Posts by Kim Bailey


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Until We Meet Again: Jumpstarting the Impact of Common Assessments with Post-Assessment Routines

When I chat with teachers about the power of common formative assessments, the conversations are generally positive. Almost universally, teachers see the value of identifying whether students are learning the concepts and skills that they are targeting in their instruction. They conceptually agree with the practice and value the process of working with a collaborative team to design the assessments and analyze the results. Read more


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The Power of Common Formative Assessments

Many researchers have identified formative assessment as one of the more powerful practices to raise student achievement (Black & Wiliam, 1998; Hattie, 2009). When speaking of its power, we often compare formative assessment to summative assessment using metaphorical expressions. For example, formative assessment is like “tasting the soup before serving one’s guests,” or the “practice before the big game.” Others have described formative assessment as the rehearsal before the performance, or the “check-up before the autopsy.” Read more


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Start Your Year by Building a Learning Partnership with Your Students

It’s here. The start of the school year—that crucial time when educators excitedly “set the stage” with their students and jumpstart their vision for a successful learning experience in their class. It’s an official opportunity to initiate a strong learning partnership with students that empowers them to grow in their independence and empowerment as learners (Popham, 2011). Sounds good, right? Yet, if we think about the typical approach to setting the stage at the beginning of the year, it often falls short of establishing a strong foundation for that partnership. Read more


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Take Time to Smell the Roses

Along with the change of seasons from winter to spring comes the anticipation of new growth—it may be seen in the budding of leaves or blooming of early flowers.  But for many educators, when the calendar pages arrive at spring, it signals a different type of anticipation.  Instead of “Ahh, spring!” the reaction is “Agghh!  Spring!” The final stretch of the race is here, what some educators call “crunch time.”  We might hear worried statements such as “We still have so much to teach before the end of the year”, “My kids aren’t ready for testing”, or “I can’t get everything done.”  In our “busy-ness” and haste, we might not notice the many forms of new growth taking place right before us.  Maybe we aren’t taking the time to “smell the roses.” Read more