Shawna Densmore, Amy Flemister, and Sandra Powell

Using different assessment methods to measure and improve students’ understanding of mathematics was the subject of a recent workshop presented by three University of Arkansas at Monticello education students.

Amy Flemister and Shawna Densmore, both senior middle level education majors from Wilmar, and Sandra Powell, a senior middle level education major from Warren, presented the workshop to the Middle Level Education Pre-Service Conference hosted by the University of Central Arkansas in Conway.

The workshop was used to discuss a variety of assessment strategies which can provide feedback to adjust course content and rigor, teaching techniques, and learning strategies to improve student achievement.

Under the direction of Pam Beard, instructor of education and STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) director, and Terri Smith, science specialist, the interns developed a research-based presentation of best practices for formative assessment in math. The presentation included the use of video technology using both slide shows and video clips.

“I believe our students were able to inspire, motivate, entertain and challenge their audience,” said Smith. “The interns used a wide variety of strategies to demonstrate the eight mathematical practices in formative assessment and demonstrated the vision of what the newly adopted common core state standards should look like in a student centered classroom. The participants walked away with new strategies they had not been exposed to before.”