Teachers are reporting comments like this from students after implementing a student self-analysis procedure after our common assessments. These carefully crafted analysis sheets allow students to see from their own finger tips how they specifically performed on their exam at the objective level. The powerful thing of it is that they become less concerned about the overall grade and more concerned about the objective. Learning is revealed at the objective level which is truly a major focus of teaching.
Each common assessment has two sections. One section assesses content just completed in the six week period. I typically call this "new content" since it new to being assessed through the common assessment. The second section assesses the prior six week period content so it is more review in nature. Each student self-analysis then looks at these two sections differently. Both sections allow for student input and interaction particularly with their teacher.
For the new content section, students simply graph or indicate how many questions they correctly answered out of the total for that particular objective. It there are 10 questions and a student got 7 correct, they basically got a 70 on that objective. We generally have about two or three objectives in this new section. From here, each student writes a goal about how they would like to score on this objective in the next common assessment. Rick Stiggins suggested this aspect and it has proven to very good as I'll you'll read below.
In section two, students look at how they scored on the review or previous six week objectives. Not only do they compute their success, but they also look to see if they did better, the same, or worse. They are also looking to see if they met their goal. Hint, teachers do this too which leads to interesting conversations in data conferences on topics such as retention, concept recovery, maintaining successful performance or maintaining unsuccessful performance. Anyway, back to the students. As students learned how to complete the analysis, it began to sink in that they could literally see number evidence of improvement. As one girl said, "...you mean I actually did better?" As her words spread out in the classroom, it caused a chain reaction and others started looking more carefully at their increases or declines. The "engagement", as we say, was through the roof. I must say that the student blurting these things out is one that has a history of causing the teacher grief but in this moment of clarity, learning (evidence thereof) was exciting and she was intrinsically ready to learn more.
These student self-analysis take different forms for each grade level and subject but I must say, they are worth their salt. Thanks Rick Stiggins and others who have suggested the goal setting part. It works.
Let me know what works for you.