Wednesday, November 30, 2016

Practical Ideas for Classroom Formative Assessments

Our team is gearing up today for another session at our Common Core Cafe. Today we are will learn how to use cloud-based software which allows teachers to create assessments for students, building easy-to-use rubrics that can be shared with students and colleagues, collect web-based assignments, solicit feedback from parents or students and comment and share ideas with class. Teachers will learn how to use technology web based programs to facilitate formative and summative assessments. They will also learn how to use web-based services to manage class success, and improve student behavior and engagement by awarding and recording real-time feedback. I will be discussing the behavior management tool, Classdojo. Erica Silvia will teach how to use Google forms and David Keys will be presenting how to use Plickers in the classroom. We are looking forward to collaborating and learning together today! 

Here is the link for the online evaluation today

To access today’s slides, click HERE

What is it?
ClassDojo is a behavior management tool for the classroom. Each student has a profile, complete with their own avatar, to which teachers can assign positive and negative points (or 'dojos') throughout the lesson. The program can be operated by a teacher from their computer or tablet, and each time they award a point an (optional) sound plays to alert the class.
This information is then recorded on students' profiles so that it can be reviewed throughout the year. Parents also have logins so that they can view their child's achievements from home.
Where can I find it?
You can create an account on the ClassDojo website. It takes a few minutes to sign up as a teacher.

How much does it cost?

Start out by using ClassDojo to track class-wide progress toward behavioral goals. Use it like a high-tech marble jar: Points can be added or taken away depending on how the class is behaving. Help your class set goals and work toward rewards based on how many points they've earned. However, be careful to ensure that individuals aren't publicly singled out in negative ways. You can also use the system to monitor students' individual progress and look for behavioral patterns. In this sense, you could use ClassDojo as more of a high-tech behavior chart, with frequent assessments for each student.
At the end of class, consider how you'll display the behavior point totals for the day, either by class or by individual student. Be sure to utilize the built-in tools to communicate with parents, which can help bridge the gap between home and school. ClassDojo can also be incredibly effective as a teacher tool. Teachers who are concerned about privacy and don't want to make class behaviors public could privately use the app to track student behavior. The behavior reports would be very helpful for reporting!
Watch this video to see more ways you can use ClassDojo: 

The reason most teachers get behind innovative classroom technology is because, in some shape or form, the tool maximizes our output by minimizing our workload. Whether the tool saves us time, takes a step out of the process, or redefines the experience altogether, effective technology integration doesn’t just change our habits, it enhances the ones we already have.
The problem often lies in finding a tool that doesn’t fade with time, or take longer to learn than is a worthwhile investment. Google Forms is one of the rare web tools that can reach and benefit teachers regardless of curriculum, ability or need.

Google Forms can be used to collect information from respondents.  Maybe those respondents are students in your classrooms, maybe they’re other teachers in your building, maybe they’re parents of your students.  Regardless of who you want to collect information from, Google Forms is a simple and free tool that’s great for the job.

Provided you have a Google account, you can access Google Forms at
Aside from self-grading quizzes, Google Forms is also an excellent tool for collecting information of any kind.  It's great for if you’re looking for parent volunteers for your classroom, if you’re wanting feedback from your colleagues on what to cover at the next professional development, or basically any time you need to collect data that you’ll want to break down and analyze.

Overall, I’m a huge fan of Google Forms.  It was already a solid tool for education and now that they’ve added in the self-grading quizzes, it’s raised itself to a new level of usefulness.  If you’re looking to collect and analyze data of any kind, particularly if you’re wanting to send out formative and summative assessments that can be automatically graded for you, I absolutely recommend checking out Google Forms.

Additional Resources & Tutorials suggested by Ms. Erica Silva:

Click on these links for: 
      Pre-Made Google Form Templates for you to use tomorrow!

What is it?
It is a website & app combo that lets teachers collect real-time formative assessment data without students needing to have a device.

Why it's Equitable and Awesome!
It gives ALL students the opportunity to respond because all they need is their card, no phone or other expensive device needed. It eliminates embarrassment for getting questions wrong while still letting the teacher know who's getting it and who's not. No waiting for students to log in or needing to set up; simply pull up the app, have students pull out their cards and go!