Gentle evaluation methods: the bullseye
When we were homeschooling, I found that one of the most common questions for homeschooling families is how to evaluate or keep track of knowledge progression, without doing tests or exams. Looking for alternative evaluation methods seemed to be a crucial part of homeschooling! Why, I wanted my child to be encouraged and to learn from his mistakes, not to be punished by them with a bad grade.
At home, we kept progess track by means of our main class book, where we wrote, pasted and added notes on what happened each day. We also used what the teacher that taught it to me called the BULLSEYE evaluation method. To do this article I tried to find information on it, but not much came up. In spanish, this method is considered a participative evaluation method, for it can be done with individuals and groups, and the student can do her/his own evaluation too. I love it, cause its a higly visual, easy and fast method, that both young and older children can understand. It also helps to se which areas the child needs to focus on
This is how finished bullseye evaluation sheet looks like: 1.
This method is really easy, it only takes three steps to set it up! You start by drawing a bullseye and dividing in as many sections as you need 😀
I recommend not spliting it too much. I usually split mine in three, and I use each section for 1 subject. I try to keep all three of them related (for example, the bullseye of “life skills” has: emergency, financial literacy and spirituality; the one on social sciences: history, communication, languaje) The outer circle is 0 zero knowledge level of anything. The green circle in the middle is your aim. (100%, or totally nailing it, or known by heart, etc) The GREEN LINE represents passing level (in Chile children need to get a 4 out of 7 to pass)
Next, write what you are evaluating in each section. As you can see in the first bullseye of this post, you can do questions, management skills, executive skills, subjects, etc. THis is one of the reasons I like this method: its sooo versatile.
Then, if you are doing a group evaluation (like: how much did I learn in this workshop) everyone draws a point as close to the center as they feel appropiate (so each attendant would put a dot in the outer line if they did not learn anything, and one in the center if they think they learnt lots.)
Now, when I use the bullseye for evaluating projects my child and I are working on, I ask where he feels he is, to see how his self-perception is doing. (He always thinks he’s nailing it! :D) With some subjects, such as reading, I just do it myself, cause there is no way he can grasp how close or far to the center of the bullseye he is. Also, each subject several leanirng objetives, so I add a small note about them next to the point. Like this:
You can use the same bullseye at the beggining of the year or workshop (as a assessment tool) and then again, say on mid term. It will look something like this:
This way, you can see your progress in a non judgamental, encouraging way, As you see in this last bullseye, one of the learning points is totally fullfilled, therefore we don’t need to spend more time focusing in it.
Hope you find this useful! R
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