Last week we began working on a classroom based assessment (CBA) that the state uses to assess students in areas like music, PE, art etc. For social studies, it involves students choosing a topic around a general theme, completing some research and and writing a short essay in which they analyze the topic. In SVSD, the 7th grade does the “Causes of Conflict” CBA. For more information about this from the state department of education, click here. I gave students a packet last week describing the assignment (see embedded documents below), and they have been diligently (well, most of them anyway) reading about their topic and taking notes. Yesterday they began working on a graphic organizer to help them plan the essay and today they began writing a rough draft. We have also looked at some sample essays to help understand good and bad traits. If you’d like to see some examples of these essays, click here. The students will receive a score out of 4. Scores of 3 and 4 meet standard, while 2 and 1 are not meeting standard. If you’d like to check out the scoring guide click here. I will then convert the score to a letter grade and include that in the “practice” category of my two category grading system where performance is 70% and practice is 30%. If you have any questions or comments about the CBA, feel free to use the comment feature at the end of this post or if you are reading it on your email click here.