7 ways to assess without using tests

With reports on the horizon, assessing children’s performance and effort can be quite a challenging task for educators. Some educators find this more challenging than others. If you are one of those who could do with some guidance as to how you can go about assessing your pupils without the use of formal testing the read on to find 5 ways to assess your pupils informally.

7 ways to assess without testing

  1. Use children’s work:
    Throughout the year children produce an insurmountable amount of work. That is checked for mistakes but it should also be used as the basis for assessing both children’s performance and progress they make.
  2. Observations:
    Watching children interact with the content as well as with their peers, during group work, will give you an insight on how much they are learning. You can also make an informal record for yourself of things that are noticeable during that time. You can use those records to help you, when it comes to giving a mark or grade.
  3. Listening and discussing:
    A meaningful discussion will tell you a lot about how much a child has learned and how deep their understanding is. A child who cannot talk about their learning the content they have been taught, has not fully understood it.
  4. Projects:
    Assign project work and encourage and encourage children to explore areas of interest. Use the project criteria to guide you for your assessment. Have they met the criteria? To what extent? Can they give an explanation of what they did and why? These types of assignments will be more meaningful to the children and will show the teacher many aspects of children’s growth within the learning process.
  5. Presentations:
    You’ve assigned the project, now ask them to present it. For something to be presented it first needs to be owned. Use the presentations to assess them, have they understood what they had to do? Where they able to answer questions about their projects? Have they included key vocabulary? All these things can be used to guide the educator’s assessment.
  6. Games:
    Use educational games to assess children’s understanding and performance. There are so many games available online. Choose an appropriate one that covers what you want to assess and give it to the children to play. They will have an enjoyable time playing and revising and you will have a fun time assessing them.
  7. Assessment for learning:
    Ask the children to assess their own learning.There are many ways this can be done: using the traffic light system, using smiley faces, cards, lists; Choose one that suits you and your class. Use their self-assessment to help guide your assessment of them.

Have faith in yourself, as an educator, you do not solely need a test to assess your pupils. Yes, tests are useful and at times needed, but let’s try to think outside of the box here. All of us are assessing our pupils daily without knowing it, it’s part of our chosen profession, it is sometimes so ingrained in us that we fail to see it and use it without second-guessing our judgement.

Happy report completing! 🙂

Till next time…


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