We just finished up our trimester and as always the last two weeks consisted of lots of projects! Projects let me get an assessment while the kids are actually further cementing their learning. While they are creating their projects, I watch them discover for themselves what they do and don’t understand. They then have the opportunity and the necessity to go and find the information to that they need to fill in their own gaps.
For example, my 6th grader had a pretty good idea of what a coat of arms was. But when it came time to explain that to others as part of his Symbolism Country Study Project about Germany, he realized that he didn’t really know the purpose behind a coat of arms. A little bit of additional research not only improved his project, it also cemented his understanding of the importance of a coat of arms, and of symbols in general, into his own understanding. Here’s what his project looked like:
Additionally, my 3rd grader could easily recognize equivalent fractions but to explain it to someone else in a Math Tutorial Video was much more challenging. He had to take another look at the images he used and decide how to describe those pictures well enough so that someone else could understand. He wrote out his script using these phrases and in doing so cemented his own understanding of the concept. Here is his video:
Projects are great assessments of what students already know, but they are also a great opportunity to further understanding and comprehension of topics. What projects have your students done this year?