11:29 PMCreating Language Portfolio
The idea of creating language portfolio is connected with the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (CEF or CEFR) produced by the Council of Europe in 2001. It provides a common basis for learning -creating language curriculum, examinations, textbooks, etc. It describes learners’ language performance at six levels (A1 and A2 : Basic user, B1 and B2: Independent User, C1 and C2: Proficient User). |
The European Languages Portfolio developed from the Common European Framework of Reference for Language Learning (CEF), in order to support lifelong language learning and to promote understanding and tolerance across languages and cultures. It was launched in 2001 by the Modern Languages Division of the Council of Europe.
It is a 3-part document in which language learners can record their language learning and cultural experiences. The portfolio is the property of the learner, and the basic idea is that students collect samples of their work in their portfolio. Most of the time, these samples will be texts created by the students, but might also include photos of classroom scenes, audio recordings, or even DVDs. All these documents provide evidence of a student's performance, e.g. during a discussion or a role play. Naturally, collecting such performance data over a period of several years requires a basic level of understanding and motivation on the students' part.
There is an adult version, with standard presentation of the passport across Europe, and a junior version for younger learners. The portfolio belongs to the learner and can be added to and up-dated as needed.
What is a Portfolio
Portfolio is the international concept coming from Latin. Portare which means to carry and folium which means paper; English ”A portable case for holding papers, drawings.”
Looking into a lot of schools and documents about portfolio on the Internet I have seen different Portfolio definition depending on their learning philosophy and curriculum.
Most of them include the following:
• A collection of students’ work, which demonstrates their skills and accomplishments.
• It is more than just a group of projects and papers stored in folders.
• It is used to demonstrate students’ achievements in one subject area or across the curriculum
Types of Portfolio
There are many different types of portfolios, each of which can serve one or more specific purposes as part of an overall school or classroom assessment program. The following is a list of the types most often cited in the literature:
• Documentation Portfolio: This type is also known as the "working" portfolio. Specifically, this approach involves a collection of work over time showing growth and improvement reflecting students' learning of identified outcomes. The documentation portfolio can include everything from brainstorming activities to drafts to finished products. The collection becomes meaningful when specific items are selected out to focus on particular educational experiences or goals. It can include the best and weakest of student work.
• Process Portfolio: This approach documents all facets or phases of the learning process. They are particularly useful in documenting students' overall learning process. It can show how students integrate specific knowledge or skills and progress towards both basic and advanced mastery. Additionally, the process portfolio inevitably emphasizes students' reflection upon their learning process, including the use of reflective journals, think logs, and related forms of metacognitive processing
• Showcase Portfolio: This type of portfolio is best used for summative evaluation of students' mastery of key curriculum outcomes. It should include students' very best work, determined through a combination of student and teacher selection. Only completed work should be included. In addition, this type of portfolio is especially compatible with audio-visual artifact development, including photographs, videotapes, and electronic records of students' completed work. The showcase portfolio should also include written analysis and reflections by the student upon the decision-making process(es) used to determine which works are included.
Principles of Portfolio
Whatever the portfolio types can be, they have got three principles in common:
Why use portfolios
Teachers can use LP for a variety of specific purposes
• encourage self-directed learning
• enlarge the view of what is learned
• foster learning about learning
• demonstrate progress toward identified outcomes
• provide a way for students to value themselves as learners
The aims are to reflect change and growth over a period of time, provide for continuity in education from one year to the next, enhance the assessment process by revealing a range of skills and understandings one students' parts, encourage student, teacher, and parent reflection
Parts of Portfolio
Contains the student’s and his teacher’s notes about him and the languages he studies and uses as well as self-assessment linked to the common reference levels in the CEFR. Learners record their formal qualifications and language and intercultural skills, experiences and achievements. There is also a grid for self assessment.
The Language Biography helps learners to plan, reflect on and assess their progress. It includes information that demonstrates achieved results.
The Dossier is for storing evidence of the language skills which have been recorded in the biography or passport, samples of your language practice proving your achievements
The Phases of Portfolio Development
Organization and Planning - This initial phase of portfolio development entails decision-making on the part of students and teachers. By exploring essential questions at the beginning of the process, students can fully understand the purpose of the portfolio and its status as a means of monitoring and evaluating their own progress. Key questions for the teacher and the student must include:
• How do I select times, materials, etc. to reflect what I am learning in this class?
• How do I organize and present the items, materials, etc. that I have collected?
• How will portfolios be maintained and stored?
Collection - This process involves the collection of meaningful artifacts and products reflecting students' educational experiences and goals. Decisions must be made at this phase about the context and contents of the portfolio based upon the intent and purposes identified for it. The selection and collection of artifacts and products should be based upon a variety of factors that can include:
• Particular subject matter;
• A learning process; or
• Special projects, themes, and/or unites.
All selections included in the collection should clearly reflect the criteria and standards identified for evaluation.
Reflection - Wherever possible, there should be evidence of students' metacognitive reflections upon the learning process and their monitoring of their evolving comprehension of key knowledge and skills. These reflections can take the form of learning logs, reflective journals, and other forms of reflections upon their experiences, the thinking processes they have used, and the habits of mind they employed at given points in time and across time periods. In addition, teacher and/or parent reflections upon the products, processes, and thinking articulated in the portfolio should also be included wherever appropriate.
Portfolios allow to see the student as an individual,bring into focus the strength of each student, clarify possibilities, demonstrate what the student is able to, demonstrate what can be improved.
The new teacher role
Though the teacher role is still to teach, it gets some new features. He becomes a real facilitator, guides more than before, is a leader of her class, has competence in different methods and strategies, know the importance of building relations, gets the competence to operate in a new learning environment.
Student benefits (a child-centered idea)
Portfolio-method learning develops the full range of child skills:
intellectual skills of describing, drawing conclusions, using the imagination, planning, analyzing
social skills of making decisions, sharing, co-operating, appreciating contributions
learner independence skills of making responsible choices, deciding how to complete tasks, getting information, evaluating results.
But one of the main benefits is the promotion of leaner reflection. They become familiar with the task of thinking. Being involved in the Portfolio process, children have to think about their language needs, goals, weaknesses and strengths. They need to answer lots of challenging questions like
What am I most proud of?
Have my results changed?
What does this/that work reveal about me?
What can I do to improve my learning style
Modern children are the children of screen information. So, the idea of creating electronic portfolios seems to interest them greatly. The teacher should take it into account as well as the fact that information is easily stored in a computer hard drive, floppy disk, CD, or other means. In addition, e-Portfolios enhance computer and technology skills. Students gain the experience of creating, selecting, organizing, editing, evaluating the portfolios. They gain a sense of improvement by displaying, sharing, and presenting their e-Portfolios to teachers, parents, and the community.