Understanding assessment of children’s learning.

Understanding assessment of children’s learning

Name

Institution

Course

Date

YEAR 3 TEACHER,

MACQUARIE UNIVERSITY PRIMARY SCHOOL,

P.O. BOX

DATE:

INFORMATION SHEET FOR PARENTS/GURDIANS

To be retained by parents/guardian only

Understanding assessment of children’s learning

Assessment-Year 3

We would like to inform you that the school is planning to start an assessment for the learning of year 3 pupils. The learning assessment will be conducted by the class teacher with the help of the school administration and you as a parent.

Assessment of the children’s learning is a very vital tool that helps teachers and parents monitor the progress of children in school. Deciding that your child should not be assessed will not affect his or her current class performance. Before you make a decision on whether your child will be assessed, it is good for you to have an understanding of the importance of assessing children’s learning and what will be your role in the assessment. Please take sufficient time to go through this information and if you wish you discuss it with other people. Ask the school assistant principal using the contacts below if you want more information or there is something you clarity.

What is the purpose of the learning assessment?

Assessment is one of the integral parts of teaching and child’s learning. It is a tool that will be used to collect evidence about the achievements of the children. Being aware of what is assessed and how learning will be assessed will help the teacher, students, and parents/guardians to gain a deeper understanding of what should be valued and where to focus the attention.

Assessment will be used for several purposes, but the main purpose will be to support the learning of the students (NSW Education Standards Authority, 2012).

Currently, there are 30 students in the class (18 boys and 12 girls) with a different range of abilities and in order to ensure that they all obtain excellent performance, the school has decided to implement an assessment program. Assessment will enable the class teacher to find out what each child understands, how each child thinks, what each child is able to do, and what is their interests and dispositions. This information will help you and the class teacher builds understanding of your child as competent and capable learner in order to support his or her further development and learning (NSW Education Standards Authority, 2012). The teacher will use information collected from the assessment to give feedbacks to students and their parents about their improvements. Assessment feedbacks will also provide enjoyable and challenging learning environment and experiences to the students, choose the most appropriate support for each child, and make sound plans for the next steps (Australian Federation, 2017).

How will assessment information collected

The class teacher will use different methods of collecting information about each child’s progress in their development and learning. The class teacher will decide which method is best depending on the student being assessed, and the aspects of development and learning being focused on. In choosing the assessment method, the class teacher will be mindful in the background, culture, language, interests, abilities, and areas that need extra support (UNSW Australia, 2015). For instance, the class linguistically and culturally diverse with over 15 different languages. The school will ensure that the chosen assessment method is compatible with each child’s language and culture. There are also 2 girls and 1 boy in the class from an indigenous background. The method chosen for these three students will be mindful in their background. There is also a child in the class with moderate hearing loss and the school will ensure that he is assessed using a method that cares for this disability. There are also two children in the class that need learning support and the teacher only receives four SLSO hours each day. The assessment methods used will also help the children improve their technology usage in the classroom since the school has an interactive smart board. The Internet will be used sometimes to help children develop their learning.

Methods of assessment

Assessment will be done formally and informally. There are five methods of assessment that will be used:

1. Diagnostic- This type of assessment used to provide intervention opportunity and feedback. It helps a teacher determine the strengths, skills, weaknesses, and knowledge before issuing instructions (Australian Federation, 2017). An example of this method is “The Unit Pretest” whereby prior to starting to teach a particular unit, a teacher creates an assessment to find out what children understand about the topic.

2. Formative- Teachers use this method to improve the learning of the students. It is a collection of methods used by teachers to carry out an in-process assessment of the learning needs and the progress of a child during a unit or a lesson.an example of formative assessment is the observation that helps a teacher know what each student does and what they do not understand (Australian Federation, 2017).

3. Summative- This method is used to assess the learning of the students after completion of each unit or lesson by comparing their performance with some standards (Australian Federation, 2017). An example of a summative assessment is standardized exams such as SATs.

4. Formal- This is an assessment method that has some information that supports the conclusions that teachers make from test results (Australian Federation, 2017). A good example of this type of assessment is standardized tests.

5. Informal- Unlike formal, informal assessments do not have supporting data but they are performance and content driven. An example of the informal assessment is grading, a method used by teachers to assign a value to the work of a student (Australian Federation, 2017).

When and how feedback is provided to children and parent/care givers

Written assessment feedback reports will be sent home at the end of each term. Parents/caregivers will be sent a summative report of each term’s/year’s results based on your child’s understanding, skills, and knowledge that will be measured against the country’s education performance standards, social and personal development. Additionally, class newsletters, displays and learning presentations, and meetings with parents and students need arise, and display of class programs and achievements of students are ways that will be used provide feedback to parents/cares about the student’s learning progress. Teacher-parent discussions will be conducted after each end term exam. At this time parents will be invited to meet the class teacher to discuss about their children’s developments in order to identify the child’s strengths and the areas that need reinforcement and make plans for his or her progress.

How to get further information

If there is something to need clarification, contact the assistant principal via the school telephone number on 020 766 388.

Thank for spending your time to read this information sheet.

Exegesis

As far as education or learning is concerned, assessment or evaluation of students on what they have been learning is a central factor. According to my point of view it makes no sense for students to go through a course and finally fail to be evaluated. Assessment is the only way used by educators to monitor the progress of all students in class. According to NSW Education Standards Authority (2012), assessment helps teachers, students, and parents/guardians to gain a deeper understanding of what should be valued and where to focus the attention. This is because it helps teachers to learn more about each student’s thinking, understand, and abilities in class (NSW Education Standards Authority, 2012).

The mode in which assessment information is collected is a very determining factor. According to NSW Education Standards Authority (2012), the method used to collect assessment information should be focused on evaluating the depth and breadth of learning based on the interests, cultural backgrounds, linguistics, abilities, and needs of the students. The method that will used in the classroom assessment will care for all these considerations. Providing assessment feedbacks to the students and parents/caregivers is an integral part of learning assessment that helps all students understand all class subjects and provides them and their parents/cares with a clear platform on how to make effective improvements. Spiller (2009) argued that, providing students and parents with assessment feedback is consistently and strongly related to improved achievement than other assessment behavior.

 

References

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Spiller, D. (2009). Assessment: Feedback to promote student learning. Manuscript submitted for publication, The University of Waikato, The University of Waikato, Hamilton, New Zealand.

NSW Education Standards Authority (2012). Kindergarten – Year 6 assessment strategies. From: https://syllabus.bostes.nsw.edu.au/support-materials/k-6-assessment-strategies/

Australian Federation, (2017). Assessment modes and practices. From: https://federation.edu.au/staff/learning-and-teaching/curriculum/assessment/assessment-modes-and-practices

UNSW Australia (2015).Assessment Toolkit: Giving Assessment Feedback. From: https://teaching.unsw.edu.au/printpdf/537

 

 

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