How Formative Assessment May Support Pupils’ Learn Essay

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Critically analyse how formative assessment may support pupils’ learning. Support analysis with observations and evidence from school experiences.

Formative assessment is the process of continually assessing and evaluating a pupil’s progress and educational needs and direction. (Coffey). Assessment is not restricted to any one method but rather encompasses all activities partaken within school where information learned is used to enhance teaching and learning. Assessment becomes formative assessment when the information learned is used to feedback to pupils and used as the basis of a plan to improve students’ learning and educational attainment. Formative assessment permits future ‘learning’ to be tailored to the learning needs of each individual child and teaching practices can be shaped towards fulfilling their full learning potential.

There are several different types of formative assessment, for example:

  1. Informal conversation between teacher/pupil

  2. Feedback

  3. Benchmarking

  4. Specialized programs such as BRP

All of these are important and useful methods of assessment and highlight the point that formative assessment takes place throughout the day from when the pupil first enters school to leaving the playground. Teachers and pupils have opportunities throughout the day to make assessments. How they use this assessment to further learning is critical in the success of pupil learning. As the DfES say ‘Good-quality assessment is essential for planning children’s learning, based on their performance, so that they are stretched to achieve to their full potential.’ (DfES 2003 p. 22.)

For the Purpose of this assignment I will focus on formative assessment within year 2 pupils and their Literacy programs. In particular I am going to focus on the Better Reading Partnership (BRP) within my placement school.

There are many different reading programs used within primary schools throughout the UK such as ‘Reading a-z’, ‘Kingscourt...

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