Research and Assessment EDUC 5013S Kaitlynn Cirone 250949299

Here is my final thoughts reflection of our Research and Assessment course.

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Research and Assessment EDUC 5013S Kaitlynn Cirone 250949299 by Mind Map: Research and Assessment EDUC 5013S Kaitlynn Cirone 250949299

1. Research and Assessment as Human Activities

1.1. Project Canvas: Improving student learning: This experience working in groups to investigate a topic was very practical. Our group chose to look at student engagement. Using this as an example for how you would go about solving a problem and the steps you would take gave me many different ideas for how I would approach an issue in my own classrooms. Some example ideas for helping with student engagement are learning about student interests, finding out whether the content is too simple or too difficult for the students, and incorporating technology to make learning more fun. The Project Canvas is also a great way to look into student needs. Using this platform I can write down my observations of the students and then brainstorm ways I can meet my students' needs.

1.2. Feedback: Feedback is a way we can help students improve their learning in a humanely and individualized way, but is also an integral part of the "messages in, messages out" process and output.

1.3. One thing I will start doing: Bento Box -My favourite part of this course was filling our Bento Box each week. This gave me many ideas for how I can enhance student learning.

1.3.1. My favourite ideas from the Bento Box are: -Parking Lot: I really like how students can anonymously write down questions that they may have about a concept during an activity. -Dotmocracy: This gets students more involved in their learning, in expressing their opinions and having input in what they are learning. -Analogy: I find this is a clever way to promote critical thinking and creativity. I used analogies to teach different parts of a cell and students had to come up with their own to help remember the role of each part. -Memes: I also have used memes in my teaching experience. After having students brainstorm examples of each learning skill, I had them create memes to showcase their examples. -Start-Stop-Continue: I love this idea and have used similar formats as exit tickets. This works well to see what your students' thoughts are on your class, what they think should be changed, what they like about your class, and suggestions for new things that can be implemented into the classroom.

1.4. Teaching through stories: -I believe that sharing our own experiences with our students helps to create a more welcoming and inclusive classroom. -Providing opportunities for students to share their stories and experiences can also make students feel more comfortable in your class, but also makes them more engaged and wanting to participate.

1.4.1. One way I encourage story telling is through community circles. When I was in my last practicum, I tried to start and end each week with a community circle. This gave students a chance to share something interesting going on in their life, express something that they are looking forward to, etc. I would usually start the conversation by asking a general question and letting students continue by sharing what they want.

2. Messages In, Messages Out

2.1. Creating a variety of assessments: From the activities we did in our course, I gained many new ideas for implementing different kinds of assessment. Input: diagnostic-Formative, pre-teaching Process: Formative- observations Satisfaction: Formative- Feedback Output: Summative-Evaluation

2.1.1. Global Competencies: I believe these competencies reflect the skills that students will need after high school better than the learning skills. Certain learning skills, such as independent work and self-regulation, were either difficult to assess or define. https://www.cmec.ca/682/Global_Competencies.html Here are the global competencies and an example of a task that I have used in my own experience for each. -Critical thinking and problem solving- Looking at different perspectives of Canadian history in the 1700s, such as the European settler perspective and the Indigenous perspective. -Innovation, creativity and entrepreneurship- Students create a product and market it to the class (like a Shark Tank episode). -Learning to learn, self-directed learning- In French, students choose a topic that interests them. They have to set their own goals for what they want to learn about and they assess their progress throughout the task. -Collaboration- students participate in a team-building exercise where they must build a pyramid of cups using only elastics and string. -Communication- students will express their opinions on a debatable topic, such as whether the battle of Vimy Ridge should be considered the birth of our nation. -Global citizenship- Students conduct a passion project, where they must find something related to the curriculum that interests them, and they must bring it to the community, such as creating a public service announcement for a global issue.

2.1.1.1. One thing I will start doing: I plan to create tasks for students that will allow them to develop more than one global competency. These competencies are new to me as I have been following the learning skills during my practicum. Although they are fairly similar to learning skills, I want to find better ways to practice innovation, creativity and entrepreneurship, as well as global citizenship. Instead of needing to know facts, students need to be taught how to create, be innovative, and how they can connect what they are learning in class to the world. Simultaneously, students will become more engaged in activities that promote these skills because they can find something that they are passionate about in the process. An example of a lesson that incorporates all six competencies that I created with a group is one where students learn about different writing styles and perspectives and then have to recreate a story from a new perspective using multimodality. This task allows students to collaborate with peers in creating their perspective, to communicate their ideas, to think critically about the story and analyze it. It also allows students to be creative and innovative with their perspective, and gives them the freedom to direct their own learning in what they decide to do for their final product. At the end of the lesson, students reflect on their work and connect their perspective to real world news articles.

