Bump It Up! Walls that teach!

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I love it when teachers take an idea and ADOPT and ADAPT.  This is an excellent example from Sarah M.  There has been lots of discussion at her school focused on formative assessment.  She heard of a Bump It Up wall and the thinking behind the idea.  Sarah was working on introducing independent reading so she set out to adopt the idea and adapt it to meet the learning needs of her students.

Sarah and her class talked about the behaviours she would expect to see during independent reading.  They teased this out into a rubric.  5/6M chose Outstanding, Wow, So-so and Oops as the headings for the four levels.  I particularly like the points ‘No pretend reading’ and ‘You talked back to the book more than once”.  The students engaged in an intense discussion and were very proud of their rubric.  More importantly – they knew and understood it – they had ownership.

At the end of each independent reading session Sarah checks in with a number of students asking for their self-assessment.  Based on her observations she is able to provide immediate feedback.  The students are amazingly honest and reflective.  Assessment as Learning.

The bump it up wall has spread into many other classrooms.  One 5/6 group chose ‘Don’t go there!’ as the heading for their lowest rank.  Dr Ash has used pictures to illustrate the points for his 1/2. The students report on their own reading and happily refer to the wall charts.

What is exceptional about all these new teachers is their enthusiasm and willingness to give ideas a go.  They hear an idea and adapt it to suit their own way of working with students.  The gossip in the staffroom is that kids are regularly cheering when it is time for reading.  Remarkable! Inspirational!