Nine. This is the number of days before students are back. Here I am, in my tenth year of teaching, and still freaking out like a newbie. I have an endless list of things that I would like to have ready before schools starts: organizing my classroom and getting all the stationary and materials ready, deciding on my icebreakers and getting-to-know-you activities for the first day, and, amongst many other items, calmness to accept all the things that won’t get done before August 15!
Nonetheless, I decided to put at the top of my list this year, creating support materials to help my MYP Year 1 students get acquainted with the Language Acquisition assessment criteria. I made this choice because I want to make sure that before we get too busy with the day to day teaching and learning, my students and their parents have a clear understanding of the criteria from the very beginning. One of my personal goals for this year is to focus on formative assessment and feedback, and to be able to do that properly, my students should have very clear what the criteria entails, so they can make sense of the feedback on their work. In previous years I spent time explaining the criteria using examples of student work, but I feel it is always good for students and parents alike to have a go-to document with this information.
After much thought, I created a document that explains in a simple, visual way what each criterion means and what kind of tasks are related to each of them. Since I teach a Phase 4-5 LA English class and a Phase 1 LA Spanish class in MYP Year 1, I wanted a document that I could use with both classes, hence I didn’t make reference in the document to descriptors specific to each of those phases.
Without further ado, here is my snapshot of the assessment criteria:
Click here to download a PDF version of the document.
Similar to the criteria snapshot, I want to create a document in student friendly language for each individual criterion, not as task-specific clarifications, as we do these for each summative assessment, but as a generic explanation of what each of the strands entails. My to do list keeps getting bigger and bigger…