According to Hattie, feedback is one of the top 10 influences on student achievement.
Over these last couple of weeks my class has been making a great effort to ask for and offer feedback to each other. I first showed my Grade 4 students this fantastic video called Austin’s Butterfly.
They were so impressed with the results they wanted to try it out themselves. We started with their latest writing. They had been writing about their opportunities, the benefits, the costs and showing empathy to others who do not have the same opportunities. Immediately we started giving each other feedback and the students were receptive and determined to improve. Sometimes we set the bar too low and allow students to stop after the first or second draft. Students will rise to higher expectations if we offer them the opportunity. The students wrote, edited, requested feedback, edited, re-wrote, and continually assessed themselves through a rubric. It was fantastic.
Our second concerted effort with feedback was in our art class. Using chalk pastels, everyone was creating an image following a style from the book If The World Were A Village. While working, the students would choose to place their artwork on the whiteboard ledge, ring a chime and ask their classmates for feedback. Wow. It was amazing. The kids were offering feedback (not judgement) and the artists were listening carefully and heading back to the art table (mini lesson: you receive feedback and then decide what you want to do with it, artist’s choice).
I wish I had taken photos along the way. The differences between the first draft and the final were stunning. Here are a few of the finished pieces, worked and re-worked after much feedback.
Overheard from the students:
“Wow! Feedback is great! It gives me so many new ideas and makes my work so much better!”
“It’s the details that make the most difference! I love feedback!”