Assessment is an integral part of instruction, as it determines whether or not the goals of education are being met. We have always believed that paper test is not the only way to assess students. Last week, the bilingual lower grades had fun and creative but challenging Chinese and math assessments which conformed more to their ages and mental needs.
The Chinese assessment for G1 included a paper exam and a fun test to evaluate students’ observation, thinking, expression and language skills. The children tried hard to earn points in the Knowledge Castle. The test covered the knowledge taught in classroom as well as those extended outside of textbooks.
In the math assessment we designed many fun games to assess children’s calculating, hands-on and problem-solving skills. Although some questions were quite challenging, our little inquirers didn’t give up but worked as hard as they could, which really amazed the teachers.
The G2 Chinese test was looking at students’ basic knowledge of this language and how they use it. We designed a number of scenarios based on the problems and conflicts we might encounter in our daily life. Children needed to find ways to solve these problems using the Chinese language and body language.
The Fun Assessments are not just about playing games! It requires students to be able to apply a lot of things they have learned. In the math test, they had to choose a tool from many measurement tools to measure the length of their nail, the width of a desk, and even to use a piece of yarn to measure their waist.
This practice, fully mobilizing the children, has allowed us to employ various methods to assess the students from different sides. The purpose of assessing a student is to find out if one can apply what he has learned in his life, but not to prove what and how much he can recite. We guide and encourage the children to learn independently, to apply the knowledge, and to finally become a lifelong learner.