Using continuous assessment and reading and writing activities to improve literacy

Using continuous assessment and reading and writing activities to improve literacy

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  • Last Updated August 2, 2018

Using continuous assessment and reading and writing activities to improve literacy

The Caribbean Primary Exit Assessment (CPEA) is an assessment of the core literacies required by all pupils exiting the primary school system. These literacies are deemed critical for pupils to optimise achievement at the next level of education.Unlike other exit assessment at this level in the Caribbean, a critical aspect of the CPEA methodology is a continuous assessment component that supports pupils’, active participation in the CPEA activities, involvement of parents in the learning process and a strong feedback system from teachers.The paper reports on the findings of a project conducted in four primary schools in a Caribbean territory. Teachers in participating schools utilised the teaching learning methodology purported in the CPEA with a view to increase the language literacy of pupils, especially, poor performing pupils.Teachers and school administrators from participating schools were invited to a four-day residential workshop. Following this workshop, an officer was assigned to each school to provide teachers with additional support in the implementation of the CPEA Programme. Officers typically conduct at least two site visits per term.The data show that for all CPEA participating schools, there was a reduction in the non-mastery rate in the Grade Four Literacy Test. The lowest reduction of three per cent was observed in the school where the CPEA programme was not systematically implemented. Additionally, it was evident that in schools where the Book Reports and Writing Portfolios, activities designed specifically to improve language literacies, were emphasized, the reduction in the percentage of non-mastery and the increase in percentage of mastery was greater.The use of Book Reports, Writing Portfolios, Journals and other associated activities appear to be contributing factors in number of pupils demonstrating literacy at the Grade Four level.Keywords: continuous assessment, assessment for learning, improving literacy

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