Mapping out an authentic assessment

Edutopia bannerYou will love this post from C. Ross Flatt on Edutopia on how a classroom game became a tool for assessment for his sixth graders. In Galactic Mappers, a social studies game about physical geography, students in his classroom compete in teams to create the most geographically diverse continent in a shared hemisphere. This project encourages students to collaborate, design, iterate, and present a finished product in a single class period. The thing I like most about Flatt’s use of the game is the many ways he uses it to evaluate student skills and progress. During gameplay, he checks in with groups and individuals and records observations on a rubric that assesses three areas:
geography (e.g., using a key; demonstrating a firm knowledge of physical geography);
design (e.g., presentig a clear, neat, and visually pleasing continent); and
listening (e.g., ability to listen to their teammates and teacher; act as a positive force in their group).
It is clear that different learners could easily be assessed on different aspects of the game and of game playing. IEP goals (e.g., turn-taking, reading, following directions) could easily be assessed at this time as could enrichment-oriented goals such as the demonstration of leadership skills, knowledge of more complex maps, and so on.

This is just one of many great blog posts on experiential, active, and project-based learning you will find on Edutopia. Click on over to read more about assessment ideas or to explore related topics.

About Paula Kluth