The other day I opened a free account through ClassMarker. It is a “professional on line testing service” and designed for, “business and training, education, recruitment, distance learning and online courses, and self study” (ClassMarker, 2009). This amazing pedagogy tool is easy to set up, create and implement in any of the Essential Learning Areas. On this website I can create a pacific area for my year one class, with individual sections for each learner. This allows my learners to undertake their own quizzes and track their own progress. It also allows me, as a Learning Manager to track each of my learners’ comprehension and understanding in each area of use.
Above is a link to a multiple choice quiz that I created for my grade one class. This is a comprehension quiz that the learners will do after reading a Springboard book called, “At the Zoo” (Goldsmith, n/d). As they are still beginner readers they will need help with reading the questions and answers. I am yet to investigate this, but it would be good if I can create Avatars for each question. This would create more independency in the learners as they would be able to access their quizzes at any time to check their own comprehension. It would also reduce the one-on-one time consuming activities that would be beneficial in another area and to make this task realistic in the younger grades. This can be implemented in rotational group activities, whole class activities or with home readers. If the classroom is limited to none or one computer, I as the Learning Manager would use this pedagogy tool in group rotations. This would allow me to hear and support each learner during reading and through the comprehension task (unless the avatars could be used instead), the group would work collaboratively to source the answers. At home the learners can also under take these reading comprehension quizzes as they can accessed via a link in the class’s blackboard site or the learning place, with their parents help. This is just one example of how ClassMarker can be implemented in the classroom.
ClassMarker I believe can be a very useful formative assessment tool for learners of all ages, but might work better with the older grades. They are more independent and can use this tool in alignment with the Connectivism theory as it suggests that learners “select and pursue their own learning” (Siemans, 2004, p.2). The learners can assess this tool at their own leisure and as many times as they want to continually check their understandings. This tool has the potential to help learners identify what they know and what they need to know, enabling them to focus and strengthen their weaknesses.
With every new technology comes great responsibility on the implementer, as this technology tool needs to be explicitly scaffolded before seeing success. I cannot wait until I use this in my classroom for optimal success.
Until my next learning experience
ClassMarker. (2009) About. Accessed August 8, 2009, from http://www.classmarker.com/aboutus.php
Goldsmith, R. (n/d). At the Zoo. Retrieved from MacMillians Springboard Notes: http://www.macmillan.com.au/primary/newsite/articleIDs/2F39F389AFCF729ACA25740A0016D6FA?open&template=domPrimary
Siemens, G. (2004). Connectivism: A Learning Theory for the Digital Age. Retrieved July 15, 2009, from: http://www.elearnspace.org/Articles/connectivism.htm