Data stinks….until it becomes relevant

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Mrs. Marino’s 4th grade class

Yep, I said THAT word. The word that almost everyone in education dreads. But, it truly can be an extremely powerful tool if understood and implemented the correct way. This is a new concept to me, so my students and I will learn together as we go through this process. I have read quite a bit of research this summer on the power of students tracking their own data. Will it work for my class? I sure hope so. First of all, everything I have read about this concept has been extremely interesting . Secondly, when this is executed correctly it can be quite powerful for students. I went back and forth on how I would implement this in my 4th grade classroom this year, and this is what I came up with. I made this chart for my students to keep in their binder behind their data tab. It is a simple chart where they will fill in each assignment that we have. When grades are returned they will color in the correct box. Here are a few key points my students and I covered when I introduced this concept yesterday:

1. This is for YOU, not your parents. We send home grade sheets for your parents.

2. This is a way to quickly glance and assess how you are progressing throughout the 6 weeks.

3. Which row of boxes would we prefer to be in?

4. What happens if we make a mistake and end up in a row that doesn’t make us happy?

5. What is a goal, and how can we reach it?

I am nervous about this but very excited. If I can keep this organized, make sure they are tracking their data, and have student conferences where we discuss the good, the bad, and the ugly then I know that this process will be very effective for my students and myself. Wish us luck as we shake things up and try something new. I will absolutely assess things after the first six weeks and let y’all know how it is going.

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4 thoughts on “Data stinks….until it becomes relevant

  1. Data is indeed powerful when students understand and can track their own progress. Student-led conferences should focus on strengths and weaknesses, goal setting, and a plan for meeting goals. This can only happen when students are self-tracking. Cannot wait to see how this unfolds in your classroom!

  2. Wow seems impressive! you’re empowering the students track their own learning. I am a firm believer of the precious tool data could be when gathered and analyzed properly. All the best with your venture, I too would love to keep track of how it all unfolds :).

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