Sergej Visser

20 yrs EFL teacher, trainer/advisor

Session

feedback-rich lesson ideas for language teachers

Formative assessment in language education:
ideas for feedback-rich lesson plans

Language teachers are successful when their pupils learn to use the language well. This seems obvious, but language education often focuses primarily on vocab and grammar – and on the test. However, the proof of the pudding is in the eating: when pupils show their language aptitude in the receptive and productive language skills, especially the latter.

In The Netherlands, three domains are recognized in language education: language acquisition (vocab & grammar), language skills (LSRW), and literature. Formative assessment can be used to improve learning results within any of these domains. This works when lessons and tasks are used that generate feedback. A pupil performs a task, gets feedback, and processes this feedback in the next, revised version of the task. This closed feedback loop optimally propels student learning.

In this workshop, you will get to know various forms of feedback-rich didactics. You will be presented with practical lesson ideas and tasks – all tested and tried – for each of the domains and language skills. With these approaches and tips, you can put formative assessment to practice – in your next language lesson, if you wish to.

Bio

Sergej Visser was an EFL teacher at a Dutch secondary school, Griftland College in Soest, for 20 years. With two colleagues, he developed the complete English curriculum for the senior years. It’s a set of activity-based, open-end, 8-week projects, in which students work on challenging and inspiring tasks, both individually and in groups.

This year, Sergej has started working as a senior trainer/advisor for a Dutch testing and examination company, Bureau ICE, as as formative assessment specialist.

Apart from that, he is a songwriter and a performing artist.

Sergej lives in Hilversum, The Netherlands, with his wife and six children.

Archive

Formative Assessment in a Culture of Feedback

Formative assessment can work wonders. However, its success depends in part on the quality of feedback in the process. Of course, you’ve heard about feedback, feed up and feed forward. You may have learnt to give feedback on product, progress, and process. And yet, results may still be slightly disappointing.

The key to better formative assessment, and thus to better learning? Start working on a culture of feedback. Ask for comments regularly. Always look for opportunities to improve your own performance. Show your students how to learn from criticism: teach them how to ask better questions, how to give feedback, and how to receive it. Demonstrate that making mistakes does not equal failure, but propels development. And practice what you preach: ask for students’ feedback, and give them feedback when they ask you to.

We will explore the role of feedback in an effective lesson series, study the most effective ways of giving and gathering feedback, and discuss how building a culture of feedback can optimize the learning process. This way, we will discover how truly effective formative assessment works. Find out how to create a culture of feedback, and turn your lessons into inspiring, inclusive learning opportunities for all!

Formative assessment: adapting classroom practices
How can students gain knowledge, develop powerful skills and train effective habits in class? How can lessons be challenging and productive? How can teachers give individual formative feedback to students? And how can students become sources of feedback for teachers? Our answer: educational adventures. In this workshop, you will experience first-hand what it is like to participate in this kind of activity.

Formative assessment: adapting classroom practices
How can students gain knowledge, develop powerful skills and train effective habits in class? How can lessons be challenging and productive? How can teachers give individual formative feedback to students? And how can students become sources of feedback for teachers? Our answer: educational adventures. In this workshop, you will experience first-hand what it is like to participate in this kind of activity.