Upon entering my three-week block, my concerns are threefold. First, I worry about creating meaningful assessments for my students in the music classroom. How can I ensure that I adequately check their understanding in a way that is not “busy work” for them? Next, I worry about knowing what can be expected from the students. How will I know what is too easy or too difficult? How will I adapt and humbly accept my mistakes in creating assessments? Lastly, I worry about my ability to communicate assessment expectations with students. Anecdotally, I see expectations for music students to be incredibly varied across the city and province. How will I ensure that students will be able to “speak my language” when it comes to musical instruction?
I plan to ask my cooperating teacher the following about assessment:
- Considering the size of the average high school choir, how do you provide meaningful assessments for each student?
- How closely do you follow the curriculum when creating assessments? Do you rely more on the document or your own experiences? How has this changed over time?
- Given the high use of Creative Productive curricular outcomes in the music classroom, how do you incorporate the Cultural Historical and Critical Responsive aspects of the curriculum?
Engaging with my peer’s work through the presentations has inspired me to look for ways to include 21st-century competencies in my classroom as a way to not only engage my students but prepare them for the world ahead. In viewing these presentations, I am also reminded that I am not entering teaching on my own. As I move into schools I have the ability to learn and collaborate with colleagues and pre-interns alike, asking and observing to draw ideas to use in my own classroom. Although my assessment may look different in music, the principles of assessment outlined through this course and the presentations will guide me. For example, using ample formative assessment and preparing students for summative assessment through feedback can be utilized in almost any setting. I am excited to employ these strategies for my pre-internship and to create learning opportunities for students in my classroom.