Quick & Easy Formative Assessment Tools Ease 6-12 Educator Pressures

PETERBOROUGH, N.H., Feb. 18, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- Common Core State Standards (CCSS) have significantly ramped up the rigor required in the classroom. More than ever, critical thinking, reasoning, communication, and collaboration skills are being emphasized, which in turn requires that educators effectively address these increasing expectations.

Staff Development for Educators (SDE) is hoping to alleviate some of the pressure educators are feeling from the Common Core shifts by providing them extensive and thorough assessment tools and techniques through its new Formative Assessment & Common Core State Standards seminar, offered this spring.

In this seminar, nationally recognized education authority Katie McKnight will guide educators through quick and easy-to-use tools for developing a strong formative assessment plan that informs instruction across all content areas and prepares students for their state's new Common Core assessments —including PARCC and Smarter Balanced.

Teachers will explore numerous formative assessment strategies to help them discover the appropriate level of instruction for their students. They will be able to monitor student progress to support learning and confidently build the skills and content knowledge their students need to succeed on high-stakes assessments and in college and careers.

McKnight, an expert in assessment and the CCSS, has more than 20 years of teaching experience and is the author of nine books that offer strategies for engaging learners in reading and writing. She brings an energy and practicality to her seminars, with extensive knowledge of both PARCC and Smarter Balanced.

"The classroom-tested tools you'll gain during the seminar will help you engage and motivate your students, while building the skills and content knowledge necessary for college- and career-readiness, and, of course, CCSS success," states McKnight, confidently.

McKnight will help educators discover what the Common Core assessments mean to instruction across all content areas, and then assist with developing a formative assessment plan with a differentiated mindset for each classroom. She'll introduce best strategies for measuring student performance against the standards, and share tools to help teachers see and understand what their students know and how to develop critical thinking, reasoning, communication, and collaboration skills. 

In addition, McKnight will examine tactics for instilling in students a sense of self-regulation, learning ownership, and responsibility. Educators will return to the classroom armed with a toolkit of strategies that are immediately implementable.

The seminar is designed for new and veteran teachers alike.

"As a classroom teacher, I understand the concerns about the challenging CCSS assessments," explains McKnight. "This seminar will unpack the essential components of formative assessment and how to apply them to inform instruction, improve classroom practice, and strengthen student performance."

Staff Development for Educators is America's leading provider of professional development for PreK through Grade 12 educators. SDE believes that educators have the most important job in the world. That's Through Onsite PD, PD Events, Web-based PD, and PD Resources, the company empowers teachers and administrators across the country with ongoing professional development that is not only research-based, innovative, and rigorous, but also practical, motivating, and fun. All SDE training is presented by the nation's top authors and educational experts, with the goal of creating extraordinary classrooms that prepare students for the evolving demands of the 21st century.

All SDE events include a free resource book of handouts, lesson ideas, reproducibles, and more, and a free 60-day membership at TeachingMadeEasier.com. With the paid registration of a staff member, SDE extends free tuition to a principal from the same building, and also offers group discounts for groups of 10+ and 20+.

Formative Assessment & Common Core State Standards will be offered in Milwaukee, WI on May 1st, and Oak Lawn, IL on May 2nd. Educators interested registering for this seminar, or learning more about SDE's national conferences, upcoming SDE events, or other professional development opportunities, can visit www.SDE.com, call 1-800-462-1478, or email customersatisfaction@sde.com.

Read more news from Staff Development for Educators.

SOURCE Staff Development for Educators


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