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Philosophy of Assessment

Brittany Everett

When students think of assessment, some things that may come to mind are former

stressful times, impractical testing and unnecessary pressure. As a teacher, I really hope to get

rid of any of these negative views associated with assessment. I personally believe that

assessment should not be about fitting a student into a certain category, it should be about

assessing a student in ways that eliminate stress and monitors where they are in their learning

process. Rather then simply passing or failing a student, I believe in providing that student with

descriptive feedback to help with their understanding. Assessing students should happen with a

mixture of both formative and summative paired with self and peer assessment.

Formative assessment is a very important aspect of teaching. For me, formative

assessment may be the most important type of assessment that a teacher can do for their

students. Formative assessment allows teachers to use various methods of assessing their

students, allowing each and every students individual learning style to be able to shine through

making sure that every student can show the teacher their understanding in many different ways.

Some formative assessment ways I would incorporate into my teaching are exit slips, checklists,

conferencing, portfolios and mini presentations within a larger unit. These applications of

formative assessment provide a way that I can interact with my students progress of learning by

engaging in the process along the way with them. By completing formative assessment, I have

the ability to monitor a childs progression throughout the year who may be struggling in a

specific area.
Summative assessment is one area that has been used widely throughout the past. I

believe that summative assessment is crucial for pinpointing the grand understanding of a class.

However, I believe that as teachers we have the responsibility to give every child with different

learning styles the ability to show their understanding in a variety of different forms. This is why

I would like to implicate a method of summative assessment that does not only include the typical

pencil and paper summative method. I believe giving students a general choice in how they want

to demonstrate their understanding is crucial. This allows teachers to get an accurate reading of

each individual students comprehension by giving them a choice in how they wish to present

their understanding.

Peer assessment I believe Is something that can be used widely in the upper Elementary

level. By allowing students to give constructive feedback to their peers, it allows each one of

them to understand that feedback is critical but helps them reach their goals. By students giving

feedback to one another, their learning is self induced and allows them to seek higher in depth

learning then without having their peers giving feedback.

Regardless of any type of assessment, I firmly believe it is my responsibility to provide my

students with constructive feedback. Constructive feedback is important to help students reach

their goal of education. By providing constructive feedback to my students through conferencing

and written feedback, I believe I will be able to give my students more insight on where they are

going and help them expand their learning. I believe it is important that students be given the

choice to re-do assignments and rewrite tests. Learning takes time and is part of growth, students

need the ability to check their mistakes and learn how they can make it better.
Overall I believe that learning is wholly about growth and learning from your mistakes. As

Myron Dueck mentions, providing students with the opportunity to re-write their assessments is

very important to encourage continuous learning and improvement (2011). As a teacher, I want

my students to reflect on their work. I am a firm believer that formative assessment is the most

important type of assessment a teacher can provide for their students. Formative assessment

allows the teacher, parents and the students to see growth in their work and get a good

understanding of where that child is on their learning journey. Summative assessment is crucial

for understanding class standings and guiding the teacher in direction. However, in my class

summative assessment would not be completed focused on pencil and pen testing, I would

provide my students with various ways of representing their knowledge in a way that suits them.

Dueck, M. (2011). How I broke my own rule and learned to give retests. Educational

Leadership, 69, 3, 72-75.