H. MacDonell

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English 10

English 12

English IB

Assessment for Learning

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Standard 1:  Clear and Appropriate Learning Targets.  Does the assessment author have a clear picture of  what she or he is trying to measure?


  • Are the student learning targets stated and easy to find?
  • Are the student learning targets focused--there are not too many?
  • Are they clear?  Would teachers agree on what they mean?
  • Are they good?  Do they represent the heart of the discipline and are they worth the instructional and assessment time devoted to them? Is there a clear connection to standards?
  • Do the stated learning targets reflect a bigger plan to cover all important learning targets over time?  Do they reflect a bigger plan across grade levels--previous and next learning--in a continuous progress curriculum?

Reflections:  At the beginning stages of planning a learning activity the teacher must be clear about what  outcome is being targeted.  Finding and rewording the outcome in language that the students can understand is a first step.

In my classroom example, I will be referring to a short story writing activity.  The outcomes I will be using as stated in the provincial document are:

  • Students will be expected to use writing and other ways of representing to explore, clarify and reflect on their thoughts, feelings and experiences, and learning; and to use their imagination.
  • use writing and other ways of representing to explore extend, and reflect on their experiences with insights into challenging texts and issues.
  • Students will be expected to create texts collaboratively and independently, using a variety of forms for a range of audiences and purposes.
  • demonstrate an understanding of the ways in which the construction of texts can create, enhance, ore control meaning and make critical choices of form, style and content to address increasingly complex demands of different purposes and audiences.
  • Students will be expected to use a range of strategies to develop effective writing and other ways of representing and to enhance their clarity, precision and effectiveness.
  • use the conventions of written language accurately and consistently in final products.


Because the language in these outcomes is obtuse , they need to be reworded into sentences that are easy for the students to understand:

  1. Students will plan and workshop various aspects of a short story
  2. Students will write a short story on an issue that  has relevance in their lives
  3. Students will use the tools of the short story writer
  4. Students will be able to edit their writing with attention to word choice, spelling, grammar and sentence writing


Classroom example