IntelAssessing Projects : Successful Assessment
Examples of Learner-Centred Classrooms


Assessment in Learner-Centred Classrooms
Consider the following scenarios of how assessment is integrated into teaching and learning in a learner-centred classroom.

Mr. Levy’s Ancient Greece Project
Mr. Levy’s Grade 6 class is about to begin a project on Ancient Greece. Prior to beginning the project he poses the Focus Question, How can we learn from our past? He asks learners to write in their word-processor journals about what they already know about Greece and what they want to know. During the project, learners explore, research, read, collaborate, and write in their journal about the various aspects of life in Ancient Greece. They use this information to create a virtual museum of Ancient Grecian artifacts. Learners use a critical-thinking checklist to assist them in developing their list of artifacts to include in the museum, and use the Visual Ranking Tool to designate which of these artifacts they believe are most influential in today’s society.

Mr. Levy introduces a project rubric to help learners (and parents) understand expectations and help them create quality work. While the learners are developing their museum of artifacts, Mr. Levy monitors individual learners’ progress through dialogue. The final virtual museum of artifacts is posted on the class website. At the end of the project, learners develop a list of reasons why the Greek empire fell and use Visual Ranking to prioritize the list. The final assessment includes a self-reflection of learning during the project.

Ms. Stewart’s Probability Project
Ms. Stewart’s Grade 8 class is beginning a project on probability in which they will learn about notions of equally likely by determining fairness of games. Ultimately, learners will become designers for a toy company and create their own fair game. Curious about what her learners’ already know about the subject, she engages them in a game of Paper, Scissors, Rock and asks them, “Is this game fair?” She is surprised at how many learners answered, “All games are fair, since you always have a chance at winning”. She asks them to reflect on this activity and note how they can determine if a game is fair in their journals. This pre-assessment will launch the project and create a place for learners to look back and compare their own learning after completing the project.

While learners spend the next several class periods examining games for fairness, Ms. Stewart uses a variety of methods to assess whether her learners are gaining some basic understanding of probability. She walks around the room with her clipboard, monitoring learner progress and using checklists to evaluate their work. She also informally questions learners to probe their understandings of the concepts. When she is convinced that her learners have a basic understanding of probability, she groups them into game designer teams. She assigns the teams the task of creating a game and defending its fairness mathematically to the toy company’s board of directors. Ms. Stewart wants to increase the likelihood that her learners will be successful on this project, so she provides them with a project scoring guide, which clearly articulates her expectations for quality work. She is pleased at the high quality of her learners’ projects. She finishes the project by asking learners to look over their saved work for the project, to choose a piece of work that shows how much they have learned, and explain in their journals how it does so. Ms. Stewart then has her learners replay the game, Paper, Scissors, Rock, re-examining it for fairness. She instructs her learners to compare these findings with their prior responses and to draw conclusions about what they have learned through the project on probability.


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