Students need to learn the skills of objective self-assessment so that they can take greater responsibility for their own learning. The two student self- and peer assessment checklists included in this Teacher’s
Resource enables students to assess the quality of their own work before you assess it. (See Assessment
Tool 3, Self- and Peer Assessment Checklist: Presentation/Performance Task/Research
Assignment/Independent Study and Assessment Tool 4, Self- and Peer Assessment Checklist: Discussion.)
Teachers can also involve parents in the assessment process. A student–parent conference provides an opportunity (usually at mid-term) for students to present their work to one or more of their parents or guardians. The conference could be organized so that three or four parent–child meetings occur simultaneously. The teacher circulates around the room, providing clarification where necessary. The tool should be provided to both the parent(s) and the student upon arrival and used to decide on a grade at the end of each conference. (See Assessment Tool 5, Assessment Rubric: Conferencing.)
Conferences for the entire class can be completed in only one or two nights, and they achieve a number of positive results. Students who know that their parents are going to participate in the evaluation often make a greater effort. Parents and guardians have the opportunity to meet the teacher in the classroom environment and enjoy the dialogue with their children. They also find out what their children are learning about and can discuss the evaluation and presentation of the course material. Because both students and parents participate in the evaluation process, grades are much more meaningful. The process also enlists parents as allies in teaching and working to solve problems for the student.
To help students become more objective assessors of their own achievement, it is crucial to provide them with opportunities to assess their own performance and the performance of their peers. However, you, the teacher, must maintain primary responsibility for the evaluation of student achievement, including determining the components of report card grades. This responsibility is