Day 100 (of 186) the olympics as summarize assessment (yet still formative for what’s next)

Day 100 (of 186) the olympics as summarize assessment (yet still formative for what’s next)

Our class has been having fun with the Winter Olympics. We’ve looked at stories from the past (Jamaican bobsled team, Eddie the Eagle Edwards) that show coming in first is not always “the” goal for everyone. Sometimes the journey is better than the destination!

Olympians model perseverance and grit. Failing but not letting false starts end their doing —> 2018 has the cross country skier who fell down during the mass start but still came in first after an amazing comeback:

It helps show that “fails” don’t mean the learning or doing stops – means you gotta retool and re-aim your focus (and adapt your coping steps plan).

It’s also about trying something new – like curling “mixed doubles” event- one that had a bit of criticism in the Canadian press:

Because sometimes embracing something new is uncomfortable? But I know that watching the mixed doubles has me tempted to unretire my broom and slider! As while the criticism that they didn’t practice as a duo much before the event, those curlers have been working on their draw wait and sweeping skills (why we sent 3rds and not skips!) for decades – and it was just a transference of skills – kinda like how many NCAA football players end up playing with different rules in the CFL.

We have also been able to put some Design Thinking to action with an Olympic theme by designing our own Olympic medals

Hmmm wonder if we’ll be able to design the next demonstration sport… our version of the biathlon that uses snowballs instead of guns! (We are doing “Olympic afternoons” cross country skiing…luging (crazy carpets) and other events as we can find a way to adopt them to school – hockey tournament next week)

And we can learn that just because someone is expected to win a gold….you still need to run the event! And just because an alpine skier wipes out, we can still be pretty sure that they could finish the race….just not today…

And stories like 17 year olds winning golds are always fascinating (Chloe Kim)- but so are the returns by veterans like White (though there may be some personal scandals he has to deal with as well – and the ongoing theme of how do personal and professional works blend….

The Olympics are the time where new sports find new fans (love all the slope style events) and sometimes they can become an earworm that you can’t get enough of….at least for a fortnight…

But a chance for kids to be inspired – to see athletes come from the tiniest of towns (like -Alert Bay BC) and being able to compete with the best of the best….

And sometimes be frustrated because during training you may have had a ski jump of 110 metres but because of wind and knees moving a fraction of a second early you only got 95 for “the test”. Yet also knowing that just because you didn’t earn a medal…there’s another Olympics four years from now….

And the mishmash of formative and summative assessments continue. Skaters can land a triple axle, but maybe not when the pressure is on….that time. So with learners, if we know they can subtract but when demanded to do it as part of the test, if they make a mistake….does that confirm they don’t know how to do it? Sometimes summarize assessments don’t tell the whole story…..which reiterated why I prefer descriptive feedback loops that show the whole process – and yet sometimes “the event” is where the unlikeliest of underdogs shine brightest!

Looking forward to seeing what stories stick with us after 2018!


About technolandy

Educator in BCs Sunny Shuswap Pushing 'technologization' in education: blending technology and curriculum seamlessly. Advocate for better understanding of Anxiety in Education (and use of self-regulation) Utilizing ePortfolios & Descriptive Feedback
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2 Responses to Day 100 (of 186) the olympics as summarize assessment (yet still formative for what’s next)

  1. Stacey says:

    Also, the Olympics gives us the chance to see into the “anxiety toolbox” of others:
    Coach knits to keep calm. Awesome!

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