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Monitoring the key competencies at Frimley School

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Frimley School Deputy Principal, Kirsty Jones, discusses the way students use self-assessment as a way of monitoring their development of the key competencies.

Professional learning conversations

These questions and suggested actions encourage you to reflect on your own school context.

Key competencies

The New Zealand Curriculum (p38) states:

"With appropriate teacher guidance and feedback, all students should develop strategies for self-monitoring and collaborative evaluation of their performance in relation to suitable criteria. Self-assessments might involve students examining and discussing various kinds of evidence, making judgments about their progress, and setting further goals."

  • In what ways are your students encouraged to make judgements about where they are at with the key competencies?
  • What kinds of evidence is needed by the student and school to show success?
  • In what ways could your students use their judgment of their progress to set further goals for achieving with the key competencies?

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Use this resource from Assessment Online to assist you and your students with self assessment in the classroom.


From what we did with the key competencies we had to change our planning formats because they were from a big idea perspective, which leant the teachers towards focusing on context. And we felt we needed to be focusing on needs. It can be key competencies needs, learning needs, skill needs, those kinds of things. And from that the context of what’s relevant and what’s happening might be different in each classroom even though they are focusing on similar needs.

We shouldn’t be going down the path of giving the children a level. Even saying to them “you’re at this stage of a key competency and moving to this stage of a key competency”. All our lives we are trying to get better at the key competencies. The children should be able to talk about evidence that they can provide to demonstrate their key competencies. They should be able to record it and share it with their parents stating “This is why I judge myself as having developed good listening within the key competency of managing self, I can prove it to you”. And even with pieces of work, “This is a piece of work I completed within the time limit I was set and I am pleased with my completion rate which shows I managed myself well within that task.” So the children are proving as opposed to the teachers making the judgment. 

The teacher’s role is to question. If they are not happy with the evidence provided they should ask can you show me more.

Updated on: 13 Jun 2009