First and foremost, I think my chosen assessments are effective because they work together to build student knowledge about the central issue we are discussing. A number of my formative assessments relate to stereotypes because I think students can relate on a personal level and are, therefore, encouraged to participate, share their own voices and experiences, as well as listen to others. Also, a few of my formative assessments ask students to create stereotypes (Anatomy of a Greaser ThingLink) which might inspire some reflective thought on how easy it is to judge others. By contrasting the ThingLink assignment with a creative memoir writing activity, students get to move from judger to judged, which I hope will also inspire some reflective and relatable moments that students can contribute to the documentary interviews.
Additionally, I have faith that students can competently and confidently complete each assignment because the format for each is something they have done before. ThingLinks, memoirs, Padlet discussions, video presentations are all assignments that if they have a background in, taking the pressure off the project itself and placing it on the issue. Finally, since I work with middle schoolers, I know that I need to create a hub (Tackk webpage) for all of the assignments that students can go back to every day for information and reassurance, making assignments and expectations public.
As far as including student input in evaluation, I have not had much success with that in the past. Mostly, students think a grading scale should be yes (100) or no (I proposed 0; they proposed “redo”). I am open to new ideas on the matter and am interested to see others’ projects and how they are incorporating it.