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Final-Classroom Assessment and Data Literacy

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Other Age Levels Post-Secondary, Adults

The first piece of art is Woman Lifting a Basket, Waving a Handkerchief. I chose this piece because it represents selected response. Selected response can be a positive way to assess students. In fact, I use a lot of selected response questions in my classes. They use simple language, simple syntax, clear directions, and include clearly written questions. Just like the woman in the piece, selected response can be tricky. They can look similar, follow a pattern, but if they are too similar, or are not clearly defined, they can be tricky and can confuse students. Sometimes they do not give an accurate representation of a student's ability.

The second piece of art is America's Changing Colors by Leah Purcell. This piece represents the module on culturally responsive teaching. This piece shows, literally, the changing colors of America. Where we used to teach a mostly white represented, white centric curriculum, now we are learning to focus more on students of color. The four components of culturally responsive teaching include developing a knowledge base about cultural diversity, demonstrating care and building learning communities, communicating with ethnically diverse students, and responding to ethnic diversity. I believe that all four components are clearly implied in this piece.

The next piece that I have chosen for my collection is Requiem for Charleston by Lava Thomas. This piece embodies choice, as the choices the artist makes in this piece define it. She chose to use tambourines to signify gospel music, as the people that were killed in the Charleston church shooting were in an AME church and played gospel music. There are so many other profound choices that the artist made, including the fact that the names of the victims are inscribed in lambskin, signifying the innocence of these victims. I associated this piece of art with the module on assessment driven decision making. Assessments and the data that comes from them helps us as teachers to decide on our next steps. We decide whether to reassess, remediate, accelerate, or extend learning based on the data we get from assessments. There is a parallel between Lava Thomas's piece and the module only in that the decisions impact so many aspects. Unfortunately, Ms. Thomas's portrayal of such a tragedy can also represent the importance of decision making in art and for us, in teaching.

I chose the module Informal Assessments to go with the next, unbelievable, piece of art. The Throne of the Third Heaven of the Nations' Millennium General Assembly can be connected to informal assessment because the artist, James Hampton, is an untrained artist. He had absolutely no formal artistic training. Yet, he could create something this intricate and amazing. This is similar to informal assessment because although it is not a formal, written, assessment, it can be just as valuable as any other assessment. Informal assessments, such as questioning, conversations, homework, or any ungraded assignments, can give just as much information on where a student is and what assistance they need as data collected from a formal assessment. Just as Hampton created a masterpiece with no formal training, informal assessments can bring to light vital information.

The fifth piece of art is a piece that was created for the bicentennial. It is titled Preamble I related it to the module on teaching the whole student. This is because the license plates separately aren't anything special. But together, they form the preamble to the Constitution. Not only that, but they represent almost every state in the United States. This reminded me of the biopsychosocial framework. Biological, psychological, sociocultural, and life cycle forces all work together to form a person and who they are. If we do not teach to each part of the student, or if all of their needs are not met, then their education and their development will be affected. Just as this is the case, this piece of artwork would not be complete without all of the pieces that complete it.

The final piece that I have chosen is Woman Eating, a sculpture by Duane Hanson. I paired this with the module titled Validity, Reliability, and Bias. Hanson's sculptures are known for being incredibly realistic, so much so that people mistake his sculptures for actual people. This immediately reminded me of validity and reliability. The three types of validity are criterion related, construct related, and content related. There are also three types of reliability-stability, alternate form, and internal consistency. I know that this piece of art may be a stretch when it comes to this module, but when you actually see this piece of art, it is so realistic that you do a double take. It also addresses some bias, as the woman has two desserts, is slovenly, and is alone. This certainly also relates to bias. If in assessment, just as in art, we do not take into account reliability, validity, and bias, we cannot fully understand the student, the data, nor the artwork.

America's Changing Colors

National Portrait Gallery

Requiem for Charleston

Smithsonian American Art Museum


Smithsonian American Art Museum

Woman Eating

Smithsonian American Art Museum