Friday, July 3, 2015

Flight Map

Does your mind ever make strange connections that make you think, Where did that come from? It happened to me recently when I was in my seat, ready for takeoff.

I was reminiscing about my limited skiing experience. After getting started, I slid on the bunny slope for a bit, but since I couldn't stop, I kept going until I fell down or ran into something. The strange thought was I am so glad this pilot can fly better than I can ski. Bizarre, I know. I am sharing it with all of you because pilot proficiently get us from point A to point B over and over, and we can learn a lesson from what happens along the way.

We place ourselves in the experienced hands of the pilot and trust him or her completely to get us to our destination. If you are like me, you are happier when there is a map on the seatback in front of you that shows where you are in relation to the goal.

And there is the connection to what we do every day and why ongoing, formative assessment is so important. It provides our students with a glimpse of “Here is where we are going, where we are now, and where we will move next to get you closer to the end point.”

On the first day of school, our students place themselves in our care. They trust that we will get them from point A to point B before the school year ends. We can make their journey even more pleasant by frequently and transparently showing them right where they are, and clearly taking them where they need to go with instruction that matters.