course, there is a need for some assessment; otherwise, the students could completely tune out the lesson. Nevertheless, tests and quizzes are not the only options. As a classroom teacher for well more than a decade, I found that students seemed to flourish much more and demonstrated what they learned through these other ways of evaluation better than what a test or quiz showed.
With the amount of technology available at our fingertips nowadays, asking students of all ages to create presentations detailing what they have learned will enable them to use their knowledge and creativity. Presentations could be used for book summarizations, complete chapter reviews of History of Science, and countless other lessons. As there are numerous presentation apps available, let the student choose which one they will use and figure out how to explain what they have gleaned.
Of course, you do not need to use technology for assessments either. Creating a diorama may seem old school for many educators, but the students love doing them. Some of my students’ favorite projects were when they could take a shoebox and create a diorama about a scene they envisioned in history. Most importantly, the students loved to do this! The amount of creativity and detail they used on many of these dioramas made me feel like a few of these projects deserved to be in a museum somewhere.
Create Stations Around the Room
Every student likes to feel like they are participating in some game show. It brings on a sort of excitement and anticipation about what is coming up next. By creating stations around the room, little questions or experiments that must be solved correctly, students can actively participate in tackling these problems and perhaps even earning a prize for the top winners. It is incredible how much fun a timer and a buzzer will provide in a classroom of students.
Comic Book Summarization
Graphic novels seem to be getting more popular by the day in today’s society. There are a number of them that appear on the New York Times’ Best Seller lists. Please take advantage of this fascination with graphic novels and have the students create their explaining what they have learned about some topic or subject.
Tip of the Iceberg
While these are just a few ideas, countless more types of assessments can be put to good use instead of always going with the typical test or quiz. Again, there is certainly nothing wrong with ascertaining a student’s knowledge through a test now and then, but to always use this as the assessment can be pretty monotonous.
Some Standardized Tests You Cannot Avoid
Of course, these two standardized tests can help dictate a good portion of your near future when it comes to the ACT and SAT.
- Want to get into the college of your choice?
- Would you love to earn a scholarship to help pay for college?
Achieving a high score on the ACT or SAT could allow you to do both! Moreover, do not worry if your test-taking skills are not where they should be for these standardized exams. With iAchieve’s specialized tutors that focus only on these exams, there is an outstanding possibility, with our assistance, that you will earn the best score you have had to date. The summer is the perfect time to be studying for these exams! Please do not wait until it is too late.
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