Sunday, May 31, 2015

Sarah Sampson - Summative Assessment Project

Sarah Sampson - Summative Assessment Project - 9th grade Civics

Project Description:

Principles of Democracy Thinglink 

The Principles of Democracy Thinglink is a project that a colleague developed.  This colleague graciously let me barrow and use the project in my classroom.  I then took the project and augmented it for my classroom and students.  The assignment asked the students to explain principles of American Democracy as their summative project.  In my classroom the students could use either Haiku Deck or Thinglink for their project.  This was a way to differentiate for their project and also differentiate their technology skills.  Below are screenshots of the project.

This is the screen shot of turned-in projects from students in various classes.  They used a google form to complete their work.

An example of the finished project is below:

After getting familiar with Thinglink, I offered students the use  of Thinglink for other summative projects, such as the Political Party Project.

Students surprised me with asking to use other presentation methods rather than Thinglink. One student chose Prezi, see example below:


Depending on the focus of the unit each Thinklink project could or would use different Civic standards. Below are the Civic standards for the Principles of Democracy Thinklink project:

Strand: Citizenship and Government
Sub-Strand: Civic Values and the Principles of Democracy
Standard: Understand that - 3. The United States is based on democratic values and principles that include liberty, individual rights, justice, equality, the rule of law, limited government, common good, popular sovereignty, majority rule and minority rights.
Benchmark:  Define and provide examples of foundational ideas of American government which are embedded in founding era documents: natural rights philosophy, social contract, civic virtue, popular sovereignty, constitutionalism, representative democracy, political factions, federalism, and individual rights.
For example: Documents - The United States Constitution, the Bill of Rights, and selected Federalist Papers, among others.


I love the idea of Thinglink because it allows students to really go deeply into a subject.  The students need to make sure they develop several different links for each page or slide as they are explaining an item.  In this project they needed to explain the Principles of Democracy and the item maybe "rule of law".  If the student used "rule of law" they may use a picture of judicial scales along with the link that describes an independent judiciary.  Because the students can chose Haiku Deck or Thinglink the students then get to chose the level difficulty thus allowing the students to self select differentiation. Allowing students choice in summative projects creates a more accurate picture of the knowledge that the student has acquired on a subject.


This has been a very interesting project.  First, full disclosure, a colleague came up with the Thinglink assignment.  Because of this technology class I was not afraid to use this new technology. I did however invest time during the Assessment and Reflection Cohort to delve more deeply into Thinglink.   I can see using Thinglink for several summative assessments.  The only negative with Thinglink is making sure that the students use their own words and not "cut and paste" information from the internet.  One way to avoid cutting and pasting is to come up with a formula for the definition that the students have to use.  For example, each definition has to be four sentences long, in the student's own word yet has to contain certain vocabulary words in defining a phrase.  This will be an area that I will work on for next year.  

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