Do you need a complex form or test to assess how your student is progressing in school? Well, most of us assess people and situations all the time. Today, HSLDA Special Needs Coordinator Faith Berens joins host Mike Farris on Home School Heartbeat to help you make informal evaluations in your homeschool.
Faith, on our last program, you explained why assessments are an important part of effective teaching. They enable parents to determine their student’s learning level, plan their instruction, teach, and then evaluate. Would you explain what role informal evaluations have in all this process and how they fit into the whole situation?
Sure! Informal assessments are simply quick checks that a parent-teacher can do either daily, weekly, or even quarterly that will document the child’s growth in a particular area or skill over time. So this allows one to see if the child is retaining information, mastering the skills, and if the method of instruction is being effective.
Some examples of informal assessments are sight word checklists, behavior checklists, teacher rating scales, teacher observation notes, work samples, retelling—things like this. They’re very helpful to help us document growth.
Faith, I know that both my wife and I, but especially my wife, do this kind of informal assessment on a regular basis. And the fact that you’re working daily with your child, year after year, gives you the ability to really pay attention to how they’re doing. And that informal basis of evaluation really is an important part of the teaching strategy.
Thanks for your participation! I’m Mike Farris.