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What is Formative Assessment?. Heather Mullins HPS Middle/High Schools Instructional Coach. What is Formative Assessment?. part of the instructional process provides information needed to adjust teaching and learning while they are happening

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what is formative assessment

What is Formative Assessment?

Heather Mullins

HPS Middle/High Schools Instructional Coach

what is formative assessment1
What is Formative Assessment?
  • part of the instructional process
  • provides information needed to adjust teaching and learning while they are happening
  • informs both teachers and students about student understanding at a point when timely adjustments can be made
  • helps teachers determine next steps during the learning process as the instruction approaches the summative assessment of student learning
formative assessment strategies you may already use
Formative Assessment Strategies You May Already Use
  • Knowledge Rating
  • Jigsaw
  • GIST
  • Knowledge Triangles
  • Break it Down and Solve it
  • What I Know sentences
  • Graffiti Write
  • Capture your Thoughts
assessment and teaching strategies
Assessment and Teaching Strategies
  • Effective Questions

What makes a question effective?

  • Asking meaningful questions -- beyond knowing and understanding
  • Increasing the wait time for student answers
  • Having rich follow-up activities that extend student thinking
assessment and teaching strategies1
Assessment and Teaching Strategies

2) Appropriate Feedback

In what ways to you provide feedback to your students?

Are these methods effective?

  • Black and Wiliam found that giving grades does not improve performance.
  • Using tasks and oral questioning that encouraged students to demonstrate comprehension…
  • Providing comments on what was done well and what needs improvement, with guidance on how to make improvements should be the focus instead of grades.


assessment and teaching strategies2
Assessment and Teaching Strategies

3) Peer- and Self-Assessment

How do students peer assess in your classroom?

Self assess?

Are these methods effective?

  • Peer-assessment and self-assessment "secure aims that cannot be achieved in any other way."
  • Achieving success requires that students have a clear understanding of the standards and be taught the skills of peer- and self-assessment.
today s strategies literacy and formative assessment

Today’s Strategies:Literacy and Formative Assessment

Periodic SummaryMost and Least Clear


Cell Phone


periodic summary
Periodic Summary
  • After each two to three paragraphs, students will write one to two summary sentences.
  • If students cannot summarize, then they can use the GIST activity and choose the five to seven most important words to help them develop their summary sentence(s).
most and least clear
Most and Least Clear
  • As students to reflect on what is most and least clear in the material and write their comments in the appropriate boxes.
  • Use this information for
    • individual remediation,
    • adjusting group instructions
    • deciding what to emphasize or what next steps to take with the material
most and least clear1
Most and Least Clear
  • Variations:
    • Share with partner and work to clarify, and partners share remaining questions with the whole class
    • Ticket out the Door or Admit Slip
  • Advance Organizer for rereading an assignment
  • Identify a reading assignment students have already read
  • Ask students to reflect on what they learned from the passage and to identify aspects of the reading they feel are still unclear.
  • Have students use their completed sheet of reflections as an advance organizer for rereading the assignment.
  • During their rereading, they can take notes beside the points and topics they identified as unclear.
cell phone
Cell Phone
  • Use to help students prepare for a test
  • Ask students to pretend they are going to call a friend tonight about their test.
  • “What advice would you give your friend about what and how to study?”
  • Give students an opportunity to write their response and share with another classmate.
  • Ask for volunteers to share with the class.
do overs
  • Use after a test, assignment, or project has been completed and graded.
  • “Do-Overs” gives students an opportunity to reflect on what they would have done differently..
    • Study
    • Preparation
    • Work related to the assignment
do overs1
  • Brief individual conferences
  • If both you and the student agree that it is reasonable to do so, give the student a second chance to do all or part of the assignment over.
  • Check to ensure the strategies the student suggests are realistic and related to the performance in question.
  • Point out the connections between effort, engagement with materials and content and achievement.

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Beers, Sue (2008). Adolescent literacy. Alexandria, Virginia: Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development.

Blachowicz, C., & Cobb, C. (2007). Teaching vocabulary across the content areas. Alexandria, Virginia: Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development.

Black, C. H., Lee, C., Marshall, B., and Wiliam, D. (2004). "Working Inside the Black Box: Assessment for Learning in the Classroom". Phi Delta Kappan: 9-21.

Brassard, M. (1989). The Memory Jogger Plus+, pp. 17-39. Methuen, MA: Goal/QPC.

Bullock, P., & Maben A. (2005). Cornell Notes. AVID: Decades of college dreams. Retrieved December 10, 2008, from

Department of the Navy (November 1992). Fundamentals of Total Quality Leadership (Instructor Guide), pp. 6-64 – 6-67. San Diego, CA: Naval Personnel Research and Development Center.

Department of the Navy (June 1994). Methods for Managing Quality (Instructor Guide), Module 2, Lesson 4 pp. 48-57. Washington, DC: OUSN Total Quality Leadership Office.

King, R. (1989). Hoshin Planning, The Developmental Approach, pp. 4-2 – 4-5. Methuen, MA: Goal/QPC.