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Saturday, February 20, 2010

Arts-Based Assessment:The Total Picture

Arts-Based Assessment: The Total Picture

There is a huge assumption and major disconnect in the active engagement of student centered formative assessment and how students show they are smart.

Schools need to engage in qualitative assessments to truly “know their students”. Electronic and web-based assessments only quantifies student achievement as (at best) – a portion of the “student picture”. Formative assessment should not only inform instruction but also allow students to show how they are smart as well as how smart they are. Failing to engage in arts-based assessment as a component of a “balanced” assessment process is a major error in the form of a missed opportunity.

By using the Arts to reflect on the “emotional level of learning” (according to Piaget: “Where learning is forever.”) teachers can gain an insight into the true level of understanding reached by their students. Write a poem, draw a picture, stage an acting scene, design a costume, write a song, create a sound collage, visual collage, video collage, oral history, sculpting, installation art, photography, pod cast, PowerPoint, web site, etc., etc., etc!

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