Teacher resources and professional development across the curriculum

Teacher professional development and classroom resources across the curriculum

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Teaching Foreign Languages K–12

A Library of Classroom Practices

Analyze the Video

As you reflect on these questions, write down your responses or discuss them as a group.

Before You Watch
Use the following questions to discuss or reflect on your current assessment practices.
  • How do you presently assess students' skills in these areas: interpersonal communication, interpretive communication, presentational communication, and cultural knowledge?
  • What guidelines does your school or district provide for assessing students in foreign languages?
  • How do you design assessments so that you are testing what you've taught?
Watch the Video
Watch this video in its entirety, or pause for discussion or reflection after each case study. Take notes on each teacher's assessment strategies, particularly how she provides students with feedback and what her assessments reveal about student performance.

Reflect on the Video
Review your notes, and then respond to the following questions:
  • What kinds of information do these case studies give regarding student performance? Regarding instructional strategies?
  • How would you describe the role of rubrics and feedback in the featured assessment strategies?
  • In the first and second case studies, what is the impact of assessing over a period of several days or weeks rather than over a single class period?
Look Closer
If time allows, take a closer look at the individual case studies. Use the video images below to locate where to begin viewing.

Case Study: Integrated Performance Assessment

You'll find this segment approximately 5 minutes and 30 seconds after the video starts. Watch for about 22 minutes.

Respond to the following questions:
  • How does the initial interpretive communication task lead students beyond basic comprehension?
  • Following their interpretation of the music video, what kinds of feedback do students receive and what are their reactions?
  • How is the student-to-student interpersonal communication task enriched by the preceding interpretive communication task?
  • During their discussion, what evidence is there that the students are using language in new ways? That they are negotiating meaning?
  • How does the presentational communication task that students do next draw on the two previous tasks?
  • How are rubrics used in the various phases of the IPA?

Case Study: Spanish and French Performance Assessments

You'll find this segment approximately 28 minutes after the video starts. Watch for about 15 minutes and 30 seconds.

Respond to the following questions:
  • While all three communicative modes are visible in this strategy, the main focus is on a presentational task, both written and oral. How does the children's story project illustrate key characteristics of presentational communication?
  • How do the teachers' rubrics address individual student strengths?
  • What evidence do you see that students are engaged in this assessment?
  • How do the teachers work together on this unified assessment? What are the advantages of this kind of collaborative effort?

Case Study: Backward Design

You'll find this segment approximately 46 minutes after the video starts. Watch for about 7 minutes and 30 seconds.

Respond to the following questions:
  • How does Ms. Granville use backward design to create authentic classroom assessments?
  • How does Ms. Granville assess interpretive communication?
  • How does Ms. Granville assess interpersonal communication?
  • How does Ms. Granville use feedback to both inform students about their performance and shape her future instruction?
  • How do Ms. Granville's classroom assessment techniques illustrate the adage "test the way you teach"?

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