If you read my post about Real World Homework, then you already know that I love stamps. Next I created a similar document for the class objectives for the students and copied it on the other side. When students SHOW what they can do, I give them a stamp on that goal. It makes it about learning, instead of the grade. Sometimes I wear a little apron which has my stamps and other necessary items always at hand.
The Stamp sheet helps me in so many ways!
1. It makes me look at the entire unit before I teach it. I like to know where I’m going.
2. It helps students know what they will be learning. They like to know where they are going too.
3. If a student is absent, I only ask they show me they can do what ever “stamp” they missed. Usually they are more likely to do missed activities for the learning, not just the completion grade.
4. I write the date on one copy when we practice it. This serves as part of my lesson plans for my administration.
5. They can be used formative assessment checks. There are many ways to do this.
A. If you observe a student doing the goal during class, stamp it.
B. Give everyone a written or spoken quiz at the end of class or on a specific day. You can cover one stamp or several.
C. Students self-assess themselves. Keep one specific stamp design out that they can use.
D. Pick a few students every day to show what they can do.
E. Cut up the goals, put them in a bucket as you teach them and let students draw one or two. This keeps them on their toes!
6. No need to type up a study guide at the end of the unit. Study the goals on the sheet!
7. It reminds me that interpretive activities are just important as presentational. What can they understand?
8. It minimizes paper. I collect these at the end of the unit and enter it as one grade. Each stamp equals 5 points in my class. This counts as my class participation. I do not collect the activities they do to practice. It takes time, but it changes the way they think about participation and increases motivation.
Keep it a positive thing. If they can’t do, just tell them to try again. Some students take a little longer than others to get it. I also hold them to the proficiency level expectations. If they are suppose to be Novice high, then it needs to be in a sentence. This gives a chance to give them some quick feedback and guidance.
In the past I’ve also used the stamp sheets blank. The students copied the goal from the board each day.
My district specialist, Thomas Sauer, asked a group of us to extend this to all of our units, and then he formatted them. Here is a link to those documents. The stamp sheets can be modified too to fit your class. Click on the level, then the unit. It is the first document listed. This concept can work for any course. Share it!
JCPS World Language Documents