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NOTE: The Smarter Balanced Digital Library was decommissioned. Please visit Tools for Teachers, the new home for instructional resources and professional learning.
Educators in Kona, HI Use Interim Assessments to Move Their Students Forward
Teachers at Konawaena Middle School strive for students to learn deeply. Smarter Balanced instructional resources help them do just that by providing methods of pinpointing knowledge and by offering new teaching strategies. From the Digital Library to interim assessments, these educators on the Big Island are working to increase student learning.
Konawaena Middle School
Location: Kealakekua, Hawaii
District: Hawai’i Department of Education
Mission: Create independent and inquisitive life-long learners
Interview Date: January 2019
“Our goal is to move our students forward and I would strongly encourage other students to go with the interim assessments.”Seurgis Palakiko, Vice Principal, Konawaena Middle School
Spotlight on Strategy
How are educators at Konawaena Middle School using Smarter Balanced formative assessment tools to really understand how to help their students?
- Interim assessments allow teachers to understand their students’ skill sets and what they need to work on, at all levels.
- Taking interims empowers students to engage with their own results, analyze their responses, and become motivated to do better.
- Reviewing interim results with students allows immediate feedback so that student understand why they did or didn’t do well.
- Interims are efficient and can be completed in a class period. Each one allows you to drill down into a specific area, providing a precise view of students’ knowledge.
- Leverage the Connections Playlists, which link interim results to instructional resources so each student, based on their level, get exactly the next step they need.
Interview Day: Behind the Scenes
- Seurgis Palakiko strongly encourages other schools considering using interim assessments to go for it.
- Jannica Breslin finds it helpful to see how students react to their own results because it often uncovers complex reasons why they did not answer a question correctly.
- Dawn Easton uses interim results to provide feedback to students right away.
- Jennifer Murphioka was familiar with the Digital Library but didn’t learn about the interims until she attended a workshop. Upon returning, she decided to give them a try and has found them valuable in tailoring her instruction.