Sunday, March 4, 2012

Keeping Students Accountable

Standardized testing--any thoughts on them?? Just kidding! We don't have enough time for that!! ;)

Standardized tests are such a BIG deal in Texas. I'm sure those of you in other states feel pressure about your testing system too. We are required to have students take practice tests--benchmarks--to assess progress every 6 weeks for all three tested subject areas. As fun as these are (NOT), the kids get worn out and oftentimes will deem them useless. I believe that well-written benchmarks can be useful. Whether or not the ones I have to give my students are, in fact, useful, I want them to feel like they are so they will always do their best on them. I don't want to pass on any negative feelings that I may have about them. I always make sure to let students know how they did on these tests. We sometimes reflect upon their progress in an informal manner and make goals for the next benchmark. I have also had them keep track of progress on a graph before. But we don't do that every time (for a number of reasons). Anyway, I decided that I needed to enhance the page that I currently use in order to better keep them accountable. I created this little minibook for them to track their progress. Check out the book below and feel free to download it! I am not sure how many of you can actually use this, but I hope there are some of you out there that can!

I have not used this version with my students, but I know that they will enjoy it, since they enjoyed my previous history form. Enjoy!


  1. Replies
    1. This is great! Thank you so much for sharing. I think standards and standardized testing it BIG in any state (just MUCH bigger in TX-- aren't most things?). Thanks so much for sharing a great, useful, student friendly idea!


  2. This is a great idea - thanks for sharing. And good luck on the Writing STAAR. Ew. I've taught fourth grade for eight years; this is my first in third. We're looping up with the kids next year, so we have a extra year to prepare them. I'm kind of sick about it!
    Buzzing with Ms. B

  3. very cool! i used to use just a boring ol spreadsheet..but i lik this :)

    ♥ Jen
    The Teachers' Cauldron

  4. I am so thankful I don't have to worry about benchmarks, but I'm sure this would be super useful if I did! I just gave you an award!

    Jennifer @ Herding Kats In Kindergarten

  5. What a fab idea! I need to figure out something similar/simpler to use with my kinders.

    ✪ Miss W

    Miss W Teaches

  6. This is great! I try to be sure to share with my kids their results, but don't always have time/remember. This will help to make this valuable learning tool a priority. Thank you for sharing.

  7. We take 5 Reading unit tests ( there are 6 units, but the last unit test falls at the end of the year when we take CRTs). This will be great for tracking their progress!

  8. Awesome idea! Thank you so much for sharing with us! I'm always looking for ways to make students accountable for their learning and growth! A definite must for next year! (Our benchmarks are done for this year...It's on to STAAR)

    Confessions of a Fourth Grade Teacher

  9. I love this idea so much! But, I need your help. When I download it from googledocs, the type turns into black rectangles. It looks like a top secret letter after the CIA gets a hold of it. Am I doing something wrong?
    Thank you again for this great resource!
    5th grade teacher

    1. Try visiting my friend Ashleigh's blog to fix it:

      Let me know if you still need help! :)

    2. That worked beautifully. Thanks for the tip!

  10. I like this! Thank you for sharing this great tool!
    Learning In Wonderland