Classroom Environment Lesson Structure Assessment Sample Comprehension Lessons

After the lesson, we have the opportunity to examine the students’ completed work, from both guided and independent practice. The goals of the lesson form the basis of our analysis, along with ongoing goals such as expressing thinking through writing or drawing. It is important to remember that we don’t usually ask children to create a final product in independent practice. Our focus is on their thinking. Therefore we don’t assess their work for spelling, grammar and punctuation, although we certainly might use information we gain for future lessons in these areas. Having conferred with most of the children as they were working, we also have a great deal of anecdotal information about their products. We know how much teacher support we provided, what the child was able to verbalize but not record, and parts of the process of how they reached their thinking.

We can examine student work from several perspectives, depending on our purpose:

Examining Student Work By…
Guides Our Teaching In…
individual needs conferences, ongoing follow-up
individual strengths conferences, examples for future lessons
groups with similar needs or strengths small group lessons
overall class needs or strengths follow-up class lessons

In each sample lesson, we provide several samples of student work and guidelines for analyzing it. In some cases we list the criteria from the goals of the lesson and note strengths, needs, and possible next steps for each child. In other modules we have grouped together children’s work that exhibited similar characteristics. This approach often uncovers information we might have missed by only looking at the work individually. It also helps us organize flexible small groups for follow-up.

In the Teacher Commentary video clips in each Analyzing Student Work segment of the sample lesson, we discuss observations about the student work immediately after the lesson took place.