This strategy helps to build a manageable system allowing students to analyze their learning data regularly, set meaningful goals aligned with this analysis and meet one-on-one with their teacher regularly to review with the progress they are making in relation to their personal goals. It is applicable to every grade level, including kindergarten, and to any content area.
Repeat this cycle for every major assessment.
When learning in a distance format, setting goals and reviewing data can help motivate students to engage in self-paced work.
Provide students with relevant data to inform their goal-setting. Use a template, like the Learning Profile Planner below, to help students analyze their data.
Meet with students one-on-one, or in groups with other students who share similar data. Use a program like Zoom or Google Meet to see and hear each other in real time. Ask each student to set a goal during your meeting, using a goal-setting structure such as SMART goals. To learn more about goal setting structures, consult BetterLesson's Goal Setting and Reflection strategy below..
Review students' goals and compare them to your own analysis. Provide students with actionable feedback to inform their work plans.
To modify these steps for asynchronous distance learning, try using a shareable document (like a Google Doc) for students to record their goals and receive feedback. Or, use a video-based tool, like Flipgrid, for students to record their goals on video or with an audio recording.
During a live, synchronous small group or 1:1 student conference, have students reflect on their work so far, and share what has been challenging about working toward their goals.
Check in consistently with students during a live, synchronous session. Aim for at least once every two weeks, if not more frequently. If you are not able to connect with students via video conference, consider setting up a phone call or text message exchange with each of them to touch base on their goals once a week.
Data review and goal setting provide an accessible, structured way for students with disabilities to reflect and analyze their performances. Goal setting conferences support students with disabilities by providing a structured opportunity for them to receive more feedback on their reflection and remediation.
Effective data review requires teachers to prepare for the bevy of skills they require from students including executive functioning (task initiation, prioritization, working memory, etc.) skills, written expression skills, reading skills, and/or verbal skills. In order to support students with disabilities who have difficulty in these areas consider the following modifications:
Teachers should think carefully about the approach of quality over quantity when helping students with disabilities analyze their data. For the most targeted support, the focus should be on a deep analysis of performance on the highest leverage tasks of an assessment rather than remediating all skills. This may look like asking students to only do remedial practice on three out of six open response questions or asking students to only focus on practice for skills they received less than 50% mastery on.
Use visual aids, timers, and verbal reminders to help pace students and help with task initiation and task completion when they are analyzing their data.
Reviewing data and setting goals are important academic tasks for English learners to practice. This strategy guides learners in a process of assessment and improvement planning that will serve them throughout their academic endeavors.
English learners are required to listen to and respond to teachers and peers, read data, and write plans for mastering skills. In order to support English Learners consider the following modifications:
Start small. Do not try to do this for every assessment right away, or even every standard. Give yourself enough time between the assessments you will want your students to do this. This way, they will have time to work on their goals, you will have time to support this work with your one-on-one conferences and small group interventions, and you will able to celebrate progress!
Schedule yourself during their self-paced work time. For example, if this is going to last 45 minutes, it can look like this:
9:00-9:10: Help them get started
9:10-9:30: 20 min small group intervention on Simplification of Fractions
9:30-9:45: 3 one-on-one conferences with Jamal, Aliyiah and Noah
SECRET #1: Have them analyze their data within 48 hours of taking an assessment. Also, let students color skills green, yellow, or red with a crayon. OR even better, have them do it electronically and highlight them on Google Drive. It will help them visualize it better!
SECRET #2: The first time I had students analyze their data and set goals, I underestimated how long it would take students to complete this. So, the next time I did, I chunked it and had them first look at the power standards and then the standards they missed the most in.
To learn more, check out my blog post below!