These are satisfying times to assess the way I do. We’ve got Dead Week starting Tuesday, finals the week after that, and then grades are locked. Students are panicked, but the way I assess, they can focus that panic.
“How do I get my grade up?” they ask.
Otherwise I pull up their assessment scores in PowerSchool. Several completed concepts. Good.
3 out of 4 on Triangle Congruencies. Less good.
“Have a seat,” I say. “Let’s talk about it.”
Sometimes I’ll tutor them. Other times they come prepared, studied up, good to go. Either way, I’ll scribble down a one-question test on Triangle Congruencies. A decidedly un-scribbled example:
They pull a higher score. I immediately replace their grade and report the new percentage. Good times had by all.
The resource teachers are out on the prowl these days, too, trying to push their case kids through challenging courses. “What can Robbie do to pass?” they ask me.
I hand them a sample exam of every concept we’ve taken this semester. “If Robbie shows me he can pass Solving Proportions and Evaluating Expressions, I’ll forget the classwork and the homework he’s missed.”
I don’t make a huge deal of it, but I don’t care about the final either. By the end of Dead Week, I can tell you within a tiny margin how well every student knows every concept. Such is the power of this assessment strategy, that it renders even the largest test of the term inconsequential.