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Assessment Overview

J. H. Workman’s IB Middle Years School Programme

Assessment Overview

 Our Philosophy:

Effective assessment places students at the center of their learning and allows teachers to monitor student progress and adjust instruction to improve achievement  Beginning with our 6thgraders, it is important that our students develop attitudes towards assessment that encourage them to always give their best efforts to the task and set goals for the future.  Students in the MYP will be expected to manage their assessment and other deadlines more carefully. Cultivating discipline in meeting deadlines will be essential for managing the workloads our learners will face in high school- especially those associated with the IB Diploma Programme.

 

Assessment at Workman Middle is not based on what a student cannot do, but rather, on what they can successfully achieve at different stages of their development. Instruction and assessment are designed to help students determine what the next steps on their path to learning should be.

 

 Assessment Principles:

Frequent internal assessments and regular external assessments of curricular objectives using IB criteria and Florida’s State Standards provide evidence of assessing our students’ achievements. Assessment tasks are an important part of the learning process and should not be seen as distinct from, or outside of, other learning experiences. Assessment should aim to help the students understand what they know and understand at different stages of the learning process and should:

  • Be integrated into a diverse array of continuous learning activities
  • Support and encourage student learning by providing feedback
  • Promote student self-responsibility – working to deadlines, asking questions for clarification, recording tasks, timely submission of work     and acting on feedback
  • Affirm student success and progress
  • Inform and enhance teaching practices
  • Promote positive attitudes towards student learning
  • Promote a deep understanding of the content
  • Where appropriate, support student inquiries using the Areas of Interaction as a  authentic, real-world context
  • Where appropriate, respond meaningfully to the MYP Unit Question
  • Promote the development of higher order thinking and questioning skills
  • Support the MYP's Fundamental concepts of Communication, Holistic Learning and Intercultural understanding
  • Provide opportunities for self-reflection (and self-assessment) in support of the Approaches to Learning (ATL) Area of Interaction.

Evidence of Student Understanding:

To provide us with a clear picture of student achievements, a balance of formative and summative assessment activities is expected, as no one style of assessment will properly cover all the objectives of an MYP subject or appeal to the range of the diverse learning styles in our classrooms.

  Assessment of student's learning is ongoing and should make use of a variety of forms, including:

  • Quizzes
  • Tests/exams
  • Portfolios/Notebooks/Journals
  • Verbal responses
  • Presentations
  • Project-work including individual and group work projects
  • Class discussions
  • Group-work participation
  • Compositions
  • Performances
  • Peer assessment
  • Self assessment
  • The creation of solutions to problems
  • The creation of short films
  • Labs (Science, Math and Technology)

Formative Assessments:

 In the spirit of building healthy student attitudes towards assessment for learning, a range of purposeful formative assessment activities should always be used to develop student's skills, knowledge and understanding, leading into summative assessment tasks. Effective formative assessment is part of the instructional process and provides the timely information needed to adjust teaching programmes. Formative assessment actively involves students in the process, as they learn to self-assess, peer-assess and set goals based on their teacher's feedback. As part of this process teachers should provide:

  • Key Vocabulary Terms
  • Examples of student work
  • Scaffolded samples
  • Questions that uncover and expand student learning
  • Sample rubrics

Summative Assessments:

Summative assessment tasks are formal assessements that take place at the end of the teaching and learning process to assess a student's knowledge and understanding, usually against a fixed set of standards. They will be developed as part of the IB units and assessed with reference to the relevant MYP subject guide books and the MYP's Interim objectives. Assessment rubrics will be developed and applied to all summative assessment tasks. These rubrics should link the Assessment Criteria's level of achievement descriptors with task-specific clarifications, i.e. redrafting the value statements in the levels of achievement in specific reference to the work being assessed.

A well-constructed rubric should:

  • Support learning by providing clear guidance
  • Provide transparency to the process for students, their families and teachers
  • Provide clear, measurable evidence of learning
  • Be useful in curriculum review, in helping identify what content has been taught
  • Link generic descriptors to task-specific clarifications

Workman Middle School understands the value of teacher collaboration in developing the IB units, summative assessment pieces and task-specific rubrics. We encourage our teachers to share these rubrics with the students in the early stages of the unit to empower students by familiarizing them with the expectations of the task, leading them to greater understanding of the MYP assessment criteria.

 

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