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How to Report Learning Progress to Students & Parents

How to Report Learning Progress to Students & Parents
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  • 00:00 Reporting Progress
  • 00:29 Summative Documentation
  • 1:20 Formative Communication
  • 1:52 Standardized Documentation
  • 2:34 Casual Documentation
  • 3:16 Lesson Summary
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Lesson Transcript
Instructor: Jessica Whittemore

Jessica has taught junior high history and college seminar courses. She has a master's degree in education.

This lesson describes how to communicate learning progress. It specifically focuses on the tools of summative documentation, formative communication, and standardized documentation.

Reporting Progress

Gone are the days when students went to school and simply brought home a report card every few months. Nowadays, educational standards mandate much more reporting, so communication between the parent, the student, and the educator is paramount in most schools.

To dive into this a bit more, today's lesson will include some common ways to report student learning progress. Because this is such a broad topic, we'll stick to a few main reporting methods.

Summative Documentation

Our first type of communication is that of summative documentation. Summative documentation communicates student progress at the end of a learning period. Report cards are probably the most employed forms of summative documentation.

Like report cards, most summative documentation is official in nature. Due to its official nature, summative documentation usually requires a parent or guardian's signature. This is not only important to ensure student learning; in today's educational climate, it's also necessary for teacher protection. Unhappy is the day that a parent calls to tell administration they had no idea little Johnny had failed three of the last four quarters of math. Signed summative documentation will put this spark out before it has a chance to flame.

Formative Communication

Along with summative documentation, we have formative communication. Unlike the summative type, this type communicates student learning during instruction. Formative communication can be documented with things like mid-term progress reports. However, it can also be as casual as a phone call home or an encouraging teacher note.

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