Student engagement, formative assessment, & critical thinking

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Basis of a workshop on, yep, you guessed it, student engagement, formative assessment, and critical thinking.

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  • Notes
    Thanks to Steven Covey for reminding us that we need to be thinking of “the end” as we design lessons
    We also need to be thinking about the end—how students can be successful in achieving or mastering our learning objectives or learning targets
    That thinking informs the choices we make for and about strategies, assessments, student engagement, etc.
    Perhaps it should also take into consideration that we don’t want learning to end when the bell rings
  • Last time we talked about student engagement and what that means, what you hope to see and hear when you visit a classroom
    We all need to remember that students to hear and experience something more than once for it to “stick”
    Persistence or grit or perseverance matter
    Angela Maiers has a nice overview of student engagement based on the alphabet; again, someone worth following on Twitter
    Now you might ask why I have sales statistics here but note that only 2% of sales are made on the 1st contact. It takes 5 to 12 contacts to complete 80% of the sales. Sure, the sales rep may wear you down by then, but it may also take that many times for the message to stick, for you to have heard or seen about the concept or product enough times to feel confident in it. Not quite the same as teaching I know, but the concept of stickiness is relevant as we think about the number of times our kids need to be exposed to a new idea, a new concept, a new theorem, a new anything for it to stick, for them to make sense of it, for them to integrate that learning with the rest of their learning
  • 1992. So we’ve been talking about student engagement and what it is for a long time. I wanted to revisit student engagement because it’s not just student behavior, but what drives or motivates them to be engaged.
  • Do you agree with these goals? Why or why not?
    Is “How do we cultivate these drives in the classroom?” the right question?
  • Read each point or give a summary.
    Ask for any responses to the last question: what prevents students from understanding expectations?
    Based on answers, see if there is a way to connect back to the student engagement quotes though you may be able to refer forward to formative assessment and/or critical thinking. It’s likely that lack of clarity or lack of specificity or even lack of repetition gets in students’ ways of understanding expectations.
    Refer to worksheet. Give them a few minutes to discuss and complete the chart. Ask folks what they might want to highlight.
  • Refer to handout: have them look at the choices at the bottom of the 1st page and discuss with a colleague.
    Then discuss with everyone. You may want to ask them what 3, 4, and 5 might look like, what the experience might be for the students
    Then go to the next page of the handout; the next several slides help review those pages
  • Refer to the handout; this and the next few slides focus on the concept of assessment for learning
  • Elaborate as you are so inclined on this and the following related slides
  • So we’re talking about the relationships between these three and how they help inform what we do in the classroom
    Look at page 3 of the handout. Lots of ways to talk about these, but remind them that student engagement, formative assessment, and critical thinking are experienced differently in each of the options and that each of the options could have value in a classroom and that, in some cases, both might be necessary for students to demonstrate proficiency
  • Just show this, perhaps read it
  • Ask folks to respond to the apparent expectations of this page.
    Click to show the chart and ask how they might score (1 to 5 with 1 as lowest and 5 as highest) each of these components based on the apparent expectations of this page.
    Not to say this kind of work is bad or wrong because it does have it’s place, but educators need to think about expectations for learning and correlation to standards as well as options for problem solving and critical thinking
  • Similar questions for the previous slide. It’s important to recognize there are degrees of difficulty here and there is, again, the importance, of being able to complete the fundamental tasks of reading the graph and having the skills and knowledge to write the coordinates of each point
    Have folks “score” the degree of each element in the chart, 1-5
  • Show the first box of the geometric figures. Ask if those seem more complex than the prior slide? What seems to make them more complex, or not?
    Then show the 2nd box and ask if and how that makes any difference to the way they view the figures.
    Then ask them to think about if and why student engagement or critical thinking might be scored higher than the prior slides and what they might do with the formative assessment component
  • Ask them to work at their tables to discuss and then share out
  • Now it’s time for the handouts. Ask them to skim and scan the History of Kites handout
    What do they think is the reading level, and why?
    What caught their attention as they were skimming, and why?
    Have them discuss how this handout might be used at various grade levels and in what ways in could engage students, help them achieve standards, and develop their critical thinking
    Have them look at the sled kite handout and review it. Have them comment on and discuss the lesson plan suggestions, how they might amplify those lessons and extend them, perhaps, to other content areas given the other handout
    Ask them how doing geometry problems or working with geometric shapes at various grade levels, thinking about the history of kites and working with the sled kite or some other kite might further learning
  • Student engagement, formative assessment, & critical thinking

