Why formative assessment for flipping?
Flipping your classroom isn’t just about sending students home with videos to take notes from. It’s about unleashing your ability as a teacher in the classroom now that you have bought yourself some time during lessons. I find that the most difficult part of the flipped learning concept is not making the videos or finding the time, but in fact the challenges I am faced to continuously develop more and more engaging pedagogies to use in the classroom.
Enter formative assessment. Briefly, formative assessment is assessment that occours in the classroom where teachers can get almost immediate feedback from students about their understanding. It can be as simple as a student raising their hand to as complex as students participating in game based assessment.
With the influx of technology available, formative assessment has not only become easier but a lot more fun and engaging for students to partake in. It is important to assess your students understanding of the content you have sent home for them. Taking notes is one thing but being able to recall this information and begin to apply it is another. Formative assessment tools which rely on technology provide teachers with immediate feedback as to where the class and or students are having difficulty grasping concepts.
It is essential that you collect the data from formative assessment and use it. And I mean really use it – don’t just sit back and go oh 70% of my class got most of the questions right – have a look at what they got wrong – maybe the whole class got the same question wrong, maybe some of the students didn’t do their notes?
This is where the challenging part comes in – as a teacher you need to be flexible. Once you know the pinch points from the homework, expand on these. Be creative when you do this, don’t just stand out the front of your classroom and repeat what the students have already heard in the classroom – ask questions, ask students to share what they know about the topic and discover the missing pieces as a whole class.
In my classroom – only those who have done their homework are allowed to ‘play’ when they enter the room. This, I have found to be a great incentive for students to complete their homework as they do not want to miss out on all the ‘fun’.
Formative assessment Tools
There is a wide range of formative assessment tools with more becoming available on a regular basis. Below are some of my go to tools – especially the collaborative tools.
Plickers is a fun and fast formative assessment tool which requires students to use QR codes to answer multiple choice questions, only the teacher needs a device. More info
Ed Puzzle allows you to embed questions within a pre existing video which students answer as the video progresses. More info
Kahoot is a game based formative assessment where students compete against each other to score points for the speed and correctness of their answer. More info
Quizlet allows you to create a plethora of quizzes from pre determined questions. Quizlet Live is where the magic happens! Students collaborate on answers together to race against other teams. More info
Tips for using formative assessment
- Use game based formative assessment as a reward to students who have completed their homework
- Get students to create their own quizzes which can be shared with the rest of the class
- When using Quizlet live, show the class the questions they struggled with and have them revise their answers
- Use digital and game based assessment sparingly rather than every lesson, you don’t want to overkill the effect of the ‘fun’ factor