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Tag Archives: assessment
Border region between Finland and Norway

Paradoxes of the Finland Phenomenon

Have you noticed there’s a lot of hullabaloo about Finland’s education system lately? I’ve been paying attention to what the Finns have been doing for a couple years now, but it is only after reading an essay by Sam Abrams and hearing him subsequently elaborate in a talk in Banff that I’ve thought to pay attention […]

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Collaboration Agent

This post is cross-posted from www.joebower.org Collaboration is a very important skill to have. If you are a teacher or parent, you know how cumbersome group projects can be. Sometimes the project itself is the least of our concerns. But is it possible to collaborate too much? I took some class time to show my […]

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Assessment Malpractice

Assessment is a hot topic in the teaching world, and I have noticed a real imbalance between the two different kinds of assessment. First, here are the two kinds:  Summative Assessment: This kind of assessment is done to assess a student’s skills and knowledge after the learning has taken place. This is a judgement that […]

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Rethinking Reliability

In our present day over-dependence on all things testing, teachers, parents and policy makers have developed many misconceptions about what test scores actually tell us. There are perhaps too many to name, and they are certainly too numerous to name here all at once; however, if you go through my blog’s archives, you might find […]

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Destructive Grading Schemes

Teachers have what seems like an infinite number of assessment schemes at their disposal, and unfortunately most of these schemes revolve more around managing grades than encouraging learning. Today, I wish to debunk a certain kind of scheme. Have you ever heard of a teacher who subscribes to this kind of assessment practice? Good morning […]

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The Folly of Rubrics and Grades

Before I abolished grades, I went through my rubrics stage. I was convinced I could solve my assessment problems if I could just fine-tune my rubric production. I struggled for months trying to create ‘student-proof’ rubrics that would allow me to consistantly assess their learning. I can’t say that the time I spent on rubrics […]

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Dualities, Shmualities

Our public forums teem with dueling dualities: Luke vs. Vader Booker vs. du Bois Optimus vs. Megatron Homework vs. None Fraiser vs. Ali Whole language vs. Phonics Nixon vs. Truth Skills vs. Content Cylons vs. Humans However, the latest iteration hits a bit too close to home to be anything besides unnerving for educators: Judging […]

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Dick Cheney: The New Inquisitor General of Education (parody)

Yesterday Arne Duncan, US Secretary of Education, named former Vice President Dick Cheney, Inquisitor General of Education.  In his new post, Cheney will head the Battling Remissness by Utilizing Tyranny in Education (or BRUTE) task force.  Their mission: Saving America from poor test scores. “This is a great opportunity for our children, and our schools, […]

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Assessment Overview: Beyond Standardized Testing

With the increased focus on standardized testing as the keystone and sole arbiter of student, teacher, school, and district accountability, discussions about practical and relevant assessment practices has become something of a fringe topic, at best. This video from Edutopia lays out not only the core concepts of meaningful assessment practices, it speaks to the […]

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Six Degrees of Integration: D.I.A.P.E.R. (It Contains Everything)

Let’s face it, as teachers and curriculum designers we sometimes find ourselves having to deal with a lot of you-know-what.  Containing the varying interests stinking up the place (including, but not limited to, administrators, parents, policy makers, our professional expectations of ourselves, and even students themselves) can be a challenge, at best.  At worst, it […]

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Teaching Teachers to Teach, er, I mean, Learn

What does it take to be successful? Ponder this question while trolling quote sites and you get a pretty good picture of what others think — preparedness, hard work, vision, stick-with-it-ness, determination, and the ability to turn challenges into opportunities. (It is curious to note that not one quote suggested needing to know a specific […]

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