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Once their self-consciousness or resistance lowers, ideas will begin to flow again. These insights might then be developed into formal writing assignments, or at least be contributed to discussions.


Note also that freewriting is often personal and messy. It should be a low-stakes writing activity for students, and should therefore remain ungraded. One-minute papers are usually written in class on an index card or scrap of paper, or out-of-class via email. The limited space of the card forces students to focus and also presents such a small amount of writing space that it usually lowers levels of writing anxiety.

Creative Ideas For Teaching Evaluation: Activities, Assignments and Resources

On their cards, students may be asked to summarize, to question, to reiterate, to support or counter a thesis or argument, or to apply new information to new circumstances. Such writing helps students to digest, apply, and challenge their thinking, achieving enough confidence to contribute fruitfully to class discussions. These short writing assignments also deliver quick, valuable feedback to instructors on what students are learning. Scenarios are short, imaginative writing activities that allow students to broach a topic or apply content to new contexts.

Examples of scenario activities include writing letters, editorials, memos, and persona pieces such as dialogues or role play. They may be structured or unstructured, requiring students to complete frequent short entries in which they, for example, summarize material, connect course topics with their observations and experiences, answer questions you design, or reflect on their own notes using double-entry notebooks.

Unlike individual short writing assignments, logbooks compile student writing throughout an assignment, a unit, or semester and, like portfolios, allow students to see the development of their observations, ideas, and skills. These notes may be kept in notebooks, binders, or electronic folders. Students may associate those terms with strictly personal records of intimate thoughts and wishes and day-to-day activity.

Students need to be clear that the purpose of a logbook is the open public record of ideas and findings. Microthemes , conventionally similar to the one-minute paper, have, in practice, taken the form of one-page papers written outside class. Informal and exploratory, these assignments should, again, present students with low-risk situations where they can feel free to speculate and work through their thoughts, paving the way for more sophisticated analysis and evaluation.

Examples include the following:. If the primary purpose of informal writing is learning rather than communicating what has been learned and if the intended audience is usually limited to the writer, how are instructors advised to grade or respond to the writing generated by these activities? With this in mind, consider the following strategies for working with completed informal assignments:. Longer pieces of writing done outside class microthemes, logbooks, response papers are read for content. Instructor or peer comments should focus primarily on relevance to the assignment and quality of ideas.

Writing supportive and engaging comments is, of course, the ideal as these comments will reinforce the idea that these informal assignments are indeed about exploration and the pursuit of insight.

15 Formative Assessment Activities You’ll Love Using

If writing substantial comments is not an option time-wise, you or a classmate can still note brief questions and reactions in the margins. Respond with a simple check plus excellent , check satisfactory , or check minus sub-adequate and, if time is limited, minimal comments:. These resources are appropriate for kindergarten, first, second, and third grade teachers. Cyclone Teaching Guide. Dork Diaries Teaching Guide. The Bell Bandit Discussion Guide. Discussion Guide for the Novels of Maria Testa. Parrot in the Oven Reading Guide. Caleb's Story Reading Guide.

The Importance of Wings Discussion Guide.

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Ancestry and Family Tree Slideshow. Plan a Holiday With Your Family. Family Tree: Student Planning Page. Family Tree PowerPoint Presentation. Silent to the Bone Reader's Guide. The Report Card Teacher's Guide. In the span of a few weeks, a false rumor that Hillary Clinton and her top aides were involved in various crimes snowballed into a wild conspiracy theory that they were running a child-trafficking ring out of a Washington pizza parlor.

The fast evolution of the false theory revealed how a powerful mix of fake news and social media led an armed North Carolina man to investigate the rumors about the pizza place. Finally, try this exercise , created by the journalist Andrew Revkin for his graduate class in making the most of online communication at Pace University.

40 Alternative Assessment Ideas for Learning | TeachHUB

In light of the role that fake news played in the election, he recently updated his idea on the self-publishing site Medium. He walks through examples for you to follow there. Each week, determine the path one bit of information took to get to you. If it was a powerful photo of a drowned refugee child, did it come via Facebook?

If so, was it forwarded by a friend from some other friend or feed? Who created the content? As he points out, this exercise shows the ways in which information moves through social media and how easily its origins can become obscured. Consider the Effects of Fake News on Democracy:. The fake-news phenomenon is not the result of personal failings. And it is not limited to one end of the political spectrum. Partisan refraction has fueled the rise of fake news, according to researchers who study the phenomenon.

Does this ring true for your students? How, according to the article, can that become a vicious cycle that leads to more and more political extremism? What does it mean if, in the heated discussions over the effects of fake news on democracy and civil society, Donald J. Trump has often taken center stage? Finally, invite them to apply these questions to this Op-Ed piece, published after Mr.

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It begins:. Trump made clear that the gatekeeper role once played by major news media organizations has vanished in the digital age. This poses a deep danger for legitimate, aggressive journalism, especially from the president-elect, who has been consistent in his heavy-handed demonization of any and all media whenever he dislikes critical but accurate stories about him. Is Mr. What evidence can you offer for your argument? And, if so, what will that mean for our democracy? What role does a free press play in protecting a free society? To make these questions tangible, students might try the following exercises:.

Have them share their results, perhaps using this activity sheet to take their analysis further. What can they conclude? What is it saying?