Student Engagement Plan, Part II

At Mount Vernon we are charged with creating a model that systematically seeks feedback and measures attitudes, perceptions, and beliefs of students about their work, the School environment, and their participation and contribution within the School community.

Part I of this model includes student surveys. One survey we are designing focuses on: perceptions of learning, feedback, instructional strategies, and student involvement in questions and discussions. Future surveys will include student perceptions of home learning experiences (also known as homework) and ideas for summer reading and math learning experiences. I would love your ideas on additional areas we should focus our survey creation.

Part II of the model, which perhaps should be part I, is more immediate feedback on daily classroom learning ¬†experiences and procedures. These models are based on the work of Nicole Vagle and used with permission. For more research, read her and Chapman’s book Motivating Students: 25 Strategies to Light the Fire of Engagement.

Student reflection journals are effective for students to wrap their heads around a big idea (We call this practice “Creating a Headline.”), record a new idea and the evidence learned (We call this practice “Claim, Support.”), realize how our perceptions change (We call this practice, “I used to think, now I think.”), or wrestle with some further inquiry or curiosity about the day’s learning (We just call this, “I wonder…”).

In addition to reflection journals, teachers and students benefit from exit slips that ask students the best and hardest part of the lesson or provide a quick 1-5 scale to represent their attitude after a lesson.

Younger students may be able to share their attitude by coloring a smiling or frowning face at the bottom of an assessment to indicate how they feel. Here is one simple example.

Another opportunity for student feedback is to ask their confidence level by circling the phrase that best describes how a student thinks he or she did on the assessment. This scale would appear at the end of an assessment.

Imagine the impact on teacher planning and student learning as we increasingly solicit and reflect upon student feedback.

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