The Teacher Tip

Teach Students to Pursue Goals Through Self-Assessment

November 15, 2017

Adapted from Innovative Educators by Gretchen Morgan

Great teachers frequently help students know where they are going, how close or far they are from that destination, and what they can do to close that gap. To do this efficiently, teachers must assess their own teaching strategies.

Try evaluating your practice by asking your own questions of self-assessment:

  • What have I done to make the intended learning, the destination for this work, clear to my students?
  • What have I done, at the beginning and ongoing, to help students see how close or far they are from that destination?
  • What have I done to help students know how to get to the destination and close that gap?
  • Did my students get a clear picture of the intended learning? What have they done to get an accurate picture of how close or far they are from our intended destination? What choices have they made to engage in work, practice, or instruction to help get them closer to the goal?

The key idea of assessment for learning is to do everything possible to help students assess, track, and assign meaning to their performance and progress over time. It is always helpful for teachers to reflect on how they engage their own students in self-reflection. When students keep track of their own progress, they realize the proximity of their own goals.


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