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Posted on December 30, 2012 11:06 am
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Heather Blue
Heather Blue
Reps: 142
Is it possible to set academic assessment expectations for ESL students
Mrs. Marcus had implemented the latest idea in educational assessment. She had studied and prepared for the introduction of portfolio assessment into her seventh grade classroom. The students, including her ESL (English as a Second Language) students, were excited about collecting their work in their very own portfolios. Mrs. Marcus explained to her students that their portfolios would be evaluated and shared with parents during conferences. After a few weeks of working on important assignments, students were allowed to organize their portfolios and enter their work. Mrs. Marcus informed the students of her specific academic expectations on each assignment. Unfortunately, she encountered some difficulties when evaluating the studentsí portfolios. She observed that her grading guidelines did not accommodate her ESL students. The second language learners were not meeting her expectations in the area of grammar and punctuation on the assignments. Mrs. Marcus realized that she had not taken into consideration the varied language acquisition stages of the ESL students.

Questions:
1. Should Mrs. Marcus return to her conventional assessment methods?
2. How can portfolios meet the needs of all students?
3. Is it possible to set academic assessment expectations for ESL students who have not yet acquired their new language?
 
     
     
 
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Solution 1
Posted February 11, 2013 1:00 pm

Courtney Cummings
Courtney Cummings
Reps: 31
1.No I do not think that Mrs. Marcus should return to her conventional assessment methods. I like how she wanted to try something new with her student portfolios. Her students were excited about collecting their work and sharing it with their parents. That she was able to get her students excited about writing and sharing is a great thing, and she should not change her assessment method after this small set back.
2.I think that the portfolios are a great assessment tool, and can meet the needs of all students. The ESL students may not have met her exact specific guidelines, but that does not mean that they failed the assessment. I think that she needs to make a few accommodations and changes to her grading rubric for the ESL student portfolios. I think that these portfolios will be especially helpful to the ESL students in showing their progress over time in their writing skills.
3.Yes Mrs. Marcus can set academic assessment expectations for her ESL students even though they have not mastered their new language yet. If it were me grading these portfolios I would look for content. Did the ESL student give me some of the information I was looking for? I would not stress over the grammar and mechanics at this stage.
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Kathy Allen
Kathy Allen
Reps: 100
I think your insight is interesting.
  Posted on: February 23, 2018 7:53 pm

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Solution 2
Posted February 11, 2013 7:05 am

Taylor Jones
Taylor Jones
Reps: 22
1. Mrs. Marcus does not have to go back to her conventional assessment method. She needs to find a solution to how she can accommodate the ESL students when evaluating their portfolios.
2. Portfolios are used to show student growth, so students should place their very best work in the portfolio. The portfolios show student progress throughout the school year so their progression should be evaluated. Portfolios should also be assessed based on student process and essential knowledge.
3. It is possible to set academic assessment expectations for ESL students who have not yet required their new language. These students may have different academic goals than the other students; but in the end, they should still be expected to be taught according to standards. These children are capable of learning the same material, just in a different way and/or a different timeline.
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Danielle Brock
Danielle Brock
Reps: 100
I agree with this case study. I will utilize this information once I become a teacher.
  Posted on: March 1, 2015 10:47 pm

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Solution 3
Posted February 18, 2013 8:22 pm

Sarah Hogan Johnson
Sarah Hogan Johnson
Reps: 163
1. I absolutely do not think Mrs. Marcus should return to her conventional assessment methods. Portfolios are great tools for students to learn to evaluate their own work. In most cases, students choose the work that goes into their portfolio. This is also a motivational tool. The students want to do their best work so it can be displayed in their own personal portfolio. Portfolios are also a good way to track student growth, as well as evaluating the student's as a whole. Mrs. Marcus should not return to her conventional methods.

2. Students are all different. Portfolios can be done on an individual basis. Students can have different assignments than their classmates in their portfolios. Students who needs to work on writing a formal letter for example, could write a letter at the beginning of the year, the middle of the year, and the end of the year to evaluate growth. Another student may be working on a math project for their portfolio. It all depends on what the student needs to improve.

3. It is possible to set separate academic assessment expectations for ESL students. ESL students could work on grammar and punctuation as the emphasis of their portfolio. The assignments should also be modified to meet the needs of these students as necessary. Therefore, for those modifications, you would have a different rubric. Assignments should be modified for ESL learners. Key words should be highlighted and fully defined, longer sentences should be broken into two or more sentences, and any culturally bound terms should be omitted or replaced with more common terms.
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Solution 4
Posted February 13, 2013 5:02 pm

Meredith Talley
Meredith Talley
Reps: 30
Mrs. Marcus should not return to her conventional assessment methods! Portfolios are one of the best ways to assess a students progress, and really see what they know. A portfolio shows the student's best work. The work chose for a portfolio is chosen specifically because it is the best they've done. This meets the needs of all students because a portfolio is meant to show progress. Whether the student is gifted or ESL, the portfolio will show progress. It is definitely possible to set academic assessment expectations for ESL students. They need goals just as much as any other child does. This is where her modifications should come in when she is grading the portfolios.
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Solution 5
Posted February 15, 2013 5:05 pm

Ashley Hedick
Ashley Hedick
Reps: 27
1. I think that Mrs. Marcus should continue to use the portfolio method in her classroom. Students enjoy doing portfolios and they are able to show off their work instead of having to take tests to show what they know.
2. Portfolios are able to show the teacher and anyone else what the students are capable of. They are not under the pressure of taking a test and are able to show what they know. It also shows how the students have progressed over the year. You can go back to the first day of school and then compare it to their work at the end of the year. This will vividly show what the students have learned and where they still need to work harder on.
3. I think that it is possible to set basic academic assessment expectations for the ESL students. The teachers still need to work one on one more with these students to make sure that they are understanding the new language and that they are learning it correctly. These students should not be held to the same standards in English as students who were born in English speaking homes though.
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Solution 6
Posted February 11, 2013 11:49 am

Rachel P
Rachel P
Reps: 22
Mrs. Marcus does not need to go back to conventional assessment but maybe just revamp the new one to accomidate second language learners. Maybe giving those students extra help proofreading will help their portfolio. It is possible to set expectations for these students, but make sure they are receiving the proper help and guidance during the activity. You do not want to expect less from students just because they are second language learners.
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