Teachers and Educators’ Role in Assessment for Continuity of Learning – Step 4
Selecting assessment models is an important step that early years educators and school teachers can take when creating a comprehensive and aligned assessment system to ensure continuity of learning.
STEP 4: SELECTING ASSESSMENT MODELS
Continuity of learning depends on early years educators and school teachers creating a comprehensive and aligned assessment system – this is essential across both early learning and school settings. Below we highlight one of five steps identified within our ‘Towards Continuity of Learning: Rethinking Assessment’ publication that can be undertaken to achieve this.
Meaningful assessment involves thoughtful choices on the part of professionals among the many purposes, types, methods, and instruments available. Good practice means focusing on a few meaningful learning outcomes along learning pathways, connected to specific, beneficial purposes. Procedures to assess and monitor children’s learning and inform pedagogy are refined over time.
Within practice, the issue is not a lack of assessment methods, rather it is the freedom and ability to work with the right tools. At a leadership level, changes may be required to empower school teachers and early childhood educators with choice – both in terms of the types of tools and the number of assessments undertaken.
The following table summarises the broader shift required in very simple terms.
Example: Direct assessment of individual children from Frankston CKP Kindergarten
Over the course of the first week of each term, each child has a turn with the early childhood teacher to do a self-portrait. The teacher also takes a photo that shows how the child is holding and manipulating a pencil. Depending on the child’s skills, the teacher may print the child’s name or ask the child to print their own name, noting evidence of emergent or early literacy skills. The teacher points to the self-portrait the child completed three months earlier, often pointing out the changes over three months.
Several skills one can be systematically assessed against a set of specified learning outcomes – assessment of learning. The teacher has concrete evidence that can inform planning learning experiences in the new term – assessment for learning. The self-portraits are included in each child’s portfolio and are valuable documentation of children’ learning that can be shared with families. Children can see the concrete evidence of their own learning – assessment as learning.
To learn more about the steps early years educators and school teachers can take to create a comprehensive and aligned assessment system, download our free publication Towards Continuity of Learning: Rethinking Assessment HERE