Question: The Quizzes in Investigations 3 are new to us. We are used to assessing the benchmarks with the Meeting/Partially Meeting/Not Meeting system outlined in the Assessment Teacher Notes. Can you help us get a better sense of how to use the Quizzes as they relate to the Unit’s benchmarks?
Answer: Quizzes are included in grades 1-5 of Investigations 3, to give students experience with next-generation test formats, such as:
- multiple choice
- questions with more than one right answer
- questions that ask which answers are not correct
- matching questions
- questions that ask students to identify the correct answer by drawing a [circle] around it)
Given that some of these problem formats will likely be new/unfamiliar to students, teachers tell us a short discussion about the problem type is a worthwhile use of time.
Quizzes are also an additional way to monitor students’ progress. Appearing approximately every 8–10 sessions, Quizzes help teachers gather information to be “used in conjunction with the other written assessments, portfolio opportunities, and student observations to formulate a comprehensive view of students’ progress toward the Benchmarks.” (Implementing Investigations at Grade , p. 49)
Most Quiz questions assess unit benchmarks that are also assessed in other ways (e.g. by an Assessment Checklist and/or an embedded assessment). For example, all 5 questions on Quiz 1 in 3U4 are about perimeter (Benchmark 1), and there is also an Assessment Checklist for that benchmark. Together, both assessments provide information about a student’s progress towards understanding perimeter. There are limited instances where a unit Benchmark is only assessed via a Quiz. This is because Quizzes offer an efficient way to assess narrower/skill-based ideas like telling time and rounding numbers.
When analyzing completed Quizzes, it may be tempting to give a percent grade based on the number of correct responses. However, quizzes are intentionally short and are not necessarily all focused on the same Benchmark. For example, Quiz 1 in 2U5 provides additional information about three of the unit’s benchmarks. Therefore, 75% would not aptly describe a student’s progress towards a particular Benchmark.
Rather, teachers must use their judgement to balance their knowledge of the student with the information gathered via a Quiz, the daily “Observing Students at Work” sections, their written work, the Assessment Checklists, and the embedded assessments. We encourage teachers to look at both incorrect and correct responses, and think about how that information matches up with other forms of data they have collected about students’ progress towards the Benchmark. Teachers who regularly use the Meets/Partially Meets/Does Not Meet the Benchmark criteria should be able to use the evidence they have collected to select one of these criteria when considering a student’s progress. Conversations about how to do this might make a productive grade level/band/school discussion.
We are excited to have a space that offers us the opportunity to answer common questions from the field. Have questions you’d like to see answered? Email us.