Sunday, October 25, 2009

Flip Me the Ball!!

On Friday October 23, 2009, after two weeks of planning and numerous meetings with Dr. Columna, it was time to teach a pre-assessment in PED 434: Statisitics and Assessment in Physical Education. For this lab we were to develop a pre-assessment for a softball unit being taught to eigth graders. Not having done something like this before, I wasn't sure what to expect...

In order to have a successful pre-assessment, one needs a proper assessment for which to follow and assess the students. For lab, we needed to focus on the cognitive and psychomotor domains of an assessment. Therefore, we had to develop a lesson plan, a checklist/rubric, a cognitive assessment, as well as a teacher's assessment. Myself and Jennifer 'The Doc' Thorpe brought our initial drafts to Dr. Columna for our first meeting for which he provided suggestions and alterations for feedback. As we kept making more meetings and adjusting what we had, we saw the quality of our work go up and thus had a better assessment. On that Friday, with our equipment and visual aides in hand, we were ready to see if this assessment would work.

We began the class with a simple tag game that mixed the pop fly and ground ball into it. If someone were tagged, the only way to be untagged would be to get a grounder or a pop up tossed to you. This proved successful and we moved to our next portion of the lesson. In order to quickly divide the class, we had 20 hats; 10 red and 10 white each with one of five different teams on the brim. For one part of the activity, we could split them in half easily and for the next make an easy transition into groups. This was great for transition and everyone got a nice hat to keep! For the groundball assessment, we had the students follow a zig zag pattern and a similar pattern was used for the fly ball assessment. This was the portion where were would do the teacher assessment using a spreadsheet. Following this activity, we had them in groups of three-four doing a peer assessment using a rubric we developed. Two would perform the skills while the other would assess one of both of them. We then moved to the cognitive assessment; a quiz based on what we had learned today. We then closed the activity and debriefed with Dr. Columna, the lab assistants, and our classmates.

This pre-assessment was difficult! It was nothing like we had expected. Our teacher assessment was very difficult because it was hard to not only provide feedback to the students but also assess all the components we were looking for. The activity we used was a fast moving one and that made it hard to assess. Our rubric for the peer assessment was a little difficult for everyone to understand and the peer assessment was a disaster in itself with everyone not knowing who was supposed to do what. Other than the assessments, I myself had some problems to work on. At times I spoke too fast which could have made the directions unclear. And also I didn't look as if I was enjoying myself nor was I enthusiastic about the lesson. On the brightside, my hook was a hit and the hats were a great idea for transitions and made the class fun!

Being that this was the first time I used an assessment, there were naturally going to be problems. But it could have been a lot worse. Many of the problems are small fixable ones. In the future, the whole lesson can be fixed by wearing a smile!

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