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Chapter 5 - Tracking Student Progress

Robert J. Marzano Marzano Research ePub

In chapter 2, we saw that tracking student progress over time is one of the defining features of the process of formative assessment. This chapter describes four basic approaches to tracking student progress. Each has unique characteristics, and each has advantages and disadvantages. Whether a particular teacher uses one approach over the other is frequently a matter of style and philosophy. It is also a matter of the content that is being addressed. A teacher might use one approach within a particular unit because it lends itself to the content of that unit; he or she might use a different approach in another unit for the same reason.

Approach 1: Summative Score Assigned at the End of the Grading Period

One approach to tracking student progress begins with designing assessments that include all levels of the assessment scale from the very beginning. For example, a mathematics teacher working on a unit about proportions designs and administers assessments that contain items for score values 2.0, 3.0, and 4.0 from the scale regarding proportion. Right from the first assessment, students can obtain scores that represent the full range on the scale—on the first assessment, students can receive scores as low as 0.0 and as high as 4.0. Of course, at the beginning of a unit, many students will probably not be able to answer items at score 3.0 and 4.0 values because this content has not yet been taught. However, a number of students might be able to answer items at score value 2.0 because those items contain content that is part of the students' general background knowledge.

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Chapter 4: Providing Emotional Support

Boogren, Tina H. Marzano Research ePub

Chapter 4

PROVIDING EMOTIONAL SUPPORT

Most beginning teachers reach a point in their first year when they struggle to keep up with their workload. When this happens, they might begin staying very late after school to work, even after all the other teachers have left the building. Beginning teachers may also spend Friday nights and Saturdays in their classrooms, trying to prepare effective lesson plans, catch up on grading and progress reports, and keep up with a flood of emails from parents and colleagues. They might even begin to have second thoughts about becoming a teacher and wonder how they will ever make it to the end of the school year.

From feelings of exhaustion, isolation, and self-doubt to feelings of stress surrounding the overwhelming number of practical tasks and amount of logistical information, the few first years of teaching can be fraught with emotional obstacles. A teacher who requires emotional support needs coping strategies for responding to these challenges in a healthy way and reassurance to promote self-confidence.

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Chapter 5: Providing Instructional Support

Boogren, Tina H. Marzano Research ePub

Chapter 5

PROVIDING INSTRUCTIONAL SUPPORT

As explained in chapters 3 and 4, beginning teachers often need physical and emotional support to make it through their first few weeks and months in the classroom. However, as beginning teachers settle into their teaching roles, mentors must provide high-quality instructional support. Mentors should ensure that mentees use effective instructional strategies in the classroom, monitor their current level of skill with those strategies, and understand what they can do to improve their level of expertise.

Once a beginning teacher catches up on grading, lesson planning, and communicating with parents, she may begin to wonder whether all of her work has actually paid off. She finally has more time to spend on developing effective lesson plans, but she isn’t sure how to improve the processes she currently uses. When her lessons fail, she cannot pinpoint a reason why. Frequently, she asks herself questions such as, “Was that lesson poorly planned or just poorly executed? What does my principal expect of me? What can I reasonably expect from my students? Which strategies work? How do I know if students are learning?”

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Part III Tier 3 Vocabulary Terms From the Common Core State Standards

Robert J. Marzano Marzano Research ePub

part III contains Tier 3 domain-specific terms from the CCSS. In our analysis of the CCSS, we sought to include every important word that appeared in the grade-level standards. Additionally, we included terms that appeared in an earlier compilation of vocabulary from standards documents (Marzano, 2004). Please visit marzanoresearch.com/commoncore for a complete alphabetical listing of the terms in this section and the sources of each term. Teachers can use the appendix (page 215) to locate specific words in parts II and III.

Because the words in part III are all subject-specific (math or ELA), they are organized into measurement topics rather than categories (as in part II). A measurement topic is simply a category of related words. Also, because there are approximately ten times as many terms in part III as in part II, providing descriptions and examples (as in part II) for each Tier 3 term was beyond the scope of this work. In lieu of descriptions and examples for the part III terms, each term in part III is accompanied by a suggested grade-level range. This allows teachers to quickly locate appropriate words for their current topic of study at their assigned grade level.

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Appendix A - Answers to Exercises

Robert J. Marzano Marzano Research ePub

Answers to Exercise 2.1
Obtrusive, Unobtrusive, and Student-Generated Assessments

1. Mona is very close to receiving an A on the content that has been covered in her art class this quarter. She approaches the teacher and proposes that she will provide a sketch that shows she has mastered the techniques presented during the quarter.

Mona is employing student-generated assessment in this scenario. She has designed an assessment that will demonstrate her mastery of the content.

2. After teaching the concept of a thesis statement, discussing examples of successful thesis statements, and providing the students with opportunities for practice, Mr. Grace gives his students a topic and asks them to write a corresponding thesis statement. He scores the effectiveness of the thesis statements using a rubric and records the scores for each student.

Obtrusive assessment is being employed in this scenario. Mr. Grace has provided his students with instruction and practice, and he is now directly administering an assessment for which he will record a score for each student.

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