As many of you who read my blog frequently know I started checking out Whole Brain Teaching several months ago. Part of their program is simple assessments that you can do with your students that doesn't require paper and pencil and you still can find out who understands the skill and who is still lost.
For example if learning nouns you could say A noun is something you do? The students would say "yes way or no way." Then you might say A noun is a person, place, or thing? They would say yes way or no way. A lake is a noun? A dog is a noun? Grandma is a noun? Swim is a noun? Etc.
Then if you notice the majority seem to have an understanding of it have all your students put their head down with their eyes closed. Give your students the same type of questions and they put their thumbs up if they think it is true and thumbs down if not true. Whole Brain Teaching calls this alternative assessment QT.
Click on the hyperlink on Whole Brain Teaching to check out some great ideas to keep your students engaged in learning!