Monday, November 24, 2014

Using data to drive instruction

Am I a pessimistic when I say that I don't agree with just looking at an end of grade test score or an SAT score and saying this student needs x,y, and z?  Maybe this comes from my history as a student that didn't score high enough on his ITBS and had to go to summer school in fifth grade....maybe its the fact that my life rarely consists of multiple choice problems.  Yes I do have, "I want to go out to dinner to either Boston Market, Panera, or Jet's Pizza", but I wouldn't call that a problem more of a luxury. 

I value the day to day assessments, the quick check/quiz, and multiple facet assignments.  I would like to see more using Interactive Clickers / response systems (socrative.com and   There are many applications that (IXL, Study Island) support students in a day to day, real life problem solving tool.  There are also companies that have devices (Scantron) that make it easy to score and analyze results. 

We need to continue to assess our students, programs, and teaching methods in a effective manner, but let's broaden our scope to more then just a one three hour test in May (or June for year round schools).  With constant discussion about students' progress (or lack of) we will be able to have a true picture of how effective our teaching really is or isn't for our students.