2.1.1.1.1. One thing I will stop doing: I plan to stop focusing on facts instead of skills when teaching. This can often be difficult in courses that are very content heavy, such as history. In my practicum experience, I had to be very creative to provide opportunities for students to develop their global competencies in history lessons. More often than not, lessons consisted of a lecture and then an activity where students could use what was taught during the lecture and apply it to show their understanding. These lessons did not promote critical thinking or innovation, as there is so much detailed information that needs to be understood before students can analyze and recreate. In the future, I plan to stop providing information directly to students, and instead provide students the tools and resources that they can use to discover the information themselves. I hope to provide more opportunities for students to question what they read and to compare perspectives of history.

2.2. Output: Evaluation

2.2.1. Triangulation of assessment: I have learned in this course that it is very important to use a variety of methods and strategies to gather evidence for student assessment. Here are the three sections of triangular assessment and an example for each: Conversational Evidence- student/teacher conferences Observational Evidence- anecdotal notes during a collaborative task Written Evidence- test, quiz, portfolio, essay

2.2.1.1. One thing I will start doing: I would like to focus more on conversational and observational evidence in the future, as I tend to focus on written evidence when I am evaluating students. When I think about evaluation, I think about ways students can submit their work, usually on paper or in the form of a presentation. I often forget about aspects of evaluation that are not evident on paper, such as checking in with a student to see how they are doing and providing oral feedback to them. I also hope to make more observational notes of my students to help evaluate learning skills/global competencies. As I have never written report cards and had to give a mark for learning skills, my mind is more focused on number grades for work they submit. If I can observe and make notes on how my students are progressing in their task, and how they are developing their global competencies, I will not only learn more about my students' needs, but I will also be better prepared to talk about their skills and evaluate them for report cards.

2.2.2. One thing I will start doing: I plan to do more moderated marking as a way to improve my assessment of students. During my next practicum I will have the opportunity to discuss how I assess a task with my Associate Teacher and to compare notes with each other. I also hope there will be opportunities to compare assessment techniques with colleagues and if possible, have opportunities to do moderated marking of students with colleagues to ensure validity and reliability.

3. Connecting High and Low

3.1. Growing Success: The fundamental principles http://www.edu.gov.on.ca/eng/policyfunding/growSuccess.pdf: I believe these are very important to create a welcoming classroom for students to learn and achieve. Here are the principles: -equitable for all -support all students -relate to curriculum and student needs -maintain clear communication between students and parents -variation of opportunities -ongoing descriptive feedback -develop students' self assessment skills

3.1.1. In my opinion, the most important fundamental principle is supporting all students. This is tied into equity for all as well as looking at student needs. I believe if you get to know your students and learn about what each student needs to succeed in terms of encouragement and support (including accommodations and resources), students can reach their potential and can have a much more enjoyable school experience.

3.1.2. One thing I will start doing MORE: After having made my resource tool on self-assessment, I would like to use self-assessment tools more often with my students. The task from this course was very practical and opened my eyes to new ways to teach self-assessment efficiently and new ways for students to conduct their self-assessment. Examples of self-assessment that I would like to use include: checklists that could be used throughout a larger task that would be divided into several parts; improvement rubric where students assess their progress from one task to another.

3.2. One thing I will start doing MORE: From my research I did to create my resource tool on self-assessment, I realized how important theory can be in my teaching practice. So much of what I read provided practical ways to integrate self-assessment into my classroom, which was supported by studies. In the future, I plan to use more research and theory to influence the way I teach.

3.2.1. One thing I will stop doing: In my experiences, trying new strategies for teaching has been a trial and error to see what works and what does not. Although this teaches me what I should not do in the past and what I should continue doing, I plan to look into the strategy or the issue that I am facing through research as opposed to guessing without knowing the pros and cons of the strategy so that I can gain a better understanding of what I am using in my classroom.

4. 3 Big Ideas from the course

4.1. One big idea that I learned from this course is there is an abundance of ways to assess students. Many of the ideas from the Bento Box work well as formative assessment, such as One Question Quiz, I see/I think/I wonder, and polling. By using triangulation of assessment. you can have a variety of evidence to use when assessing students, which will make your assessment more accurate. For example, having a conversation with a student about their progress can show a different side of the student and their abilities in comparison to a written assignment that they hand in.

4.2. I have also realized through this course how useful the Growing Success document is for teachers. Before this course, I had never read the document and did not know how practical its information is. Reading through it has changed my perspective of ministry documents. Other documents that I have had the opportunity to explore thanks to this course are the capacity building series. I was very unfamiliar with these helpful documents but quickly learned many strategies that I can use in the classroom.

4.3. Another thing that I learned is the importance of reflection. For example, reflecting on my personal experiences in assessment will help me assess my students better. My negative experiences teach me what I want to avoid doing with my students, whereas I can gain inspiration from my positive experiences. Moreover, teaching students to self-reflect improves their problem-solving skills, makes them more autonomous, and helps them learn about themselves and their needs. Reflecting on my teaching as well will help me improve my practice, including how I assess. I will be able to learn what strategies work best for my students and what types of tasks they prefer and strive on.