“Assimilation” and “accommodation” in preschool teachers’ practices of authentic assessment in China Guanyu Cai& Jigang Du (Beijing Normal University)
Introduction norm-referenced/on-demand assessment ↓ authentic assessment ↓ curriculum-based assessment play-based assessment dynamic assessment …
Introduction • curriculum-based assessment: • link to curriculum content and instruction; • Work Sampling: developmental checklists, portfolios and a summary report. • play-based assessment: • a list of the critical skills; • match it to the curriculum goals; • play as a medium to develop . • dynamic assessment: • combined with other approaches • mediatedlearning experience.
Introduction • Common traits: • Similarities ways of collecting • Psychological skills • Meaningful context • Curriculum modification • Cultural background
Context • 3~6→preschool/kindergarten/you’eryuan • Large class & high child-staff ratio • Disciplinary teaching & learning framework & cultural tradition of collectivism • whole-group activities on health, science, language, art and social domains • Concept of “curriculum” & activity theory
Result • (1) Confirming the use of ‘qualitative method in assessment • Teachers have long been observing children. They used to write educational narrative and set portfolios for children as a documentation of their daily work and children’s growth. Now they are trying to utilize this common work to provide clues of children’s progress for curriculum modification, instruction improvement and environment preparation.
Result • (2) Assessing children’s activities in groups • This is an economical and ecological method. Teachers just pay attention to children’s activities either in whole-group instruction or free-play. By gathering group works together, teachers could sort the development of the class into levels, and modify the curriculum and improve instruction. Also, group works already contain peer interaction, and show children’s use of mediated learning experiences more naturally, as is required in dynamic assessment..
Result • (3) Connecting developmental checklists or scales with the learning framework • They tried to discuss on the items of some observation scales and correspond items to 5 domains in the national learning framework. Teachers claimed that the primary effect of checklist or scale was helping teachers learn further about the pedagogical content knowledge of each domain, which would be useful when designing curriculum. Besides, the results of assessment by checklists usually showed little difference with teachers’ judgements.
Discussion Authentic assessment could respond to the questions of external evaluation - child development assessment. Authentic assessment offers another perspective: regarding assessment as part of curriculum modification and a method of improving children’s development. What should be pay attention to is how the teachers utilize the information of child development rather than the outcome itself. This could also be reflected in national quality standards.
THANKS Guanyu Cai& Jigang Du