Saturday, August 9, 2014

You Oughta Know About...the Learning Scale!

Hey y'all! This month I'm linking up with Mrs. McClain over at Buzzing with Mrs. McClain for the monthly You Oughta Know blog hop! We'll be sharing tips, advice, websites, and products that teachers just oughta know about! Make sure that you check out the other blogs at the end of this post to discover more things that You Oughta Know!
My blog hop this month is going to be quick and to the point! School started back Thursday for me and I have been busy, busy, busy trying to make this the best year ever!! I have such a sweet group of kiddos! 3 sweet groups of kiddos actually!

I have an informal assessment strategy that you just oughta know about! It's called the Learning Scale and I'm just obsessed!!

Now, we as teachers need to constantly be assessing our kiddos. Are they getting the concept I'm teaching? Is anyone getting the concept I'm teaching? Do they already know all this stuff? The Learning Scale is one way to informally assess your kiddos over the concept being taught. The best thing about the scale: it's a quick and easy assessment strategy!

Now this is not an original idea obviously. There are variations of this scale everywhere! I just prettied it up and added clipart (thanks to Laura for the original version!). The great thing about the Learning Scale is that the kids are responsible for deciding where they are at on the scale! It's a great way for students to self-assess their learning. Self-assessment can be just as important as the assessments that we administer to our students! The learning scale asks the students to really think about how well they understand a concept. It starts at 0 with a poster that says 'I do not understand.'

The next level is a 1 with 'I understand when the teacher helps me.'

The next level is a 2 with 'I understand and can do it on my own.'

The final level is a 3 with 'I understand and can teach a friend.'

This is how the Learning Scale works in my room:

I usually have the kiddos at the carpet when I use the learning scale because it's easy for me to see all the kids quickly. I usually say something like, "Tell me how well you understand finding the main idea of a passage." Then the kids hold up their number from 0-3 (the sign language numbers on the poster are so children can be reminded of the number to hold up). Now this next part is VERY important to me. I have my kids close their eyes while we do this whole process. I don't want any kids to be embarrassed because they are a zero and their buddy is a 3. I also don't want Johnny putting up a three so he can be just like his friend Jesse. I want an accurate self-assessment and I think having their eyes closed is the best way to achieve this. I also give them a little while to think before they put their numbers up. I always tell them that they have to really look inside themselves to figure out which number they are. I also tell them that if they don't really look inside themselves and tell the truth about what number they are, I won't be able to help them when they need it.

Those are some of my kiddos up there doing the Learning Scale. Creepy happy faces, right?! They were telling me how well they understand our class rules. That's the reason why everyone is a 2 or a 3!

Now for the awesome part: I have my Chevron Learning Scale posted as a freebie in my Teachers Pay Teachers store! You can download it by clicking on the pic below!

 Learning Scale Freebie!

I hope you'll use this Learning Scale as a quick and easy assessment strategy in your class!

Don't forget to check out the other blogs in the blog hop below!!


  1. That is such a great idea! I love that you can quickly and quietly see who is "getting it" and who still needs help. Thanks for sharing.

  2. I really like this idea and love the signs!!!!

    4th Grade with Glitter

  3. I really, really like your LEARNING SCALE, Stephanie. This is a wonderful strategy to see where your kiddos are on their learning. Thank you so much for sharing such a valuable idea!
    Best wishes!
    Jen :)

  4. I was so excited to find your post for the You Oughta Know Blog Hop, I'm your newest follower. I've pinned you too!
    Fern Smith's Classroom Ideas!
    Fern Smith's Pinterest Boards!

  5. Thanks so much for sharing this! I'm taking a break from teaching to stay home with my daughter, but I'm definitely going to save it for the future!

    Mrs. Plemons' Kindergarten

  6. This was a great post to read. The learning scale is a great tool to gauge student understanding.

  7. I love this quick assessment of who needs additional help. Teaching Science With Lynda

  8. What a great idea! I have never seen anything like that. How helpful.

  9. I love the Learning Scale! I had not seen that before. I like sign language type signals with the students. Thank you for the cute freebie! I just downloaded it! I will go back and leave a rating now. :-)

    i Heart Second

    The Think Aloud Cloud

  10. This is wonderful and the posters are so cute!
    Mrs. Paul's Corner