Showing posts from October, 2016

Best of Frank Serafini: Assessment Windows

I have used the term “windows,” as many other educators have before me, to describe the assessment instruments used to generate information about the students in my class. I chose the term windows because it describes the importance of observation and the limited scope of any one assessment technique. Teachers “look through” these assessment windows at their students during actual literacy events. These assessments are observational guides, designed to hone teachers powers of observation and make their assessments more meaningful. There is no single window, no single assessment, that provides access to the complete child. In other words, each window reveals information about a child as much as it conceals information. Each assessment window calls forth different aspects of a child’s behaviors, abilities and dispositions. It is only through the use of a variety of assessment windows that a more extensive understanding of a child’s literate abilities emerges. When through a window, we of

The Best of Frank Serafini: Assessment & Reflection

Assessment has to be about more than simply generating information about my students to report to parents on a report card. The information I gathered about my students had to do something for me and my students. In order to do so, I had to do something with this information. I needed to learn how to use this information to make better instructional decisions and to design more effective lessons and learning experiences in my reading workshop. This led me to investigate the concept of reflection, reflective practices and how to assume the role of “teacher as researcher.” Much of my understanding of reflective practice came from the early work of John Dewey. In How We Think , Dewey described reflective practice as an, "active, persistent, and careful consideration of any belief or supposed form of knowledge in the light of the grounds that support it, and the further conclusions to which it tends.” The grounds that support our instructional and curricular decisions are based on the