    1. 1. Student Engagement, Formative Assessment, & Critical Thinking 1
    2. 2. Welcome Elaine J. Roberts, Ph.D. dr.ejroberts@yahoo.com ejroberts@p20partners.com Twitter: @elainej Skype: ej_roberts 2
    3. 3. Objectives • Examine specifics of – Student engagement – Formative assessment – Critical thinking • Examine how student engagement, formative assessment, and critical thinking complement each other • Examine how student engagement, formative assessment, and critical thinking can be transformative for learners 3
    4. 4. What is “the end” in mind? 4
    5. 5. Student engagement 5
    6. 6. Student engagement occurs when “students make a psychological investment in learning. They try hard to learn what school offers. They take pride not simply in earning the formal indicators of success (grades), but in understanding the material and incorporating or internalizing it in their lives.” Newmann, F. (1992) Student Engagement and Achievement in American Secondary Schools. Teachers College Press. 6
    7. 7. Students who are engaged in their work are energized by four goals—success, curiosity, originality, and satisfying relationships. How do we cultivate these drives in the classroom? Strong, R., Silver, H.F., & Robinson, A. (1995). Strengthening Student Engagement: What Do Students Want (and what really motivates them)? Educational Leadership, 53(1): 8-12. 7
    8. 8. Criteria for success • How do you identify, describe, define, and/or explain criteria for student success for any lesson plan? • How do you articulate how you measure that success? • How do you make your expectations clear to your students? • What prevents students from understanding your expectations? 8
    9. 9. Formative assessments 9
    10. 10. Which of the following describe the purpose or characteristics of formative assessment? •Monitor student learning to provide ongoing feedback •Used by teachers to improve teaching •Used by students to improve their learning •Help students identify their strengths and weaknesses •Help students identify target areas that need work •Help teachers recognize where students are struggling to address problems immediately •Generally low stakes 10
    11. 11. Which of the following describe the purpose or characteristics of formative assessment? •Monitor student learning to provide ongoing feedback •Used by teachers to improve teaching •Used by students to improve their learning •Help students identify their strengths and weaknesses •Help students identify target areas that need work •Help teachers recognize where students are struggling 11 to address problems immediately •Generally low stakes
    12. 12. Assessment for learning • Formative assessment serves as practice for students, including meaningful homework • Supports learning in two ways – Teachers can adapt instruction on the basis of evidence, making changes and improvements that will yield immediate benefits to student learning. – Students can use evidence of their current progress to actively manage and adjust their own learning. (Stiggins, Arter, Chappuis, & Chappuis, 2006) • Assessment for learning consists of anything teachers do to help students answer three questions (Atkin, 12 Black, & Coffey, 2001)
    13. 13. Where am I going? • Make sure students have the learning targets and understand the expectations for success in accomplishing or reaching each target • Provide students with models, rubrics, or some sort of guide to know what success might look like 13
    14. 14. Where am I now? Design activities and formative assessments that enable students to self-monitor their progress in achieving the learning targets Provide opportunities for students to explore beyond the confines of the specific learning targets – Hold them accountable for the specific learning targets – Hold them accountable to explain how their explorations matter, and why 14
    15. 15. Where am I now? Design activities and formative assessments that enable students to self-monitor their progress in achieving the learning targets Provide opportunities for students to explore beyond the confines of the specific learning targets – Hold the students accountable for the specific learning targets – Hold the students accountable to explain how their explorations matter, and why 15
    16. 16. Where am I now? (continued) • Provide a mechanism for students to track their success in reaching the learning targets; make sure they are able to explain how they know they have been successful • When students struggle to reach learning targets, help them identify their strengths as well as where they need improvement 16
    17. 17. How can I close the gap? When students identify their strengths and where they need improvement, help them create a plan for improvement in those target areas Help students use formative (and summative assessment) feedback to set goals Enable students to create structures to track or graph their progress 17
    18. 18. How can I close the gap? (continued) Provide students with opportunities to comment on their progress as well as their struggles – What is hard that used to be easy? – What is easy that used to be hard? – What is still hard? – What have they noticed about their learning habits? – What encourages them and what discourages them? – What else can they do to try to improve as learners? – What would they like you to help them do to try to improve as learners? I feel happy of myself 18
    19. 19. Student engagement Formative assessment Critical thinking 19
    20. 20. • Let’s assume you have a rubric for scoring – Student engagement – Formative assessment – Critical thinking 20
    21. 21. Student engagement Formative assessment Critical thinking 21
    22. 22. Student engagement Formative assessment Critical thinking 22
    23. 23. In 1899, Wilbur Wright designed this controllable kite to test the aerodynamic control system he would later use in gliders and airplanes. Student engagement Formative assessment Critical thinking 23
    24. 24. What do student engagement, formative assessment, and critical thinking have in common? 24
    25. 25. Go fly a kite 25
    26. 26. In what ways can student engagement, formative assessment, and critical thinking be transformative for learners? 26
    27. 27. Reviewing “the end” and planning ahead 27
    28. 28. Next steps • Identify your 3 next steps • Explain why these are your 3 next steps • Establish a deadline for each of your steps • Remember the 80/20 rule – Of all the tasks performed throughout the day, only 20 percent really matter. – Those tasks in the 20 percent very likely will produce 80 percent of our results. • Discuss with others for accountability 80/20 rule aka Pareto’s Principle 28
    29. 29. 29
    30. 30. Student Engagement, Formative Assessment, & Critical Thinking 30
    31. 31. Elaine J. Roberts, Ph.D. dr.ejroberts@yahoo.com ejroberts@p20partners.com Twitter: @elainej Skype: ej_roberts 31
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