How can I properly use student data to inform my future teaching?

Hey everyone!

I can’t help but feel I’m not using assessment or data to its full capability in my classroom. I feel my brain just is not wired that way to boil my students down to mere numbers or statistics. However, I feel this is something that’s really holding me back in my teaching prowess. How can I actually use assessment and data practically to improve my pedagogy?

Good question.

The topic of using assessment and data more in classrooms is often brought up. There is a myth going around that only math whiz kids can actually use student data effectively in their classrooms. This simply isn’t true, and every teacher, no matter their subject, can engage with assessment and data to improve their teaching and their students’ results.

At PRAC-E Symposium III, a specialist teacher that has expertise in this area laid out how a young teacher might engage with pedagogical elements such as these. Hear what they had to say, and some contrary opinions, in the video and podcast below:

SUMMARY

  • High-stakes testing is simply that… it’s just a test. It is a snapshot of a child at a certain point of time.
  • Any data has to be matched by your teacher judgement as well. You have to ensure that your assessment and data is authentic and mindful of individual student difference.
  • Always collaborate over the results from your tests, and see how they stack up against other classes.
  • You have to ensure that the child makes the right meaning about themselves in relation to testing culture. Why not try letting the students assess themselves? Students always learn best when they know what they’re good at and what they’re not. Involve students in assessment and keep it real.