Formative assessment is a process by which teachers evaluate students' needs while students are learning. This feedback allows teachers to adjust their teaching methods to meet student learning goals.
Summative assessment evaluates student learning at the end of an instructional unit. This allows teachers to know if students have met the curricular standards or benchmarks. Listed below are some examples of formative and summative assessments.
- exit slips
- four corners
- concept maps
- unit test
- midterm exam
- final exam
These examples are pretty standard and are often used, as they should be. With regard to formative assessment, however, there are some useful tech tools out there that make learning more fun and engaging for students--and easier on teachers! After reading this recent blog post from one of my favorite sites, I decided to try them out, and here are my three free favorites:
Socrative describes itself as a "smart student response system that empowers teachers to engage their classrooms through a series of educational exercises and games via smartphones, laptops, and tablets." Teachers log in via their own device, select an activity, and direct the students to login and respond in real-time. Many of the activities and games are pre-designed, saving teachers much-needed time. Socrative activities include the following:
- multiple choice & true/false questions auto-graded by Socrative
- short answer responses
- exit tickets
- team games
Kahoot is a game-based classroom response system where teachers can create quizzes, discussions, and surveys and project these items on the classroom screen. Students join in through their personal or school devices and "play against each other aiming to top the on-screen leaderboard" while the teacher has the ability to "facilitate and discuss the content." Kahoot's drag and drop feature makes content creation easy. In addition, students can create their own quizzes and then "think up and answer their own questions through thorough research and the collation and/or self creation of imagery and video."
3. Collaborize Classroom
Collaborize Classroom is an online collaborative education platform that allows students and teachers to "transcend the boundaries of their physical classroom to engage in an online collaborative learning environment." With this tool, students can
- take a poll
- hold a debate
- take a practice test
- engage in a conversation
- collaborate on projects
- share resources
If you want to get started, but feel overwhelmed by the technology, I'd suggest you start with Socrative and allow yourself and your students time to get comfortable with the platform. I'm definitely looking forward to getting started myself! Good luck, and let me know how it goes with your class!