A Bit More on Descriptive Feedback!

This week’s Tuesday 12 post was on the topic of descriptive feedback.  We provided you with a variety of resources, but I forgot to include one! While browsing Pinterest (I really can’t stop!), I saw a great infographic that does an effective job summarizing descriptive feedback into one page.  When I read over this article, it gave me the idea to create a Tuesday 12 with a list of resources for descriptive feedback; however, I forgot to include the source of the inspiration!

Sept Cover_F.indd

Although I found this on Pinterest without a link to the original source, the article shows that the source is “The collective wisdom of authors published in the September 2012 issue of Educational Leadership: ‘Feedback for Learning.’ (Volume 70, Issue 1). Although I’ve never read Educational Leadership before finding this infographic, it seems to be an excellent resource and the September 2012 issue is devoted to descriptive feedback.

Computer Coding: An Essential Skill

We all wonder what our students and children will face in the future.  How will they be successful, what kind of work will there be for them, what skills are necessary to be able to be successful?  These questions are at the heart of everything we do!  We know that students need to be creative, able to problem solve and think critically.  Also, we know that our curriculum and our classrooms should be inclusive of technology.  But what about understanding where it all stems from?  What are we doing about that?  We need to realize that computer software coding is an essential skill that will be necessary for success. We need to be able to address this in our classrooms.

Here is a link to a wonderful video, where world class athletes, musicians and great business people, discuss the importance to this very skill.

Well, what does that mean for us? Visit the website www.code.org and find out how students can learn to code in elementary schools, how they can develop their critical thinking skills and problem solving skills. Share with us what you think and what you have tried.  It is never too late for anyone to learn to code!


The Tuesday 12: 12 Resources All About Descriptive Feedback!

In this week’s edition of The Tuesday 12, we’ll be looking at resources to help teachers understand and incorporate descriptive feedback on a regular basis.  Just click on the links below to be taken to the resource.

1. “Descriptive Feedback” (video)

If you haven’t yet had the opportunity to view the abundance of resources on the EduGAINS website, then I highly suggest you check it out right away! If you are struggling with assessment for and as learning, then this site has so many resources for your teaching and learning.

2. “Descriptive Feedback Fosters Improved Student Learning” (article)

This short two page article illustrates the importance of feedback by telling the story of one school’s journey to apply meaningful feedback (aside: this school is part of our board!).  Tips are given at the end to help teachers incorporate descriptive feedback in their classes.

3. “Descriptive Feedback at Winona” (blog post)

In this blog post, three different tools are used to provide descriptive feedback: Livescribe Pen, Google Docs, and Snowball Mic.  I like how technology is being used as the vehicle for providing descriptive feedback.

4. “A Focus on Informed Assessment Practices Webcast #3” (slideshow)

If you’re still unsure about assessment for learning, this slideshow takes you through the six areas of assessment for learning and provides examples of effective descriptive feedback.

5. “Feed Back…Feed Forward: Using Assessment to Boost Literacy Learning” (article)

I found this article by Anne Davies effective because it uses an example of a teacher going through the process of providing descriptive feedback with her students and how they together develop a list of “what good readers do” and then they created a recording sheet together.  What a meaningful and engaging way to make students active leaners and contributors!

6. “Descriptive Feedback Examples” (chart)

This chart provides three sample teacher comments for three different Social Studies assignments.  You’ll notice that for each teacher comment, it is directly tied to the specific curriculum expectation.  The comments provide positive aspects of the students work, as well as points of reflection, next steps, and areas to consider.

7. “Teachers Demonstrate Effective Descriptive Feedback” (video)

A great video to display descriptive feedback in action!

8. “Types of Feedback and Their Purposes” (Chapter 2 in the book “How to Give Effective Feedback to Your Students”)

Susan M. Brookhart provides detailed information regarding various dimensions of feedback, including timing, amount, mode, and audience. For each dimension, she provides examples of good and bad feedback with a discussion explaining each set.

9. “Do You Coach or Do You Judge?” (blog post)

A great article about the key differences between assessment for learning (similar to the role of a coach) and assessment of learning (similar to the role of a judge).

10. “Lucy West: Why Feedback?” (video)

You all know by now how much I love Lucy West! The first video on the page is about feedback, but I’d watch all of them if I were you…Lucy West is that great!

