FiSH-ing for peer assessment


I am part of a peer- assessment group of three staff looking into developing peer-assessment (yeh- I *know, but it’s not as complicated as it sounds, honest) as part of this I was observed today with my A2 class where I decided to try out the FiSH peer feedback system which @murphiegirl was kind enough to share with me. FiSH stands for Friendly, Specific and Helpful… The students were encouraged to work within these criteria and I checked their work with a star stamp which was awarded to comments that met the FiSH criteria.

I created a grid where the students had to work independently to summarise and then evaluate a theorist. I then put on some music and they played musical chairs to find a new piece of work to peer assess, which each student having their own colour pen so there was a level of accountability for the quality of the comments. The first assessment block was about literacy- so they had to mark the spellings and sentence construction of the piece of work in front of them. On the table they then rotated which piece of work they were peer marking. The second assessment block was for the quality of the summary of the Theorist. Again, comments had to met the FiSH criteria. The third and final block was the the quality of the evaluation. By the time we had reached this stage the class had really got into the swing of things and were writing some very constructive comments.

The students then returned to their seats to see the peer assessment, and they were asked to summaries and evaluate the second theorist. It was notable that the quality of work rose considerably as they had a clearer understanding of the peer assessment process. Again, musical chairs and the whole process ran again for a second theorist. Finally they returned to their seats and the routine was repeated again. I *think that each student had a meaningful peer interaction with nine other members of the class. Their average target grade is a A for A2 so this is some level of feedback as well as consolidating their original learning.

A a plenary the students had a first go at a silent debate using the theorists from todays lesson. We wrote on/vandalised the tabes with board one to answer the question and argue ‘Are we all middle class now’ turns out we are not. Phew. And it turns out the pen can off the tables of. Double Phew. The gusto that destroying college property evoked was not all that surprising, but the level of work was excellent and demonstrated high order skills. Sociology win.





One response to “FiSH-ing for peer assessment

  1. Rachel – Again sound pedagogy here and an excellent explanation of how and why your style in the classroom has evolved.

    You can also see why the students are performing better – not just against the national stats but also probably compared to previous classes of yours. More time spent on challenging, deep thinking tasks in lessons leading to consolidation exercises at home and in class with clear, focused feedback is enabling your students to work at the higher levels.

    So well done to you and your students – you clearly have placed their desire to be the best at the heart of your planning and lesson creativity and you have many great ideas to showcase.

    Thanks for sharing


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