Assistant Head Simon Butterfield emphasised the benefits for using ‘assessment for learning’ by demonstrating some great examples in an interactive #15MinForum.
The introduction of this assessment for learning tool was an action following an inspection back on the sunny south coast of England in his previous school.
Simon described how the students became empowered within lessons which enabled the teacher to facilitate the learning.
“Students became in charge of their own progress, they know exactly what they need to do.”
Examples were shared of good practice from several departments that Simon line manages. The language is linked directly to the IGCSE syllabus or KS3 subject curriculum. Key words and descriptors such as “consistent” are highlighted to show the differences as progress made. Students are encouraged in their peer and self-assessment to use the language used on the AfL sheet.
Of course all students must learn the same content of the syllabus. The easy to use AfL sheets allow students to be able to assess their current stage of progress and what they must focus to improve to make the next jump.
- Use the AfL per lesson or use it over a short period of time to cover a topic.
- Individual for each student.
- Use the AfL sheet to gauge the level of learning at the start of your lesson, that sets the pitch of your lesson and the differentiation needed to challenge each and every students.
Example of how to introduce this in your lesson by Simon.
- What do they know at the start of your lesson? Verbal tennis – a great starter to get a general idea of the knowledge through key words associated with the lesson to follow.
- Self-assessment sheet – what have you achieved or how much do I know already?
- Relate to the success criteria of the lesson.
- Use a range of questioning strategies to reinforce and confirm knowledge and understanding.
- Ask students to work with a peer – tell each other what their target is and how they will make progress next lesson.
- Questioning again to reinforce knowledge and understanding.
- Use strategies throughout your lesson to check understanding and their progress, model a good piece of work or an answer for others’ to assess their own understanding against.
Assessment for learning makes learning very clear to the students. You can break each assessment element down to match your lesson.
Students are fully aware of where they were at the start of the lesson and where they are at the end and the steps that they made to get there.
Tenby colleagues – if you would like to see Simon using this in his lesson please contact him to arrange an informal observation.