Teachers are meant to use their experience and professional training to connect with the assessments during classes. At times, the teacher may make these assessments unconsciously not being aware of the judgment they bring and the impact it has on learners’ behaviors. Frey and Hiebert say traditional practitioners characterized assessment as a periodic measurement based on norm-referenced objective testing in a single setting (303). This meant that the assessments done were suppose to be teacher proof, meaning the teachers did not have a say in administration procedures, nature of the tests or the scoring of the students improvement. Ways of assessing the students has changed and it now uses the open-ended format where it is theory-based and generally teacher-mediated. This paper will reflect and analyze an article written by Nancy Frey and Elfrieda Hiebert on the teacher based assessment of literacy learning. It will also reflect on how teachers can apply principles presented to their pedagogy.
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Assessment is defined as the process of learning the status of a student and spotting their weakness and strengths in learning. Ways of assessments is broadly divided in the direction of two parts namely the informal and formal. An informal assessment is when the teacher considers the how and what the student knows whereas formal assessments is when the what is only taken into consideration by the teacher. The other notable difference of the two is that formal assessments are usually published whereas informal assessments are mostly teacher-developed. It is important for teachers to choose their way of assessments because, “the measures that teachers choose determines the information that the instrument will yield” (Frey and Hiebert 303). Selecting a wrong type of assessment can have effect on the teachers needs because the teacher may not cover the relevant areas he/ she was supposed to cover. This translates to the teacher not having the relevant information that they were looking for in the student.
Frey and Hiebert argue and say for teachers to have effective assessments they ought to be observant of the students’ written and oral products (304). The teacher achieves this by centering on how the student has learned and what ways the student learned. They also argue further and say that the teachers are the focus of assessing their students’ literacy learning and behaviors. “Only through teacher observations do we find out how one speaker, listener, writer, reader, or viewer integrates knowledge of discrete skills into complex literate behavior” (Frey and Hiebert 304).
Teachers can apply principles to their pedagogy by developing the performance tests. This involves the teachers asking the students to develop skills that were learned during literacy events and recombine them to create a new context. For the assessments to be more effective, teachers can use literacy folders as a strategy. Literacy folders encompass day-by-day work sample that the students experienced. The advantage of literacy folders is to help teachers come up with a selected portfolio (Frey and Hiebert 310).
On a final note, teachers assessing their students work is important due to the fact they get to know and learn there students. This enables them to be able to teach more effectively because they know how to handle their students. Teachers are also required to be observant of the written and oral skills of their students. For them to achieve this, performance tests helps them keep track of the students. It is important for teachers to keeping on assessing their students in order to achieve adequate learning.
Frey, Nancy and Hiebert, Elfrieda. Teacher-Based Assessment of Literacy Learning.2005: 303-310. Web.