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Assessment for Learning - what do people think?

Discussion in 'Assessment' started by Rach567, Jul 30, 2012.

  1. Oh paul. After everything we've been through, it comes to this: a blanket rejection of my attempted hearty matiness. Some things are more important than hypothetical moral disputes, paul; what about joy, laughter, a brotherhood of educators spanning the public / private divide? It is with a heavy heart, and an absence of matiness, that I respond, again, to your logically tabulated points.
    1 - Yes.
    2 - Right, thanks for your view.
    3 - I've never been to Syria either, but I wouldn't fancy going there right now - does this make me prejudiced? Is it not possible to develop opinions in the absence of direct personal experience? I don't much like the Nazis - am I prejudiced?
    4 - It just isn't, paul.
    5 - Don't worry, it'll get better... they'll be fine.
    6 - how could you?
    I am despondent paul. Will you apologise?
  2. The argumentation will progress a great deal better if you dispense with your superior, mocking tone. I am trying to treat this discussion seriously; you, apparently, are not.
    1. So you WILL send your child to such a school, although you do not have to. That much has been established. A failing school, and failing terribly so. By Ofsted's own criteria, the worst school in the country. Why is that not immoral? Do you honestly think your child would like to attend such a school? Would your child like to attend such a school? Yes or no?
    2. By this, do you mean that most kids do not, in point of fact, 'grow' in such places? If you think that they do 'grow' in such places (whatever that means), that they can 'expand their horizons', as you say, then it must follow that Ofsted is wrong. The school is actually quite a good one. You have insights which the inspection body do not have. What are they?
    3.You have not answered the question. Have you ever worked in the private sector? Yes or no?
    4. Your Syria analogy is exceptionally pointless. Re: Syria we have evidence re: newspapers, television, discussion, commentary, daily analysis, etc. A balanced view, for the educated person, can be obtained. Evidence is there. What is your evidence for the comments you make re: private schools? Give evidence. Why do you hold the views you do in regard to private education? Where is your evidence? Provide it, please.
    5.'It just isn't' is clearly not an answer. Why is it not immoral? Give reasons. If you will not provide justification for your views, then this entire discussion, by definition, cannot progress. And that is a consequence of your refusal to provide justification for your views. Therefore, the only conclusion to draw is that you regard the discussion as lacking in merit.
    6.Do you mean that your child will not be damaged? How will they not be damaged? Why won't they be damaged? Answer the question. Give reasons.
    And for a third time, no more of the sarcastic tone, please. Just answer the questions, questions which logically follow from what you have said.
  3. Sorry Paul! Off to Greece for a week now so see you later!
  4. Why is a socialist going on a holiday to Greece? That doesn't seem very socialistic. You could have a weekend in a Butlins instead. Most strange. Ah, well, if you are fortunate enough to have wealth and economic privilege, I suppose you want to use it, not for 'social justice', but to purchase nice things for yourself.
  5. I have used AfL in my primary classroom for the last 4 years and have trained the whole school in it's use for both staff and pupils. I am not as good with words as STpaul (yawn!) or RHMorton (I am glad to see that RH has stopped wasting time on Paul) and am sorry that they have hijacked your thread.
    I find AfL to be a fundamental part of my teaching and it has improved both the way I teach and the way children learn in my classroom, and across the school.
    Children, like adults, like to know what they need to do in order to succeed, rather than slogging their socks off only to find they have got the wrong end of the stick. AfL enables me to have a clear focus on my teaching and ability to ensure that it is appropriately challenging to the individual ability of each child in my class. Teaching children to assess their own learning also gives them ownership and teaches them to reflect on their own learning and how to move progress (a skill that will help them in the workplace)
    At primary school (pre-year 6) I believe that learning and the assessment of it is not about exams but about equipping children for life in the real world. Unfortunately, as children get older and have to learn to face exams - it maybe that the learning becomes more exam orientated, but that is due to the education system - not the teachers or the idea behind AfL .
    Some of the more experienced teachers in the school, who have seen so many initiatives and backtracks etc, are cynical about AfL. "It's just another fad" was one comment from a teacher who has been teaching for 30 years. However, it is evident in the children's work and experiences as they move up through the school that, those teachers who have embraced AfL in the way intended, have equipped their children to be more focused on what they learn/experience and how they learn it. The children are also more able to cope with mistakes, learn from them and work out how to succeed. The teachers are also more able to give personalised learning which enables them to help the individual to make progress (building on their self esteem further)
    Meanwhile - the cynic continues to teach to the average child in the class and the others are either bored or unhappy. Marking is dull and contains no dialogue between pupil and teacher. Of course this is being dealt with through performance management.
    I hope this makes sense - I have "holiday brain". Wish I was in Greece, like RH, reading a good book. Will be content with sitting in my garden reading a good book instead.
  6. When I was doing my PGCE I was always confused when this amazing and novel concept of AfL was introduced to us all. It all seemed so obvious.
    Is it not normal to check that your students understand what you have taught them?
  7. Exactly. Just more--massively expensive--nonsense, and reinvention of the wheel. It's called 'marking'.
  8. What you will find is that many of the AFL evangelists have absolutely no contingency in their planning for the students not having learnt the material during each phase of the lesson - they teach for 15 mins, do some AfL, and lo and behold we can move on to the next phase as the pupils understand the material just delivered.

    If I ever see a plan with some contingency for when AfL shows the pupils haven't learnt something to a satisfactory level I'll eat my hat. Good teaching is going through the material at a suitable pace and knowing intimately just how much of it is going in by your questioning, your knowledge of the class right down to their body language and facial expressions etc. and then adjusting your delivery subtly on a continual basis. There are no short cuts - certainly not Afl, which in my opinion when followed religiously actually ignores things poorly learnt.

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