Standardized Tests.

Standardized tests are always a big dilemma in the classroom. The scores on these tests often influence funding for the schools. Because of this many schools 'teach to the test' in order to guarantee high enough scores. Personally I do not like standardized tests for this reason. I do not believe that schools should get money based on how well their students do on tests. If schools do not do well on standardized tests and are denied funding, how are they suppose to get they things they need to do better on the tests next time around?

Also as a student these tests are a very stressful time. Teachers are so stressed by wanting their students to do well on standardized tests, they often stress out their students too. School schedule not be a stressful place. These tests that influence a whole school, are taking away from the educational experience.



Personally, I love portfolios. I think they are a neat and organized way to track the progress of students thought their educational careers. Portfolios can hold the best (or worst) of a students work. I think that having good and bad work will make the portfolios more valuable as a reference. Keeping both types of graded work handy will allow the students and teachers to use the portfolios as a reference when completing new assignments. The students will know exactly what the teacher does and does not want.

Portfolios are helpful for both students and teachers. Teachers can use portfolios to track the development of each student. I know as a young student my teachers would keep portfolios of writing and track the developments myself and my classmates made. This can be used as a form of assessment because the teachers can see of the students are actually understanding the work.


Teacher Expectations.

As a teacher, I have many expectations for my students. First off, I would expect all of my students to complete the assignments I assign to them. The main purpose of school is to learn and learning takes practice. This includes completing homework and other assignments given by the teacher. In order for my students to succeed, I expect them to do everything I ask of them.

I also expect my students to respect me and their fellow students. Respect is an important part of learning because it ensures comfort and reassurance in the classroom. Having respectful students will make the classroom stress-free and perfect for adequate learning.

Another thing I expect of my students is for them to be open to new experiences. All children should be open to new things especially in school. Since the classroom is so different from home, it is important for students to be able to except a new type of person or occurrence into their everyday lives.


Homework has always been something I have enjoyed. I think I might have been the only kid in the world that actually got pleasure out of bringing school, home. As a young student (and even today), I would love sitting down and making checklists of everything I needed to complete and in what order. I loved picking out the perfect pencil and writing on a clean sheet of paper or worksheet. I guess teaching is a great profession for me! Most of all, I loved being able to show my family what I had learned that day in school.

I feel that homework should not only be practice for students, but a way for parents to see their child’s progress at school. Keeping parents informed of what is happening with their child’s grades on a daily basis is an important factor in keeping students up to pace. For example, if a parent sees a child struggling with their homework, they will be able to send a note to the teacher asking for extra help for their child.

Although homework seems like a great way for students to get extra practice at home, it can also have a negative effect. Since the homework is being completed away from the teacher’s eyes, there is no proof that the students are actually the ones completing the assignments. Often enough, a whiny child will get their guardian to complete the assignment just to avoid aggravation. This is helping anyone! A teacher that sees wonderful homework grades that are actually being completed by adults may make a test harder for students that are not ready.

Checking homework in class and continuing to review is a great way to avoid this. This way the students are aware of what is required of them and the teacher knows whether they really know the material or not.


The Importance of Rubrics.

This week I have discovered the importance of rubrics. The rubrics paper we were assigned gave me the chance to create my first rubric. I had a little trouble figuring out exactly what I wanted to have in my rubric since I did not have an actual assignment that I would be grading. The Rubistar website was a lot of help. Not only does the site have many example rubrics but it also allows you to create your own unique rubric.It allowed me to make the rubric exactly as I wanted it. Rubistar is something I would definitely use in the future.

Personally, I love rubrics. As a student I have always appreciated when teachers gave us rubrics because we know exactly what they are looking for. They allow student to measure their work before they see what the teacher will say about it. Rubrics not only give a student expectations, but they also make grading easier for teachers. Teachers who use rubrics are able to measure their students' level of preference consistently. As a teacher I would definitely consider using rubrics as much as possible.


Fairness in Assessment & Learning Targets.

After reading Chapter 2 I have discovered the importance of validity and reliability in the classroom. Assessment should be fair to all students in a classroom. Tests should not discriminate against any races, socioeconomic backgrounds, genders, disabilities, etc. I feel a great way to avoid unfair testing is a grading rubric. When a teacher gives his or her class grading rubric prior to the test, the class will know what the expectations of the test will be. This way nothing will come as a surprise.

The textbook defines learning targets as an idea that specifies what a teacher would like students to achieve when they have completed an instructional segment. Learning targets should be used in all subjects on all grade levels. It is important for teachers to have a clear idea of what their class will get out of each lesson. If a teacher does not know what the class should understand at the end of the lesson, how should the students know?


About Me...

Hello! For those of you who don't know me, my name is Kristin Thompson. I am 20 years old and I reside in Old Bridge, NJ. Currently, I am a Junior at SPC where I am a resident student and pursuing a Bachelor's degree in Elementary Education and English Literature. I love being a student at SPC and I am really enjoying my time here. I am glad that I made the choice to experience my college career here. Other than keeping up with my studies, I am the Captain of the Women's Bowling team here at Saint Peter's. I really love bowling and have been competing since I was 5 years old. I am lucky to have the opportunity to bowl on the college level, especially on a team that is ranked within the top 20 teams in the United States.

I have mixed feeling about assessment. Personally, I have never been a student who tests well. I could really relate to the video about the fears of assessment. I feel that tests should not only evaluate what a student has learned but what a student can do. Paper and pencil tests can be very nerve racking for some children, especially on the Elementary School level. Tests should be thorough in rating a child's progress specific subjects in more ways than just on paper. Hands on testing may be a more effective way to rate a student. Giving children opportunities to show their progress in the real world will help them develop confidence in places besides the classroom.