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Today I’d like to share a few of the ways that teachers can get started with self-assessment.
And because so much of reflection often happens internally, our students may lack the language or patterns of thought that are required in order to successfully reflect.
Fortunately, we can model this process as we do with many other intellectual process.
It is 6 am on a hot day in July and I’ve already showered and eaten breakfast.
I know that my classmates are all sleeping in and enjoying their summer break, but I don’t envy them; I’m excited to start my day interning with a local newspaper doing investigative journalism.
This issue comes to bear when we discuss self-assessment.
This can be a scary thing for the teacher who craves control, but it can also be the easy way out for the teacher who is looking to lower their workload.This need not require lots of extra work from the teacher.I like to do this by taking an essay from another class, removing the name, and thinking aloud about the ways in which this writer has met, approached, or exceeded expectations for various parts of the assignment.As a parent of two young boys, I find myself wrestling with two opposing forces: I stop and consider the impact that my life and parenting style will have on my sons.But I also know that too much coddling and structure will backfire — as it apparently has for my generation, Millennials.I work a typical 8-5 day during my summer vacation and despite the early mornings, nothing has made me happier.Although it wasn't clear to me then, looking back on my high school experiences and everything that led to me to this internship, I believe this path began with a particularly savvy teacher and a little book she gave me to read outside of class.They are intentional, logical steps towards helping students become more independent evaluators of their own skills, leading towards autonomy and confidence in their writing.Now is a great time to introduce self-assessment to your students because there were previously few tools that helped facilitate or teach this skill. I consider reflection to be the qualitative, softer complement to self-assessment.Funny enough, this is the same dichotomy that I face as a writing teacher: how do I stay accountable for helping my students improve, without “holding their hands” too much?And how do I provide a learning environment that encourages student autonomy, equipping kids with the skills of self-monitoring and goal setting that are required for success in college and life in general?