Let’s Sum It Up this week… refocusing our lens on “Empowered Environments”
How do you view assessment? Is it a tool? A grade? An outcome? Is it yours to fulfill? To steer? or is it your students?
Let me be blunt with the help of A.J. Juliani and John Spencer, authors of EMPOWER (paraphrasing their points)…
In place of being committed to your curriculum, are you committed to student interest?
Do you create plans based on choice or are you inspiring possibilities?
Bottom line is that my professional responsibility is to teach the skill… many skills to many different types of learners. I don’t take that lightly. My professional responsibility is to also create an environment to which every learner is opening doors to their learning… to their interest. This is not about just differentiating their learning, it is about lighting a fire under each of them so that they in turn can choose how they want to show me that they mastered the skill. I am turning “the possible” into “possibilities” just by shifting the focus from me to them!
When I taught internal conflict during my most recent novel study, students had to choose a quote and create a way for me to assess their understanding. I had students creating on Scratch, i Movie, Squishy Circuits, Design and Challenge in Maker-space, Bloxels and more. I wasn’t flustered about the variations in creativity. I wasn’t concerned about how I was going to put a grade in the grade book.
I knew the skill they needed to master… and so did my students!