Recent work that has examined the impact of what are variously called periodic, interim, benchmark, or diagnostic assessments, typically administered three or four times during a school year, has produced mixed findings. For instance, one study reported small significant effects in mathematics in grades 3-8, but not in reading (Carlson et al., 2011). Other research however, has reported significant effects on both mathematics and reading (Slavin et al., 2011)....
Dynamic assessment is currently discussed in educational literature as one of the most promising practices in stimulating learning among various groups of students, including gifted and potentially gifted students. The present study investigates effects of dynamic assessment on mathematics achievement among elementary school students, with potential giftedness analyzed as additional predictor. Two samples of primary school students participated in a quasi-experimental study: the experimental condition consisted in application of dynamic assessment procedures, contrasted with regular classroom assessment in the control condition. Math achievement was measured with curriculum-based tests, and potential giftedness was estimated based on nomination scores assigned by classroom teachers and parents for each child. Results suggest that dynamic assessment procedures produce significant effects on math achievement among elementary school students, and potential giftedness enhances this effect. Study limitations and educational implications are discussed, and further research paths are indicated.
A Numeracy Strategy was trialled in 30 at-risk schools in Fiji. A Training Needs Analysis and a review of the Fiji Islands Literacy and Numeracy Assessment helped decide on the focus of the trial. Teachers were introduced to Classroom Based Assessment and child centred pedagogy, which they used over a four-week period. Students showed considerable improvement in their mathematics knowledge and attitudes. Teachers' knowledge and confidence in using classroom based assessment to improve students' numeracy also improved. (Contains 3 tables and 4 figures.) [For the complete proceedings, "Shaping the Future of Mathematics Education. Proceedings of the Annual Conference of the Mathematics Education Research Group of Australasia (33rd, Freemantle, Western Australia, Australia, July 3-7, 2010)."
Supporting students to develop an understanding of the meaning of fractions is an important goal of elementary school mathematics. This involves developing partitioning strategies, creating representations, naming fractional quantities, and using symbolic notation. This article describes how teachers can use a formative assessment problem to elicit and understand students' ideas about the meaning of fractions. The fraction problem described in this article was designed using research on children's thinking in elementary mathematics, and it enables teachers to uncover students' understanding of the following essential aspects of understanding the meaning of fractions: (1) partitioning strategies; (2) representations; and (3) language and notation.