Friday, March 20, 2015

5 Things Teachers Do After an Assessment

Assessments are a way to find out what students know.  It is important for teachers to use the data
from these assessments to enhance classroom instruction and improve student learning.  Here are 5 things that effective teachers traditionally do after an assessment has been given.



Record and Assess the Data.  


Spreadsheets are great, but go beyond with charts and visual representations of assessment data for a better understanding of students’ strengths and needs.

Communicate the Assessment Results with the Student’s Parents. 

  1. Pre-written assessment notes with fill in the blank spaces for individual assessment results are
    often used to save teachers time!  Make sure that these results remain private. Place the notes into individual student folders or staple closed with the students name on the outside. With ESGI, teachers save time with personalized parent letters that are created from the collected data. Click here to find out more about this time-saving parent connection!  
  2. Call parents to discuss assessment results.  Admittedly this takes more teacher time, but really helps make a personal connection with the family.  This method can be benefit or to highlight children who performed beyond expectations, have shown significant growth in an area, or need improvement.
  3. Scheduling and having an in-person conference to discuss assessment results.  This is often necessary if the results are significantly lower than expected. Teachers and parents can discuss home activities and in-class interventions to be used during this conference.  Keep in mind that not all parents can come in during school hours due to work and transportation challenges.

Plan for Individualized Instruction Based on the Assessment Results. 


If a child is struggling with decoding simple consonant-vowel-consonant words (cvc words) then a variety of hands-on phonics instruction may be needed.  ESGI's Class Totals Report shows the academic area that needs attention, additional lessons are most likely needed in that area for the whole group.  It may be helpful to work with your school’s curriculum coordinator or grade level team to strategize effective interventions with the resources and materials available to your classroom.

Implement Additional Instruction to Enrich or Remediate.  


Many teachers will pull small groups of students to a work station for instruction on a specific topic. Utilize parent volunteers, classroom aides, and college student interns for additional one on one activities and academic support.

Re-Assess After a Given Period of Time and Repeat Numbers 1-4.


Are you a Prek - First grade teacher or an Administrator interested in saving time with assessments? Register Here for a FREE 60 trial!

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Amanda Boyarshinov is an Early Childhood National Board Certified master teacher of Reading
Education K-12 and one of the bloggers behind the parenting and education site: The Educators’ Spin On It. She has worked as a teacher in diverse classrooms and has experience with English Language Learners.  She enjoys inspiring other parents and teachers worldwide through her creative, inventive writing. Her writing has been published in Parents Magazine, Sylvan Source, and Nat Geo online. 

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Blog: The Educators Spin On It 
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Friday, March 06, 2015

Sponge Time


As teachers, we know those special moments in the classroom in between activities when there is too
much time to transition to the next activity, but not enough time to really teach a full lesson.  These moments are the perfect time for the “sponge activities” that I remember learning about years ago when I first started teaching. Now that I am in my 35th year of teaching, these little sponges (fun, short and engaging) have become second nature to me. Here are some examples:

Movement

When we have five extra minutes it is a great time to get up and move.  We can sing along with a song, such as the ABC song, patriotic songs such as You’re A Grand Old Flag, or movement oriented songs like B-I-N-G-O.  The children love to sing and they love it even more when they can move by clapping their hands, stamping feet, marching, snapping or following movements that I begin, such as touching my head.  It is a great time to get in some bi-lateral movements and crossing the body activates both sides of the brain.  Vigorous clapping stimulates nerves in the hands and helps to “wake up” the brain and stretching to touch toes, twisting or reaching high really help to get the wiggles under control.  A great song is “Heads Shoulders, Knees and Toes” which combines movement, following directions and vocal modulation (leaving out words until the last verse is performed with the movements only).