Inquiry Question: Does self-assessment improve students’ achievement in writing about music?
This unit was developed after the Fall 2013 performance assessment revealed gaps in written reflection and tempo. In this course, students were exposed to ways of listening to and describing pieces of music in writing using appropriate terminology. These descriptions include:
- a topic sentence about the mood of the piece
- a personal connection to the music
- at least three pieces of supporting evidence for the mood by accurately referencing the tempo, dynamics, instrumentation, and/or other musical elements (e.g., form/design, articulation, melody/ harmony, rhythm, style/genre)
Students participated in formative assessments (teacher description feedback, student-to-student peer feedback, student self-reflection and assessment) and summative writing assessments in an effort to attain a well rounded mix of self-reflection and peer/teacher evaluation.
In the following video, the Music facilitator describes her year-long inquiry into writing about musical mood:
The classroom teacher explains how students should use a rubric to assess their own work:
Use of Technology
During the lesson, students used iPads, the classroom SmartBoard and Google forms. iPad were used as a means of documenting student work and sometimes in the place of paper/pencil.