Of the three types of performance assessments, presentational speaking & writing can be the easiest to create, but double-check that you are not missing these 3 crucial parts.
Step 1: CHOOSE A REAL LIFE SCENARIO
This is the part that gets students hooked! Pick a scenario that fits your students’ reality, or give them a few options. Maybe it’s volunteering, traveling abroad for a vacation, working a summer job, a camp or hanging out in the community. Avoid “you will be living with a family in Argentina…” type of scenarios unless this is really happening. Choose a real place that has target language speakers. Possible places: YMCA, a refugee center, your school, a local college, camps, etc. Set the audience as someone that speaks the target language. Include real names if applicable. Think about the age and role of the person too. Even better, see if you can connect it to a real event that happens.
The Kentucky Refugee Ministries has a New Beginnings program to help and mentor immigrant youth in their new city. Now they are looking for high school students to begin the mentoring program.
Step 2: SET THE EXPECTATIONS
Keep your favorite proficiency rubric nearby as you create so you are staying within their language abilities and allowing them to exceed expectations. Avoid rubrics that measure their performance by sentences/words limits, dictating what tenses to use and the number of language errors.
Step 3: LIST THE TASKS
Choice and voice! Let them choose if they want to speak or write if possible. Since this is presentational, let them create a real product that is at their proficiency level. A presentation for a group, a video to apply for a job, a webpage to share information, a letter to someone, a flyer or information sheet. Include a simple list of what to include that is open-ended.
You decide to apply for the mentoring opportunity. This is a great chance to help out, meet new people and add experiences to your college resume. To make good matches, the application asks for you to send a letter or video showing your ability to communicate in your second language.
You will want to include the following:
Your introduction including your favorite activities, family and your personality
Your top 4-5 recommendations for field trips explaining where, when, what to do, prices, meal options, etc.
Your opinions, other people’s opinions, personal experiences and stories (this is seeing if they can reach intermediate, and specifically use the past tenses)
A closing with information on how to contact you
Whew! Go back through the steps a few times to make sure the assessment is well-connected throughout. Enjoy seeing the students show what they can do!