Can a TAB Classroom Coexist in a World with Report Cards?

Assessing art is subjective, personal and can be difficult for many art teachers. Deciding what to grade, how to grade, and if you should grade can be a nightmare and take up hours and hours of time. Given the added stress and pressure from administration to show student growth through assessments, the thought of switching your teaching philosophy to a choice based art curriculum can appear to be confusing and time consuming. When you factor in the wide variety of projects students create for an assignment in a TAB classroom, the waters get even muddier.

How are you supposed to give out grades when one student creates a sculpture and another creates a drawing?

tab coexist with report cards
If I am not assessing the same thing for each project, then what AM I assessing? Below you can see 6 things you CAN assess in a TAB classroom, according to what’s been successful for me.
6 Things
Keep in mind, I am still responsible for common standards in my district, so finding balance is key. I use A LOT of student self reflection in my classroom, and in turn, I learn so much more about my students and their process, while also gaining the assessment data I need. But all of this is just the beginning!

In my presentation, “How to Assess a Choice Based Art Curriculum,” for AOE’s 2014 Summer Conference I will help you understand how you can create an organized system for grading choice art projects. I will give you examples of how you can use formative and summative assessments to make showing student proficiency in the standards easier than before. I believe through implementation of a choice based art curriculum I have a better understanding of the standards I’m teaching to, my lessons are directly aligned and my students understand and show proficiency in the standards. I’m confident you will see assessing TAB isn’t as difficult as you image it to be.

Join me as I explain the importance of using clear Student Learning Expectations and Standards Based Grading to guide your lesson planning and align your assessments.


Have you struggled to assess and implement TAB at the same time? 

How have you balanced assessment with more freedom for students? 


Cassidy Reinken

This article was written by former AOE writer and life-long learner, Cassidy Reinken.


  • lovely hiba

    Great post thanks for sharing with us


  • Molly Foster

    How can I see Cassidy’s session on TAB and other sessions if I missed this conference?Sounds like a topic that is very relevant to me!

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  • juyti

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