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.... Maths in Primary Schools

  • Date Submitted: 11/10/2010 12:56 AM
  • Flesch-Kincaid Score: 57.2 
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Don Thompson and Natalie Else remind us that traditionally mathematics assessment has been concerned with the collection of tests and the recording of the amount of incorrect or correct answers. This allows little insight towards the mental processes and understandings of the students. They suggest that to assess students learning adequately a range of   techniques need to be used. I will outline some of the techniques that are considered by professionals in this profession as more thorough forms of assessing that assess more than just the number of incorrect and correct answers.   By this I mean assessment that allows educators to develop detailed records and profiles for their students.   One form of assessment that I found lots of reports on was journaling and I actually received the benefit of seeing this in action in my placement school. When on my placement I asked a student what he thought of journaling and his response was ‘ my friends and I like it because we don’t have to sit and write boring tests that are hard to understand, when we do journaling we are allowed to ask the teacher for help. She won’t tell us the answer but it makes it easier than a test. Sometimes it is even fun.’ I think this outlines   the benefits of journaling. Another assessment method that has started to be used in schools to great affect according to rosemary cullingham is ‘open –ended’ question tasks, tasks that require the children to explain and justify their responses.   Rowland stated that this was effective as it was practical in nature and allowed students to respond at their own level, and to explain their answers. Her students enjoyed this because if they got the final answer wrong they were able to pick up points through the explaining and justifying stage. Work samples are another popular assessment method and can provide teachers with a non threatening assessment method that will allow them to perceive deeper elements of students learning without the added pressure of...


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