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The use of Portfolios

Posted: Thu Jun 28, 2012 8:48 pm
by simone.brazil
In my school the students compile portfolios of their written work throughout the year. I think this is a great way for students to demonstrate their effort and progression throughout the year. Some of the writing is what the teacher puts in and then the student chooses what else they want to add. At the end of the year, students choose their best work and critique how they have grown. I think that this is a great idea for students to be able to evaluate their learning and growth, however for most of the students they don’t seem interested in really charting their growth. Their best piece is saved for them to see next year while they can take the rest home, but many seem to choose a random writing assignment as their best piece and then throw their folders out. Does anyone have any suggestions to turn this portfolio assessment into a worthwhile assessment as it should be?

Portfolio as assessment tool

Posted: Tue Mar 19, 2013 7:27 am
by Nadler
Hello Simone,
First of all I really like your idea of using portfolios as evaluation for growth.

I think that the main question here is about the connection between the students and their assignments. Have the students chosen the topics of their works during the year? Is there a general theme for the whole class?

I believe that students will evaluate their progression much more if they have the opportunity to feel they can explore the world that interests them, and not a world that someone else has picked for them. I advice you to sit with each student in the first month of the year and help him select the theme/themes for all the assignments that will be included in the portfolio.

If you were a student in your class, wouldn't you want some more

Posted: Tue Mar 19, 2013 12:18 pm
by Sally Olsen
Do you keep papers around in your life in this day and age of computer storage?

I agree that if the information in the portfolio was useful in some other area of their life, it might prompt them to keep it longer.

They could contribute to Wikipedia.

They could contribute to a book. One of our profs put our final essays in a book and had it for her next classes to read and then built on that. We designed a curriculum for a class so it was really useful. You need to find something useful for your students to research and write on.

Other classes in other schools might want to exchange information.