Brookfieldgoes further and and states that good teachers should also go further and seekadvice and feedback from their peers – Our Colleagues ‘Experiences. Peerassessment is not limited to just the children and is of importance to theteaching faculty also.
The fourth lens that fosters critically reflectiveteaching is contained in scholarly literature on higher Education. In Summary,Brookfield argues that to be an excellent teacher it is important tocontinually attempt to shape teaching and learning environments into democraticspaces of knowledge exchangeBrookfield(2002) emphasises the importance of critical reflection in relation toeffective teaching. The aim of a critically reflective teacher, according toBrookfield, is to develop an increased understanding of their teaching from asmany different vantage points as possible. He went further to suggest fourlenses that can be used in a process of critical reflection – the autobiographical,the student’s eyes, our colleague’s experiences and theoretical literature. Theautobiographical lenses focus on the importance of self-reflection. Teachersmay focus on their previous experiences as a learner or on their experiences asa teacher in order to “become aware of the paradigmatic assumptions andinstinctive reasonings that frame how we work” (p.30).
The use ofquestioning could be of benefit to the teacher to reflect on their own work. Thestudent’s eyes lense can be in the form of student self-evaluation, peer assessment,student journals – All evident in artefact 2.Questioningis an invaluable assessment technique that was utilised in Artefact 2.Questioning is useful for both the teacher and the child. Teacher questioningcan assess the child’s knowledge and understanding of areas which enables themto engage and foster the child’s future learning assess.
Children also use questions to aid there learning. (NCCA,2007). Effective questioning is of crucial importance.
The teacher must ensureto model good questioning which in turn will help the children progress in relationto asking good questions to foster their own learning (NCCA, 2007). B Peerassessment is also evident throughout artefact 2. This is where peers evaluatethe products or the learning outcomes of others in their group.
Peer assessmentcan contribute to the students’ active participation and re?ection on thelearning process by questioning the learning of their peers. Assessment,according to Biggs and Tang (2007) encompasses a wide range of methods andtechniques. Throughout Artefact 2 many assessment methods were referred to.Self-assessment is a formative method of assessment that has gained inpopularity in recent times. The children are directly involved in their ownassessment by analysing their own work in a reflective way, identifying areasthat could be improved on and setting personal learning goals (NCCA, 2007). Researchhas illustrated how self-assessment can be used to encourage studentinvolvement, motivation, learning and responsibility. However, it is notwithout its challenges. Despite the host of bene?ts and policies pertaining toself-assessment, a review of the literature illustrates that students oftenoverestimate their abilities, whereby, their self assessments may only hold atenuous relationship with their actual academic performance (Sadler and Good,2006).
Gathering feedback from students can providevaluable insight into teaching and learning. For Brookfield (2002), whenteachers reflect on their practice using the student lens they become moreresponsive to the needs of studentsOn theother hand, formative assessment is viewed as the antithesis of summativeassessment as it evolves around the needs of the classroom as a whole and ismodified and enhanced to fulfil the learning demands of each individual studentto ensure each student acquires a consummate and organic understanding of theideas and teachings being studied in the classroom. Formative assessment, beingperceptibly less rigid and obtuse than summative assessment, is unequivocallymore appropriate for the requirements of arts and physical education. Forassessment to be formative, teachers must identify individual students’learning needs and adjust their teaching accordingly.
Teachers and students areinteractively involved in the assessment process (Keane and Griffin, 2015). Gruber(2008) argues that assessment in the visual arts must not be labour intensiveor intrusive but ongoing and linked to a learning objective. This is evident inartefact 2.Summativeassessment techniques would inhibit the learning process in lessons such asthose in Artefact 2 where co-ordinated group work and organisation and freeself-expression, without the need for robust assessment are paramount.Collins(2015) highlights two contrasting theories of assessment that are most commonlyused in Irish classrooms.
Summative assessment is the traditional form ofassessment that most people are familiar with. It is characterized byhighly-pressurized end of term assessments and robust standardization whichemphasizes rote learning and do not advocate a deeper comprehension of thematerial being studied while also impairing the necessity of self-assessmentand group work oriented projects which lend themselves to peer-to-peer learningsystems. Typically, a grade is the only feedback the student receives, leadingBlack and William (1998) to conclude that summative assessment offers littleguidance on how work can actually be improved. Dochy and Moerkerke (1997) state thattraditional testing methods go against the aims of long term learning, effectivethinking, critical analyse, self assessment and problem-solving skills.TheNCCA’s guidelines on assessment focus on two principal approaches to assessment– assessment for learning (AFL) and assessment of learning (AOL).
AOL is wherethe teacher periodically monitors an individual’s progress and standard achieved.This is usually done with the purpose of reporting to parents, teachers andother relevant parties (NCCA, 2007). On the other hand, in AFL, the teacher usesevidence on an ongoing basis to inform teaching and learning (NCCA, 2007).
Unlike AOL, the student isinvolved in the assessment process. Participation from the student provides theteacher with an insight into the students’ progress and it helps to identifythe learner’s individual motivation and needs. AFL is predominantly used inthis artefact.Assessment is an integralpart in the inclusive primary classroom. Assessment ensures that the primarycurriculum is accessible to all.
Assessmentis defined by Aistear as the ‘on-going process of collecting, documenting,reflecting on, and using information to develop rich portraits of children aslearners in order to support and enhance their future learning’ (NCCA, 2009,p.72). Assessment is a key area of learning anddevelopment. It aids both students and teachers. Assessment is designed tobuild a clear picture of a child’s progress and/or achievement in learningacross the Primary School Curriculum generally over a period. It helps both parties determine the level ofunderstanding in relation to course material and it also plays a crucial rolein relation to the inclusive primary school.
Assessment is an invaluable toolfor teachers as it helps determine the learning needs of the child. Effectiveassessment should enhance and support the successful inclusion of all children whoare potentially vulnerable to be excluded, including those with SEN. NCSE(2011, p109) states ‘Inclusive assessment provides meaningful experiences andfeedback to pupils and parents/guardians and is age and curriculum appropriate’