I’ve chosen to include the digital tool assessment project for my second artifact in this class. I chose this project because it is something I’m am very interested in using in my class. Benjamin Herold says that digital assessment tools have the ability to provide “real-time feedback on what children know, combined with fingertip access to a dizzying array of tailored instructional materials, resulting in more customized instruction from teachers and a more personalized learning experience for each student” (Herold, 2018). This is why I am very interested in trying out new tools for creating assessments and why I have decided to include this project. This project fits most closely with ISTE educator standard 7: analyst; where educators understand and use data to drive their instruction and support students in achieving their learning goals. (ISTE, n.d.).
I currently use the digital assessments that are provided through my school’s PowerSchool Learning LMS. While I am am happy with these assessments for the most part, I’m always looking for new and better ways of doing things. During this project I created a new assessment using Google Forms. I am somewhat familiar with using Google Forms, but mostly for completing forms given to me by others. I had never created my own form to be filled out by my students. I really enjoyed learning a new tool, especially this one, because it was so incredibly easy to use. I will enjoy finding ways to use it more often in my class now that I have a better understanding of how it works and what I can do with it.
The most challenging part of a project like this is finding something that works well for different assessments. While I have learned that Google Forms is great for informal assessments like student polling, collecting class data, and gaging background knowledge; it may not be so great for more formal assessments like chapter tests or unit quizzes. I’ve come to learn as I’ve been exposed to more tools in this class, that you have to pick the right tool for the job. I will probably stick with using my PowerSchool assessments for more formal questioning, but I will now use Google Forms more often for informal questioning.
Having had a really great experience trying this new assessment tool makes me want to try others as well. I think that if I give a fews others a try I can find something that really works well in my classroom. I may end up with several that I can use in combination for different types of assessments. I can use Google Forms for polling students at the beginning of my astronomy unit to see what they already know, and what they might like to learn about. I can use another tool like EdPuzzle, to gage student understand while watching astronomy videos. For my unit quizzes and tests I can stick with my current tool, PowerSchool.
The potential of technology for assessment in the classroom is truly unlimited. Its the job of the teacher to discover what works best in their own classrooms, but trying new tools and experimenting is key. You have to be willing to move out of your comfort zone, and not become too set in your ways. I think I’ve gotten off to a good start so far and hope to continue to find new and interesting tools that help my students in the classroom.
Edpuzzle. (n.d.). Retrieved April 08, 2018, from https://edpuzzle.com/
Google Forms – create and analyze surveys, for free. (n.d.). Retrieved April 08, 2018, from https://www.google.com/forms/about/
Herold, B. (2018, March 01). Testing Digital Tools to Improve Formative Assessments. Retrieved April 08, 2018, from https://www.edweek.org/ew/articles/2014/03/13/25personalized.h33.html
ISTE Standards FOR EDUCATORS. (n.d.). Retrieved April 07, 2018, from https://www.iste.org/standards/for-educators
PowerSchool Learning. (n.d.). Retrieved April 08, 2018, from https://www.powerschool.com/