11. “Let’s Talk Assessment…” (newsletter)

This is absolutely fantastic! It summarizes everything you need to know about effective feedback!

12. “Teaching and Learning; What works best” (research article)

A very thorough research article that looks at the impact various teaching innovations and methods have on student learning.  It references John Hattie’s research in 1992, which shows that the “most powerful single moderator that enhances achievement is feedback. The most simple prescription for improving education must be ‘dollops of feedback’” (p.4).

Atherton J S (2011) Teaching and Learning; What works best [On-line: UK] retrieved 4 March 2013 from http://www.learningandteaching.info/teaching/what_works.htm
Read more: What works best http://www.learningandteaching.info/teaching/what_works.htm#ixzz2MdWsMCXP
Under Creative Commons License: Attribution Non-Commercial No Derivatives

Filmpossible: Bringing Visibility to Disability! View and Vote Please!

Holland Bloorview Kids Rehabilitation Hospital is “Canada’s largest children’s rehabilitation hospital. [Their] vision is to create a world of possibility for kids with disability.  [They] pioneer treatments, technologies, therapies and real-world programs that give children with disabilities the tools to participate fully in life.” (source)

Our school has a Multiple Exceptionalities (M.E.) Class for students with special needs.  Our school’s goal is to allow these students to have a safe and nurturing space to grow and develop to their full potential and learn essential life skills, all while having the opportunity to be integrated with their peers as often as possible.  We are lucky and honoured to have an M.E. class at our school because we are given the opportunity to see first-hand how much our students CAN do and the amazing goals they achieve each day.

Our students are even luckier to have such dedicated, caring, and supportive people working with them.  Their teacher (Michelle) and educational assistants are so proud of their achievements that they have entered them in Holland Bloorview’s filmpossible 2013, an online video and photo contest to bring visibility to disability .

The theme of their video (WE CAN) is to show the world all the things our students CAN achieve, instead of focusing on things that they can’t do. It is truly inspirational.

Please consider voting for their video, so that they are able to win filmpossible 2013! To vote, simply go to filmpossible.ca, sign up for an account, click on “WE CAN” video, and vote each day!

Thank you so much!!

Please click on this link to vote!  “WE CAN” VIDEO

Voting for Round 1 is open until March 25, 2013. Please consider voting for “WE CAN” as often as possible!

To This Day by Shane Koyczan

As we all know, bully prevention month has come and gone.  We talked about how students should not be bystanders, and what immediate steps can be taken.  In this month of Love, we need to not forget that students who are bullied have lasting psychological effects for that experience that may or may not have stopped.   Love them, completely and unconditionally.

We also provided a Tuesday 12 list of books on the subject of bullying, and here today we share with you an amazing new find!

The poet Shane Koyczan, created a poem about bullying but took has taken it a step further.  He enlisted the help of 20 animators to create segments to represent his poem.  The result is absolutely incredible.  The account of his personal experience and of others is at times overwhelming.  The visuals are chilling, a truly amazing short film.  This video is truly beautiful and powerful.

Take the time to watch it, and be the judge about who you share it with.

School: An Essential Component of Society

School: An Essential Component of Society

Our previous posts have discussed Why School is important? and School as Total Institutions.  If you have not had time to read those, just click on the links and have  a read! Todays post is the final in this series.  Please comment and share your experiences.

Schooling offers students the opportunity to learn through reading, researching, and critically thinking about what the world around them presents.  Students interact with others and the result is that students are shaped and re-shaped, a process through which they gain a sense of identity.    For students to be successful in society, they must learn to interact with others in healthy, positive and productive manners.  Schools promote social interaction, and educators monitor social skills to ensure that students understand and accept differences and diversity.

Socialization in school impacts safety as well as interpersonal interactions because students with poor social skills are more likely to demonstrate aggressive or violent behavior without being able to successfully self regulate, and accept help or ask for help from others.

The benefits are endless, but it is an inclined path.  Students are immersed in the school system but their family values, thoughts, and traditions are consistently with them.   Schools need to incorporate as much of the student body traditions within their walls as possible.  Schools should demonstrate how to blend home values with society.  Collaboration and out reach are key.  If we make families involved, invested and open minded, then the results will be tremendous.

How can schools connect with families?  One way would be multicultural nights.  Presentations from students and parents (who wish and can be involved) about their culture and traditions is a fantastic way.

What other ideas do you have or you have used?

Share your experience with us!