Date of Award

Fall 2017

Document Type

Masters Plan B

Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)

Department

Science & Mathematics Teaching Center

Advisor

Audrey Kleinsasser

Second Advisor

Scott Chamberlin

Third Advisor

Mark Lyford

Abstract

(1)The action research project focused on formative assessment in the context of an elementary education gifted and talented program. The project took place over the course of ten months in a mid-sized district in northeastern Wyoming and included a review of literature as well as the development and field test of an original teacher self assessment tool. The review of literature identified and confirmed features of higher order thinking and creativity that reflected best practices in the field. Higher order thinking and creativity features were then displayed in an original auditing matrix, the assessment tool. The matrix guides a curriculum reviewer to look for elements of higher order thinking skills, creative thinking skills, and assessment in elementary gifted and talented curriculum. Using the matrix, three units of study representing the third, fourth, and fifth grades, were examined. Strengths and weaknesses of the units were discerned, even as the matrix was field-tested and refined. The matrix provides a formative assessment tool for a teacher, a team of teachers, or an external observer to examine evidence of best practices in elementary gifted and talented curricular materials.

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