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Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Using Video to Assess "Explaining" in Math

Yesterday, I read a blog post by David Cox. He used a flipcam to videotape some of his students explaining a mathematical concept. As I watched the video a light went off in my head. One of the outcomes that is in the curriculum for my Math 10 C class is "Explain your strategy for factoring a trinomial". I could try to have the students write out an explanation but having them videotape their explanation would be even better.

So, today I took my Kodak zi8 into my class and had my students videotape each other as they explained how to factor a trinomial. What an awesome experience!!! I was able to watch every single one of my students factor a trinomial and explain it. I gained a lot of insight into the skills and the abilities of my students. Way more than just walking around the class and observing.

I just finished watching every single video and grading it using the following rubric.

This was such a success that I will definitely use it again. Video is a very powerful way to assess your students. I would suggest you give it a try. Once you do I do not think you will disagree with me.

Here is one of the videos of one of my students.