Pre-Assessment Options and Other Informal Response Techniques

Technique
Description
Choral Response
Students give a choral response to a whole class question.
Clothesline
Students move to place on a human line that most closely matches their level of understanding. The line is a continuum, with the beginning of the line indicating no understanding of a concept and the opposite end of the line indicating a high level of understanding.
Fist of Five
Students respond to a whole class question by showing the number of fingers that corresponds to their level of understanding (one being the lowest, five being the highest)
Four Corners
Students move to the corner of the room that most closely matches their level of understanding. Previously, the teacher must label each corner of the room with a word or phrase that describes the learner’s level of understanding. (meets expectations, approaching expectations, partially meets expectations, does not meet expectations)
Individual Response Boards
Students will use wipe boards or think pads to respond to a question posed by the teacher. The teachers hold up their answers for the teacher to check or the teacher circulates the class to check individual responses.
Signal Cards
Students use a card to indicate their level of understanding of a concept. Cards may be labeled as followed:
  • Red, Yellow, Green
  • Yes/No
  • True/False
  • Negative/Positive
  • Stop, I’m Lost/ Slow Down, I’m Getting Confused/ Full Steam Ahead
  • Happy Face/ Straight Face/ Sad Face
Speedometer
Students think of a speedometer going from 0 to 100 miles per hour. They then lay one arm on top of the other with hands touching elbows. Students should raise the top arm, stopping at a point between 0 to 100 mph to indicate their level of understanding, with 100 mph designating complete understanding.
Thumbs Up
Student responds to a whole class question by putting thumbs up if they fully understand a concept, thumbs down if they do not understand, and thumbs to the side to indicate some areas of understanding or confusion.
Entrance Card/Warm-up
Prior to a lesson, students respond in writing to question or set of questions posed by the teacher.
Exit Card
Students respond in writing to a prompt or question posed by the teacher at the conclusion of a lesson.
Journal/Free Write
Students write what they know about a given topic. The writing may be timed.
Matching
Matching vocabulary terms to the definition.
Most Difficult First
Students are given the option of completing the most difficult questions or problems first to determine if additional practice is needed.
Observation
Students complete a task as the teacher observes, takes notes, or records progress using a checklist.
Pre or Post Test
Students complete an assessment to demonstrate background knowledge on a topic.