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ERIC Number: EJ859270
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2009
Pages: 4
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: N/A
ISSN: ISSN-1052-8938
The Dangerous Necessity of Assessment: A Teacher's Dilemma
Furman, Cara
Horace, v24 n4 Spr 2009
As a first and second grade teacher at a public, progressive, East Village school, the word assessment is a daily part of the author's life. Assessment means watching and knowing the children in all areas. It is figuring out, as effectively as possible, how their minds and personalities work. Though she has found a place in her teaching for assessment to be meaningful and productive, a place from which she can describe every student as gifted because she sees and understands the areas in which they are, assessment still looms over them. The students in her class go through cycles. Often they seem happy, confident in their abilities, able to recognize various strengths in themselves and others. Yet it seems that whenever she feels confident that they have truly made progress, something happens that shows her how deeply the underlying concern about assessment is imbedded in them, and in her. This ranges from individual feelings of failure after struggling to master an easily assessed skill like spelling to a general consensus that a certain child is the "smartest" in the class. She keeps struggling to make her class a safe and honest environment, to make it a place where her assessments are clear to kids and parents, where they value children's progression and movement, and not only their abilities. She has no definitive answers. All she has is the underlying sense that at its core, assessment must be about looking for ways to help children learn more by about finding the ways and places in which they shine.
Coalition of Essential Schools. 1330 Broadway Suite 600, Oakland, CA 94612. Tel: 510-433-1451; Fax: 510-433-1455; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Opinion Papers
Education Level: Grade 1; Grade 2
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: New York