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Schoket 1 Philosophy of Classroom Assessment: Permeations of Confucius Discoursing on my philosophy of classroom assessment conjures the analects of the most

prominent Eastern sage in human history, Kongzi, the aster Confucius! A "efining feature of

Confucius# ruminations is his emphasis on e"ucation an" stu"y!1 Principles of these teachings continue una$ate" into mo"ernity, an" thus permeate my o%n tenets in my role an" responsi$ility as teacher, ultimately manifesting in %hat & $elie'e to $e one of the most integral aspects of the classroom en'ironment, the assessment of stu"ent learning! (he "etermination of stu"ent gains in un"erstan"ing an" thinking a$ility ) "eci"ing if or to %hat le'el e*uita$le learning goals ha'e $een achie'e" ) is the lea"ing e"ge in my philosophy of classroom assessment as it relates to my most major role an" responsi$ility! (ruly, the place of assessment in the classroom is to gauge "e'elopment, not simply challenging %hat a stu"ent kno%s in a snapshot of time, an" & firmly $elie'e, as Confucius "oes in his philosophical composition, The Analects, that +learning %ithout thought is la$or lost, thought %ithout learning is perilous- .Lunyu /!101! & hope to strike a $alance an" position myself in the mi""le course $et%een learning an" reflecting .thought1 as the Eastern teacher appears to "o! Stanfor" 2ni'ersity encyclope"ist, 3effrey 4iegel, remarks ho% these pe"agogical metho"s +are strikingan" highlights Confucius# short length of "iscourse on su$jects, his posing of lea"ing *uestions, use of analogies, an" keen literary connections to scaffol" learning until stu"ents come into their role an" arri'e at insightful, satisfactory ans%ers! (his classical style of learning is still amazingly rele'ant for to"ay#s classrooms, is mutually $eneficial an" translates to the %ell5foun"e", stu"ent5centere" role in classroom instruction! (he metho"ology here $egets the necessity of properly aligne" assessments,

4iegel, 3effrey, 6Confucius6, (he Stanfor" Encyclope"ia of Philosophy .Summer /718 E"ition1, E"%ar" 9! :alta .e"!1, forthcoming 24; < =http:>>plato!stanfor"!e"u>archi'es>sum/718>entries>confucius>?!

Schoket / something a ta$le of specification can reme"y, an" shoul" $e inclu"e" in any planning of stu"y! & %oul" a"" to this the supplement of e'aluating ho% stu"ents come to their ans%ers %ith formati'e assessments, $oth formal an" informal, to gui"e instruction, presenting material at necessary cogniti'e le'els! As stu"ents, this is their primary responsi$ility, to respon" an" interact, as the teacher, formati'e assessments create the roa"map to reach instructional goals! @ut these goals are, in part, "eri'ati'es of "iagnostic assessments, %hich are essential in "etermining %hat the aims of the learners shoul" $e, $efore stu"y $egins! (he t%o assessments together create a "ecisi'e importance for the success of the stu"ents! A particularly fa'orite form of "iagnostic an" formati'e assessments of mine is the self5 assessment! (his is a useful strategy for $oth stu"ents an" teachers as it allo%s for mostly unfettere" criti*ues of performance, attempting to encourage moti'ation an" confi"ence in the future $y "iscerning fault an" taking correcti'e measures to "iminish learning gaps! As Confucius says in The Analects, +Aur greatest glory is not in ne'er falling, $ut in rising e'ery time %e fall,- %hich reigns true for stakehol"ers in the classroom! @oth roles stan" to $enefit from the reflection on learning, or else la$or is lost, so this rise from failure is crucial in the process of assessment! (hese self5realizations processes alter teaching an" learning in a classroom, for they eBamine an" e'aluate %hat %orks %ith $oth an" %hat nee"s to $e a"juste"! &f Confucius has anything relate" to say a$out classroom assessment interacting %ith teaching an" learning, it is to +stu"y the past if you %oul" "efine the future!-/ (his sentiment is "irectly relate" to progress monitoring an" the use of 'arie" "ata sets to make ju"gments for mo"ifying instruction an" assessment accor"ingly! 9um$ers "o not lie, so if the interpretation of "ata is true to form, it %ill gui"e teaching an" learning to attaina$le goals! (he a"justment an" a"aptation of curriculum

The Analects, c! 077 CE

Schoket 8 accor"ing to the attaina$ility of instructional o$jecti'es is also fun"amental in the philosophy of Confucius, as he proclaims, +Chen it is o$'ious that the goals cannot $e reache", "onDt a"just the goals, a"just the action steps!-8 Eis %or"s, these *uotations specifically, resonate %ith current pe"agogy an" shoul" $e hee"e" in the surroun"ing professional sphere of the classroom! &nterpolating current practice %ith Confucius# *uotation, %e fin" congruency %ith the i"ea of taking action in planning an" ho%, as e"ucators, action research opens a'enues to e'aluate the plan to%ar"s goal achie'ement! Action research lea"s to an element of classroom assessment that is of critical importance $ut "oes not necessarily take place in the classroom! (he %orkplace itself ) that is, groups of faculty mem$ers colla$orating outsi"e the classroom for common $enefit across "isciplines, is an area %here great stri"es can $e ma"e in creating assessment that positi'ely affects ho% teachers operate in the 'ery %orkplace! Sometimes a "aunting task for teachers, impro'ements in assessments an" outcomes just takes time! Confucius says, +(he man %ho mo'es a mountain $egins $y carrying a%ay small stones!- (he i"ea is not to tackle e'erything at once, rather, it is to take time an" care in "isco'ering %hat %orks for the stu"ents! (he triangulation of "ata is once instance of net%orking $et%een teachers to un"erstan" the point at %hich they can $egin to mo'e the stones, making %ay for the entire mountain! (his means teachers shoul" "efinitely $e operating colla$orati'ely in this en"ea'or!


The Analects, c! 077 CE