Informal & Formal Formative Assessment

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Two examples of formal assessments are state standardized achievement tests and selected response evaluations given in the classroom. The state standardized achievement tests measure on a more global level than the selected response, but both are designed to evaluate a student's knowledge after the lesson has been given. A selected response evaluation can be essays, projects, fill-in the blank or multiple-choice types of tests. They succeed in measuring what the student can recall from the previous lesson or lessons. They also help measure what the majority of the class has learned or not learned and will help the teacher prepare for the next year's lesson planning. These test types can be used by teachers and principals to help design a school-wide curriculum that will ensure all standards are covered for every child by the time they graduate. The state standardized achievement tests can be used to discuss where we are lacking in the education process and where we need to set standards for the future. These types of tests help guide the education system in a more comprehensive picture of what our students are retaining and compare that to other states or countries. Informal assessments offer a wide variety of times, places and avenues of assessing each student to their advantage. Some examples of informal assessments are assessment conversations, walk-around assessments, learning centers and student portfolios. Leticia Diaz is the student I am working with today. Leticia comes here from Portugal, she is a seventh grader, and Portuguese is the primary language used in the home. She moved here in the first grade so she does quite well in the written and spoken language of English. She is at what we call a Level 5 in her English proficiency. Her father and mother however are not as advanced in their learning of the English language. She states that at times it is hard to tell them what she is doing in school because of the language barriers. Leticia does however...
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