Common Formative Assessments: How to Connect Standards-Based Instruction and Assessment

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SAGE Publications, Apr 20, 2006 - Education - 164 pages
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′A powerful resource. The authors clarify the terminology of assessment with painstaking precision and offer specific, practical steps to help educators develop their assessment literacy′ - Richard DuFour, Educational Author and Consultant

′Highly recommended-a clear and helpful guide to navigating the terrain of instruction, assessment, and standards′ - Mike Schmoker, Author, Speaker, and Consultant

′A powerful way of coping with accountability. This important book lays out a game plan for coming up with an educationally defensible response to today′s score-boosting pressures′ - W. James Popham, Professor Emeritus, UCLA Graduate School of Education and Information Studies

′In this era of high-stakes testing, this book conveys the power of formative assessments as a means of improving student achievement-by providing educators specific and timely information they can use to plan instruction′ - Nancy Stark, Education Manager of School Improvement and Literacy, Connecticut State Department of Education

Now you have powerful means to closely align curriculum, instruction, and assessment to the standards essential for student success. You will learn how teams of teachers in the same content area or grade level can collaboratively develop, test, and refine common formative assessments in order to gain reliable and timely feedback on student progress. The results provide teachers with critical insight into how well students are understanding the standards, what changes are needed in instructional strategies, and how to best meet the needs of every student!

This timely resource presents the "big picture" of an integrated standards-based instruction and assessment system, and offers instructional leaders and teacher teams guidelines for

o Developing high-quality common formative assessments

o Aligning school-based common formative assessments with district benchmarks and large-scale summative assessments

o Predicting likely student performance on subsequent assessments in time to make instructional modifications

o Implementing and sustaining common formative assessments within the school′s or district′s assessment culture

This book is a must-read for all educators and leaders committed to improving standards-based assessment practices in their district, school, or classroom.

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About the author (2006)

Larry Ainsworth is the author or coauthor of numerous published books, including: Common Formative Assessments 2.0 (2015), “Unwrapping” the Common Core (2014), Prioritizing the Common Core (2013), Rigorous Curriculum Design (2010), Common Formative Assessments (2006), “Unwrapping” the Standards (2003), Power Standards (2003), Five Easy Steps to a Balanced Math Program (2000 and 2006), Student Generated Rubrics (1998), and Getting Started with Rigorous Curriculum Design: How School Districts Are Successfully Redesigning Their Curricula for the Common Core (2013). His Corwin workshop, “Learning Intentions and Success Criteria” (2016), is a step-by-step process PreK-12 educators use to bring clarity to student learning targets.

Currently an independent education author and consultant, Larry served as the Executive Director of Professional Development at The Leadership and Learning Center in Englewood, Colorado, from 1999 to 2013. He traveled nationally and internationally to assist school systems in implementing best practices related to standards, assessment, curriculum, and instruction across all grades and content areas. Throughout his career as a professional developer, Larry has delivered keynote addresses and breakout sessions across North America and in Latin America and regularly worked onsite in school systems to assist leaders and educators in understanding and implementing powerful standards-based practices, including prioritizing and “unwrapping” state standards and Common Core standards, developing common formative assessments, designing authentic performance tasks, and creating rigorous curricular units of study in all content areas, PreK through grade 12.

Drawing upon 24 years of experience as an upper elementary and middle school classroom teacher in demographically diverse schools, Larry brings a varied background and wide range of professional experiences to each of his presentations. His primary goal is to help all educators and leaders positively impact student learning using proven practices with standards, assessment, curriculum, and instruction.

Visit Larry’s website at to learn how “Timeless Practices Work Together” to improve student learning.

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