Middle School Social Studies Question

Discussion in 'Middle School / Junior High' started by renmew, Jul 30, 2015.

  1. renmew

    renmew Rookie

    Joined:
    May 31, 2010
    Messages:
    52
    Likes Received:
    2

    Jul 30, 2015

    Hello! I am also new to middle school, and will be teaching 6-7-8th grade math and Social Studies. My question pertains to the Social Studies. I have spent the last few weeks planning and am questioning if the unit tests are really worth it. It's a private school, so this is something I can decide on my own. I have planned many hands-on projects (thanks to advice I read here), reading of primary sources, and uses of audio/video, but we do have a ton of material to cover. Since I am already doing the chapter tests, are unit tests necessary? Thanks everyone!
     
  2.  
  3. lucybelle

    lucybelle Connoisseur

    Joined:
    Jan 26, 2012
    Messages:
    1,841
    Likes Received:
    50

    Jul 30, 2015

    Maybe unit projects are a better idea? Investigative or inquiry based to get them thinking and using all the information they learned.
     
  4. MLB711

    MLB711 Comrade

    Joined:
    Jul 27, 2011
    Messages:
    376
    Likes Received:
    53

    Jul 30, 2015

    I do unit tests in lieu of chapter tests. If there's a lot of material in a chapter then I'll have a chapter "quest" which is typically worth 40-60 points. My quizzes are usually 15-30 points. I also teach at a private (Catholic) school and I feel like my parents would be questioning me if we didn't have unit tests.
     
  5. renmew

    renmew Rookie

    Joined:
    May 31, 2010
    Messages:
    52
    Likes Received:
    2

    Aug 1, 2015

    I'm just torn - we're doing projects along the way, although I haven't planned on a unit ending type project.

    This new job follows 10 years in a Catholic school teaching second grade. I used unit tests there as my make-up/extra credit opportunity. The test was optional, and students could use it to raise a lower chapter test score. Parents loved how that worked. I liked it, because it was still the kids' own work and it forced them to restudy all the info again, at home and on their own time.

    I'm stuck. I want parents to be happy, but not to the point where I'm giving up valuable time that could be used to learn more. I kind of am feeling that they've been tested enough on that material. I already plan on allowing open notes on the short section quizzes. A unit test would be the third time they've been tested on the material. Is that really necessary?

    I like the project ideas, but since we're doing them throughout the chapter, I think I've got that covered.
     
  6. ~mrs.m~

    ~mrs.m~ Comrade

    Joined:
    Jul 14, 2007
    Messages:
    356
    Likes Received:
    3

    Aug 1, 2015

    I don't think you have to have a unit test. I would say you need tests in the class, not just projects, so you have a balance of traditional and performance assessments. It seems to me that chapter tests would suffice. It all depends on the grading policy requirements. If there are not requirements addressing this, chapter tests seem fine to me.
     

Share This Page

Members Online Now

  1. Backroads,
  2. Kelster95,
  3. EriLynn
Total: 574 (members: 3, guests: 549, robots: 22)
test