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ANet is a nonprofit dedicated to the premise that every child in America deserves an excellent education and the opportunities it provides. We pursue our vision of educational equality in America by helping schools boost student learning with great teaching that is grounded in standards, informed by data, and built on the successful practices of educators around the country.

Assessment previews: Mapping the way to mastery

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As a mission-driven nonprofit organization, our primary concern is helping ensure equitable opportunity for all students.

Working alongside schools, we’ve learned that great teaching is grounded in standards, data, and insights shared among educators. We believe a blog can help us make a difference by spreading the ideas and effective practices of educators we work with.

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Assessment previews: Mapping the way to mastery

Becky Frutos

Would you ever go on a long journey without a map (or, better yet, a smartphone)? 

Teaching is like a journey, with the end goal each year being mastery of the grade-level standards. It’s easy to get off track, so teachers need tools to help guide students along the right path. Without them, planning each lesson can feel like trying to navigate by the stars.

Assessment previews are like a map that shows teachers where students need to be and what is expected of them. They can be used to backwards plan—to chart the best route to move students towards mastery. 

Wait—isn’t that teaching to the test?

We’re not talking about using identical items with students and teaching them to get the right answer. Rather, teachers study the assessments and do the problems themselves so they have a clear understanding of what mastering grade-level standards looks like. 

Watch the video below to hear two instructional leaders from Mary Walsh Elementary in Springfield, Massachusetts and George Washington Carver STEM Elementary in Cleveland, Ohio describe why they value assessment previews. 

If assessment previews alone are the map, assessment previews combined with ANet tools and resources are the smartphone.


Reclaim assessment as a tool for instruction

Check out our new white paper on refining system-level assessment strategy!

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