The PYP Self-study – A spark!

Reviewing the evidence and Drawing conclusions

Teams were continually collecting evidence and reviewing data from the surveys to inform their search. Evidence was also gathered by grade level teams based on interest to ensure a comprehensive view of the program. For example, the grade 4 team of teachers would collect evidence at their grade level based on mutually agreed on standards.

Evidence took many forms, and the task at hand now was how to compile this evidence into an accessible and uniform format. Earlier when researching best practices involving student portfolios, I had come across peer-Review’s Portraits of Learning: Comprehensive Assessment through E-Portfolios in the Metro Academies Project by Savita Malik, Alycia Shada, Ruth Cox, Maggie Beers and Mary Beth Love. Ideally, the self-study process is a self-assessment, and building portfolios is one of the more progressive assessment methods proposed by the IB. I resolved to compile a portfolio as an end product – a portrait of learning.

I used Google slides to build the portfolios of evidence and justifications as compiled by the teams. With Google slides, the portfolios were shareable and living documents that could be shared with the school community. The review process involved every staff member – in groups, we reviewed the portfolios and taking into account the evidence presented and after discussion, assigned a rating that each group deemed fit. The average rating of each standard was adopted out of seven groups. Respective self-study teams reviewed contentious ratings.

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