In an ideal station world, all of the stations and their activities lead to one big goal. So this means I need to carefully choose activities that are challenging, relevant to their lives, and at their proficiency level (try not to take them back to Novice low!). No problem, right?!
I personally do not want to grade a sheet from each student and each station. Also that completion check does not show what they know either. However, I need to hold them accountable for learning. Here are the steps I’ve taken to get where I am today.
ONE PAPER PER GROUP
First time I did stations I gave each group one paper. They answered the questions from the instruction sheet at each station on this form. This was pretty easy to grade (or should I say give a completion check), but the students did not love it. Also I observed only one person in the group was filling out the paper.
Now I started thinking how everyone could be accountable. So I had an assessment at the end of class that used the new things they learned in stations. This was better. I could see evidence of their learning and students were more engaged. Example: The big goal is “I can introduce myself.” Each station has an activity to learn, and then practice, parts of this (a greetings video, article with celebrity birthdays, tweets about ages, Bucket ‘o questions, matching game with questions and their answers, put a blog post about self). Now they all lead to an assessment that is easily measurable. But so many papers to grade…
Then I thought that it may be too soon to always give an assessment for them to demonstrate their learning. Ah ha! I included a group project. At each station they still learn and practice something new. Then they add that to their project. This worked well when I made the project to create your own restaurant. One station they read a menu, then created one for their restaurant. Then they read a restaurant review before making their own. They watched some commercials, then they created one. They read coupons, they made some. They watched a video to pick up some Q/As needed at a restaurant. Then they “ran” their restaurant in class. This was so much more fun! And of course they reviewed each group’s restaurant in the end. Four Stars!!