The Most Appealing Ideas Expressed by the Authors
In the book titled Classroom Assessment for Student Learning, the authors focused on decomposing the process of assessment and then reviewing its different components is separate chapters. One of the most interesting ideas promoted by the authors is the adjustment of the educators’ expectations as to the final result and achievements of the learners. In particular, this aspect presents itself as a problem when unrealistic expectations of a teacher serve as the basis for the established assessment. In such situation, the students are likely to fail the test and be given poor grades that essentially would not reflect the actual level of performance and, consequently, my lead to the teacher’s failure to set the new requirements and form the further instruction appropriately.
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Another idea expressed by the authors that I found particularly fascinating is the one about “student-friendly language”. The concept of the student-friendly language is used by the authors to refer to the teaching communication style that will allow a higher level of mutual understanding between the teacher and the learners. Moreover, this language is expected to include special techniques helping the teachers to get their point across to the students, reason with them without having to become an autocratic educator. Also, speaking the student-friendly language, a professional could become better at motivating the learners to work on their tasks and projects – a skill that is extremely valuable in the educational setting. In my opinion, teaching has to be based on the learners’ willingness to receive and use the offered new knowledge, and that is why I believe that the ability to persuade the students to cooperate is very useful.
The Implications of the Ideas in the Book for Me as an Educator
The major implication for me as an educator that this book has involves a better understanding of the nature of assessment that, in turn, allows a deeper vision of the tasks and objectives included in assessment practices. In addition, as a complicated activity, assessment requires careful and thoughtful management. In that way, the second implication of the book on my practice as a teacher is the provision of an opportunity for me to develop a smarter and more detailed perspective on different aspects of assessment. In particular, reading this book could potentially enable me to recognize the learning and assessment needs on my students and thus set more appropriate assessment tasks. Moreover, the authors mentioned that assessment strategies are very diverse and for a professional to be able to select the techniques that are the most suitable for his or her learning activities and goals, the educator is required to be able to distinguish between them and know their specificity and purposes.
All in all, reading this book could potentially teach an educator to manage assessment strategies and use them wisely and in consistence with the context, interpret the assessment results accurately and make the appropriate conclusions for the future instruction and the provision of feedback to the learners, and avoid biased perspectives during the processes of grading and evaluation.
The Ideas That I Challenge
In my opinion, the importance of the assessment practices in education is extremely high. As a result, I found it rather challenging to identify the ideas in the book under review that I could challenge.
The idea I would like to challenge is the one that I found particularly interesting in the first place – the concept of student-friendly communication. As I mentioned previously, I believe that this feature is one of the critical components of the successful teaching. At the same time, the entire concept of learner-friendly communication, instruction, and the delivery of new knowledge is rather vague. To be more precise, I think it is well-known to any practicing teacher that classroom environments can be very diverse; meaning that in one class there can be students of different backgrounds culturally and socially. In that way, I find it challenging to outline a general definition of student-friendly communication in education. Aligning the instruction and the delivered material with the real-life experiences of the learners, using comprehendible vocabulary, and a down-to-earth approach are usually named as the major techniques helping educators to accomplish student-friendly communication. However, in a classroom comprised of learners with different cultural and language environments, socioeconomic backgrounds, and overall life experiences it could be very difficult to deliver the same material to several different groups of learners simultaneously while using a type of language and communication that would be equally appropriate for everyone without causing isolation.
In conclusion, I would like to mention that I am fully aware of the universal complexity of the learner-friendly concept due to a growing rate of social and cultural diversity on a national, as well as global scale. At the same time, I do not want to deny the value of the strategies for learner-friendly communication in education and their positive effects. However, the application of this concept is becoming more challenging for the teachers operating in highly diverse school environments.