itc publications’ believes the answer is for teachers to scaffold the assessment clearly so that the student knows exactly what the task is and how to tackle it. This enables the student to create a strong first draft and for the teacher to give targeted and technical feedback straight away.
To enable a student to achieve great work from the get-go, itc publications recommends the following process, known as our “Thinking Skills – Four Steps to Success” model.
1. Identify the Task Verb
The students must be able to easily identify the task verb(s) on the assessment sheet, such as ‘compare’, ‘discuss’ or ‘justify’.
2. Understand the Task Verb
Ensure you explain to students the exact definition of the task verb(s). For example, if the task verb is ‘compare’, this means students must look at the way two things are both similar and different.
3. Use an Appropriate Thinking Tool
Offer students an appropriate thinking tool so that students can organise their research data and thoughts. This will ensure they are on track!
4. Use the Appropriate Language
For ‘compare’, you would expect students to use the following type of language:
• There are many ways in which…and…are similar
• An obvious difference between… and...is
Use this poster in conjuction with our Thinking Skills poster
Here’s why you’ll also love our four-step model:
- Benefits learners at every stage
- Boosts student confidence with thinking skills, literacy and research
- Forms a strong pedagogical structure for your whole school
- Streamlines higher-order thinking
- Helps make teaching easier and more explicit
- Guides students to embrace higher-order thinking as a natural approach to every assessment or classroom task.
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