Friday, October 11, 2013

Revised APPR Assessments Part 1: Kindergarten

I didn't really share the outcome of my post-assessments last year, mainly due to the fact that there was some confusion around them with calculations.  In the end, I "passed" and did all right, but my results weren't exactly where I wanted them to be for the post-assessment scores.  Thus, I revamped two of my assessments.  Last year, I did my SLO assessments in 5th, 2nd, 1st and Kindergarten.  My LLO was in 4th grade.  Lucky for me, I have one less to do this year!  This year, my SLO assessments are with Studio Art, Art 7, and 1st grade and I chose to use Kindergarten for my LLO so I could revamp my rubrics.

Today is our first Staff Development day and luckily, I have no place to be except in my classrooms working on my SLOs and LLO, which are technically due today!  In the next few posts, I'm going to share with you my old assessments from last year and what I plan on doing differently this year.  I'll also share with you how I am setting my goals, as I am doing something completely different this year as well.

Last year I did a cutting and gluing rubric and I had a 97% success rate at students passing, which was great, but made it seem as though the assessment wasn't quite as rigorous as it should have been.  So, this year, I changed up my plans for the Kindergarten assessment, and I've actually changed my mind twice about the pre-assessment.  Back in September I shared a post with my ideas for this year, which you can see here.  I originally gave students a shape sheet with fewer shapes and then a quiz that quizzed them on shapes, lines and basic color theory.  I was struggling to figure out how I would make sure those kinders could read their color words by the end of the year to take a "quiz" (since I would essentially have to create a test bank), and then I decided to scratch that idea, after I had already given out that assessment.

Now, I've decided to continue using the shape sheet for cutting and gluing but also the Hey Diddle Diddle Shape Cow project we just did.  This way, I am still assessing their cutting and gluing skills, but also their ability to draw shapes, their use of crayons and how they color.  As I looked at all of these projects, I realized that even though I was trying to teach them how to use the shapes and how to color properly, it's going to take a while for them to improve, so I should still be able to show growth.

These are the two activities being used for the kindergarten pre-assessment...

And these are the two rubrics being used for the kindergarten pre-assessments...

At the end of the year, students will then be assessed on cutting & gluing, as well as their coloring and shape skills all in one project...the primary playground project!  In that project, students have to cut out their own shapes and create a playground.  It will assess their ability to cut out shapes that are discernible from one another, how well they glue the shapes down (still using the dot glue method), and how well they utilize their entire paper.  Last year I did this as a review projects for primary colors and shapes, but it'll make a great end of the year assessment, I think.  Instead of having the students do it on 9"x12" paper, I'll give them the bigger sheets like I did for their pre-assessment cows.
Two kindergarten examples from last year, done back in February.

And this is the revamped rubric for assessing the post-assessment.

I know these rubrics are hard to read...I'm doing this at school right now and don't have a nicer way of taking a screen shot, so you can find them on the SmARTteacher.


  1. What do your acronyms stand for. I'm not familiar so it makes it difficult to follow your post. I am doing assess,nets similar to what you are implementing so I am very interested!

    1. Ah yes, so here they are:

      APPR: Annual Professional Performance Plan (the new way of being evaluated as a teacher)

      SLO: Student Learning Objective
      LLO: Local Learning Objective

      So here is how it works in my district. Under our APPR, our district chose the Marzano rubric for assessing our 60%. Under Marzano, you are assessed on teaching, lesson planning, reflecting on your teaching practices, and collegiality. We have various paperwork templates and lesson plans that we have to hand it throughout the year to prove ourselves in those categories, on top of formal, announced walkthroughs and unannounced walkthrough observations.

      The next 20% of our APPR comes from the SLO. Depending on what kind of teacher you are will essentially choose your SLO. If you are a teacher who has a state test, your SLO is basically, "80% of students will pass the Regents exam". If you are not a state test teacher, such as a remedial teacher, most end up choosing STAR or Castle Learning (reading programs on the computer) as a way to show growth. If you're a special area teacher, like me, you can choose to use a regional created assessment (if one was created) or you can choose to create your own assessment to show growth. I've done a combination of both.

      The final 20% of your APPR comes from the LLO. This is pretty much the same thing as the SLO. If you're a state test teacher, they usually go with the STAR or Castle Learning. If they are a non-tested teacher, most go with running records, and if you're a special area teacher, you pretty much follow the same protocol as the SLO...using a regionally created assessment or a district created assessment.