Assessment to make decisions about student learning, curriculum, and

Assessment is a process for obtaining information incurriculum to make decisions about student learning, curriculum, and programs.  Because of this, educators strongly suggestthat assessment and curriculum be integrated in the continuous cycle ofcurriculum, which is planning, operation, implementation, and evaluation.  As educators, we need to be able to answerthese questions about curriculum alignment…1.  Do weunderstand how our curriculum is aligned with the standards?2.

  Do we havea good understanding of what our students are expected to know and be able todo within the content standards?3.  Do we useunpacked standards and learning targets to plan lessons and assessments?Assessment and evaluation are no longer the productof teaching, they are tools that students and teachers use to support learning.  Assessment should drive our instruction inthe classroom.

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  When our data revealsthat students are performing below grade level, it is the responsibility of theteacher to change her instruction to meet the needs of her students.  According to Ervin, students performing belowgrade level for a significant amount of time need to be placed in Tier 2(secondary prevention or strategic intervention).   Students who are identified as being at-riskof experiencing problems receive supplemental or small-group interventions. Anintervention should include the following: 1.  What theintervention will look like (i.e., its steps or procedures)2.  Whatmaterials and/or resources are needed and whether these are available withinexisting resources?3.

  Roles andresponsibilities with respect to intervention implementation (i.e., who will beresponsible for running the intervention, preparing materials, etc.)4.  Theintervention schedule (i.

e., how often, for how long, and at what times in theday?) and context (i.e.

, where, and with whom?)5.  How theintervention and its outcomes will be monitored (i.e., what measures, by whom,and on what schedule?) and analyzed (i.e., compared to what criterion?).Unexpected studentoutcomes are usually why curriculum issues are discussed within the schoolsystem.  When our students do not performas we think they should, we begin to question our teaching and ask ourselves isthe curriculum to demanding for our students.

 Curriculum directors within the school systems keep searching for a onesize fits all curriculum, but I do not believe there is one curriculum that isgoing to meet the needs of all students. In my school system, we change reading and math curriculums often.  The latest and greatest curriculum that isdiscussed in a conference or meeting becomes our new curriculum.

  We are currently using a math curriculum thatno one likes.  It’s confusing to teach,the pace of the lessons is to slow or to fast (no in between), and the homeworkis confusing for students and parents.  So,the question is:  Why are we using thiscurriculum when not one a math teacher in the building thinks it is beneficialto the students?  Administration needs tolet teachers become familiar with a curriculum and learn to adjust the lessonsto accommodate her students before we decide to change to somethingdifferent.  A curriculum needs to beimplemented several years before we can determine if it is beneficial to ourstudents. If we keep changing curriculums, teachers will not have theopportunity to master the lessons and become confident in teaching thematerial.  Studying and using thecurriculum for an extended period is key to determine if the curriculumaddresses the standards and is helping students achieve mastery of skillstaught.   BibliographyErvin, R.

(n.d.). Considering Tier 3 Within aResponse-to-Intervention Model. Retrieved from http://www.rtinetwork.org/essential/tieredinstruction