Greetings All! Welcome back for another week of GRS class reflections, and another week in the world of chemistry! Today’s element is Manganese, which is responsible for the brilliantly purple color of the permanganate ion as well as a diverse group of other oxidation states and colors.

Potassium Permanganate Crystals for Disinfecting

Tonight we talk about assessment and the importance it plays not only in unit design but also in redesign and revisitation.

Andrea began our class with a few well-timed words of wisdom, talking about reflection as a critical component of teaching -> always want to be reflecting during and after our lessons and using this to revise our unit plans, designs, and materials. This became an important point from our readings and discussion, where we saw assessment used as part of this reflection piece.  

We then began with our dilemma for the evening: Students who don’t meet the lab requirement of 1200 lab minutes by June 1 for Regents sitting. 

(For those of you like me who were wondering, 30 1 hour labs = 1200 minutes).

How do we make sure that capable students meet this goal?

Strategies Brainstormed By Team:

  • Put in extra time to help students be successful (after school, flexible options for support).
  • Make participation in lab be a major component of minutes.
  • Give grade reports with specific progress towards labs.
  • Develop student-led lab tracking folders.
  • Do not have labs go home, or have home learning be a separate part of labs.

Paige suggested that support is very critical for helping students meet these goals: after school, during lunch, great ways to give students flexible options for support. 

Sharon shared an interesting perspective (that I also echoed): This is the teacher’s problem, not the student’s. How can we better set our students up for success in these arenas? 

Next we moved on to a revisitation of the Danielson Framework. Our notes were:

-> used in observations -> administrator perspective.

-> sometimes giving more control for the teacher, lets them pick a class that will highlight a particular aspect of their teaching (good or bad).

-> pre-observation -> sometimes the observation document pre-filled out, sometimes a meeting.

Domain 1 -> Planning and Preparation

Domain 2 -> Classroom Environment

Domain 3 -> Instruction

Domain 4 -> Professional Responsibilities

This lens provided to us by the Danielson rubric allowed us to examine our:

LIT CIRCLE: Earl Reading

Different types of assessments were examined in this literature circle: assessments of, for, and as learning.

Christa: Assessment as learning -> wants to be student driven.  How do we ensure that students are accurately self-assessing?

Sharon: Not learning for the student, but learning for the teacher.  Teachers can then revise and plan based off of that assessment. 

We then used Danielson Framework 1.f, looking for Evidence from Earl Reading, which was all about the use of assessment in planning lessons.  

BREAK TIME!

On to assessments: the meat of this time was used to give us all the opportunity to reflect on our assessments we’ve been planning and implementing in our innovative units.  Each person was given 5 minutes individual time to reflect on assessments based on Danielson 1.f, and then to work with a partner and share plans, resources, and suggestions.  

After this, Daniel shared out his ponderings & proposals for this week.  His question for all of us to consider centered around working with a diverse team of professionals in the workplace and how to best support other teachers.  I will leave the rest up to Daniel for this one!

Finally, we considered the effects of student involvement in assessment, first watching the following video:

https://www.teachingchannel.org/videos/show-your-cards-student-assessment

Check it out, it actually raised some very rich and interesting debate amongst our teaching cohort! See what you think and let us know your response!

Well folks, that’s all she wrote for this evening. Take care, good night, and good luck!

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