Formative Assessment

Using technology has made it easier for teachers to use Formative Assessment in their classroom.  Formative assessment is assessment used to inform your instructions. This type of work should never be used for giving students final grades. We as teachers, must be aware of how easy we can fall into only using these technology tools for Summative Assessment.

Sites such as Schoology and Socrative have ability to create questions for students to answer, but be careful not to use only for generating a “mark”.  These sites give percentages which are not useful in giving teachers directions to plan. Knowing if you need to readdress a concept helps in the planning of future activities. In Google Forms, teachers can create surveys which give immediate feedback to teachers, without generating an individual percentage mark.

Other Formative Assessment Ideas:

  1. Posting “Big” Questions on forums or sites such as allows students to answer questions and ask questions anonymously.
  2. Using Kidblog to have students publish their work. Teachers and students can give descriptive feedback, as comment, to their peers.
  3. When sharing “Word” documents electronically, insert descriptive feedback, using the Comments feature.
  4. Continue to use the BC Performance Standards with students for self assessment.
  5. Use collaborative writing sites such as Type with me or Primary Pad to have students collaborate on a document.  These sites allow students to “Chat” as they write.  Encourage the chat to be structured around the writing.
  6. Use Applications where students can record themselves explaining their understanding, such as Notebook, Inspirations, or iPad Apps such as ScreenChomp or Show Me.

Check out Stacey Stevens Crossroads Blog about Formative Assessment

Collaborative Writing

One of the big ideas in the WWP is the belief that writing is social and collaborative.  Students generate creative pieces when they have an opportunity to share their ideas and build on other’s thoughts.  When students collaborate with writing, they have opportunity to expose themselves to different styles.  They get to see examples of “good” writing techniques.  There are a variety of ways to say “Mary ran into the classroom”.  As teachers we can introduce more complex language and sentences, but then sometimes, they just don’t get.  When they see their peers using a variety of words and sentences, it is almost learning by osmosis.  Try using this online site to create collaborative works.

Instructions to students

  1. One student goes to
  2. Give your Pad an unique “easy” name (madeupname)
  3. Have partner(s) type in URL
  4. Begin the writing
  5. One student exports the work at the end of the writing session.


Expectations for laptops and writing

It is our intention that teachers in WWP would be having students handwrite only the grade 6 cold write. We do this so that the assessment is about their writing and not their typing skills. That may change in the future depending on student’s abilities especially as more have had opportunities to work with laptops in grade 5, but this is not the case everywhere.

After that grade 6 cold write we ask that teachers have the students do their rough drafts, editing, and final drafts on the computer. There are many very good strategies for pre-writing, writing, editing, peer-editing etc,  that we expect are done on the computer. If you need help with these please get in touch with Toni about a session.

We would expect that classrooms would be using the laptops 2-3 hours per day late winter for writing or other curricular uses.