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Sharing assessment & grading strategies that help students learn

One of the most common types of assessments used in the AFL classroom is the Exit Slip.  AFL teachers find this type of feedback helpful as they assess how successful their lessons are, as they gather data for differentiation purposes, and as they seek to better meet student needs.

The following picture is one used by a teacher at Salem High School.  She actually found it on Pinterest - one of the world's great educational resource depositories for sure!  Take a look at the exit slip and then scroll down to see more about how it is used.

Notice how this exit slip gives students very direct guidance as to what feedback they should leave.  Typically, this will lead to more productive and useful information than an open-ended question will.  Also, notice the Standards Based component of this specific exit slip.  Students are asked to rate/evaluate themselves on what is essentially a 1-4 scale.  This is helpful for moving students away from purely looking at progress in terms of the accumulation of points for the numerator and instead to thinking in terms of mastery.  However, you will need to train them on what the terms mean.  Below are descriptions of novice, apprentice, practitioner, and expert that need to be taught to students.  Once taught these terms, it would make sense for students to be asked to use them for many types of assessments.

Finally, here's an idea for how you could collect the Exit Slips.  Take a look at the picture below.  By having students place their Exit Slip into the appropriate folder, the teacher saves time gathering data on how the class as a whole is doing.

Note: The terms used on the Board below are different from those used on the Exit Slip above.  The pictures did not come from the same source.  However, the concepts align well.

So what do you think?  How could you apply these concepts and ideas to your classroom?  Are you already doing something similar?  What have you found works well or doesn't work well?  Have you made modifications to improve the practice?

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Comment by stephen owen kitchen on October 22, 2014 at 3:10pm

Great way to end class, just as Do Nows are to start. Self Evaluations have always been a good tool . At times the self evaluator may be tougher on himself than the evaluator.( guidance dept)

Comment by Emily on October 22, 2014 at 3:09pm

Great idea! I have done a similar thing using a Google form, which dumps info into a spreadsheet.  Then you can easily sort students into differentiated groups. 

Comment by Jenn Shannon on October 22, 2014 at 3:09pm

I like having students put their heads down and then rate themselves 1, 2, or 3.  One represents that they feel that they have mastered the concept; two represents that they have an understanding, but still need assistance; three represents that they feel lost in regards to the concept.

Comment by Justin Halterman on October 22, 2014 at 3:07pm

Response from Justin, Sarah, Robyn, Amy, Thad, Anton

 We have all tried similar activities like this before.  A good way to summarize material learned, and help prepare for the following day's discussion.  Also a wonderful tool for self-evaluation by the students.  We have run into difficulties in reviewing the exit slips.  They often create a large amount of paper to read through, and we often had difficulty submitting through electronic means due to log-in and connectivity issues.  

Comment by Kristi Vernon on October 22, 2014 at 2:02pm

I use a similar approach in the music classroom by having the students hold up a finger 1 - 4 to indicate how well they know a section or a piece of music. Perhaps an exit slip where they indicated specific pages and measures they need review, and/or overall music criteria like, breath support, diction, phrasing, intonation, expression etc...

Comment by Rebecca Bush George on October 22, 2014 at 12:38pm

I think this approach to exit slips is particularly good at the start of new material. The on-site sorting can also help immediately group students into collaborative units.  Students aren't always good at "knowing what they know" or don't know, so more specific exit slips or Socrative, for example, might help the teacher accurately assess  the student take-aways for the day.

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