Educator Stories
Mar 16

Four Ways to Deliver Fun, Fast Formative Assessments

The term ‘assessment’ usually doesn’t fall in the same category as words like ‘fun’ and ‘fast’. However, formative checks given strategically and effectively can also be entertaining, engaging, informative, and quick.

Photo courtesy of @MrsCraneMCE

The term ‘assessment’ usually doesn’t fall in the same category as words like ‘fun’ and ‘fast’. However, formative checks given strategically and effectively can also be entertaining, engaging, informative, and quick. As a Codie Award finalist in the Best Formative Assessment Solution category, Quizizz knows this better than most other learning platforms.

Beyond amusement, teachers realize the overall goal of formative assessment is to provide a process for scheduled and continuous opportunities to gather meaningful data and improve student learning. According to the Council of Chief State School Officers (CCSSO), who published “Revising the Definition of Formative Assessment” in March 2022, students should also play an active role in understanding their own measures of mastery.

As testing season nears, educators know now is a key time to capture student data, and develop plans to close the gaps. With the help of several teachers using Quizizz like true all stars, here are a few fresh formative assessment ideas to use in your own classroom:

1. Before the Lesson

Depending on your school, grade level, or subject area, the class kickoff activity has many different names — do now, warm up, bell work — but the goal remains the same: activate prior knowledge and assess what students know before the lesson begins. As explained in this “Tech It Out With Quizizz” Webinar, creating start-of-class quick checks in Quizizz couldn’t be any easier.

Teachers can search from 20 million educator-created activities to use an existing assignment, or teleport in only certain questions, or design a new Quiz or Lesson from scratch. With six different question types available on Quizizz, teachers can ask recall-style questions using multiple choice, for example, or even higher-order thinking prompts with our open-ended or draw questions. Laura Bald offers a great example:

2. During the Lesson

After your start-of-class snapshot is complete, it’s go-time on instruction. Once you’ve rolled out a couple concepts, it’s best to stop and check for student understandings before moving any further. As Michele Crossan said, the Lessons mode in Quizizz is perfect for this kind of seamless integration of a formative checkpoint:

Another reason Quizizz works well as a formative tool is because the gamification elements motivate students to remain fully engaged the entire time. The low-stakes, self-paced style of participation provides more meaningful learning experiences for students, and more accurate mid-lesson data for teachers. Based on the immediate insights found in Quizizz reports, teachers can pivot in real-time and/or make changes for upcoming lessons if needed.

As explained by Education Week, online learning platforms are some of the most innovative and powerful formative assessment tools that will carry classes into the future. As an additional bonus, the engagement factor of platforms like Quizizz helps teachers minimize misbehaviors, fidgeters, fighters, and especially sleepers. When students genuinely enjoy the learning process, as they clearly do in Kelly Endsley’s class, instruction can be exciting again.

3. After the Lesson

Periodic check-ins throughout the lesson are necessary, but it’s the end-of-class assessment that really shows what students know. The value of this data, as explained by the Northwest Evaluation Association (NWEA), is incredibly powerful. In the case of Quizizz, our reports provide only the most meaningful data.

Along with the ability to use the results to inform future instruction, Quizizz reports offer insights that help with intervention, enrichment, intentional groupings, and more. Keisha McGee mastered this process like a pro. Quizizz reports can also be customized, downloaded, and shared to other colleagues and parents, as well as integrated with your school’s LMS.

4. Anytime (homeroom, SEL, lunch, study hall, free period)

While mostly used for academic purposes, formative assessments also work well as a way to check in on the kids from a personal standpoint. Genuine teacher-to-student relationships, as well as openness peer-to-peer, help foster a classroom culture of mutual respect, compassion, empathy, honesty, and authenticity. Quizizz content goes beyond basic material by including thoughtful activities so your class can grow these relationships, and cultivate a sense of family. Quizizz Featured Educator Laura Boyd is great about reminding teachers that technology can be used for this purpose.

Not every moment of instruction will be perfect, but educators should feel empowered to access quality tools that motivate students, and advance every learner in the class towards mastery. By using Quizizz for formative assessments, teachers are one step closer to ensuring that education, engagement — and even entertainment — can go hand in hand.

Looking for more professional development on this topic? The ‘Formative Assessment’ Quizizz Lesson by Kay Greene offers 17 slides for a quick personal review, or perhaps a presentation at your next staff meeting.

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