As part of our Eleebana Gifted and Talented Kindergarten project, we have been focusing on the importance of feedback (a formative assessment strategy). It is quite timely given that Semester 1 reports (a summative assessment tool) are currently being prepared by teachers to report to parents about student academic progress so far this year.
Feedback to any pupil should be about the particular qualities of his or her work, with advice on what he or she can do to improve, and should avoid comparisons with other pupils.
Giving our students regular feedback is a very important part of the process of design-based learning. We have been using student-centred pedagogies or teaching strategies – DT (design thinking) and GBL (games based learning). Both have a strong focus on feedback as a ‘loop’, creatively referred to as a ‘feedback loop’.
The ultimate user of assessment information which is elicited in order to improve learning is the pupil.
Here’s how our process works:
After reviewing lots of board games, 3/4E students drafted a couple of their own original game prototypes. These board games designs needed to teach Kindergarten students how to program BeeBots to move around the board (spatial and logical thinking) while learning concepts that include: healthy eating, the human body, making healthy choices, the effects of growth and change (conceptual thinking).
3/4E students showed their Kindergarten buddies their prototypes. They negotiated together to select the game design they liked the most
(1st feedback loop).
3/4E students revised and modified their prototypes and did a test run of their designs with a classmate and their buddies (2nd feedback loop).
This week, Mrs. Birleson and I have been giving more detailed feedback to each student about their game. At this point, it is critical to make sure that the object of the game is achievable yet challenging, not to mention fun! (3rd feedback loop).
Watch this video to see what Andrew has to say about the feedback process: