TES Maths Resource of the Week
What is it?
I'm more than happy to admit that I'm currently obsessed with low-stakes assessments. Why? Because you get all of the benefits of being able to check understanding, without adding unnecessary pressure either to your test-hating students or yourself in terms of additional marking.
So how do they work? At the end of a topic, you simply give pupils the test to complete in class. Then, allow them to mark it themselves and reflect on the areas that need a bit more practice. This collection contains 18 ten-minute tests, covering a range of number and algebra topics up to GCSE level.
How can it be used?
I see these being used in two, complementary ways. Firstly, it seems sensible to use them as soon as you've finished a topic. This will give you - and more importantly your students - an idea of what they know and what they don't. I would then issue the exact same test approximately three weeks later so that you can see how deep their level of understanding really is.
As soon as assessments like these become part of your regular routine, and students realise the usefulness of them, the stress and time-consuming costs of testing disappear, leaving only the benefits.
Craig is a secondary maths teacher in the North of England.
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