5th Annual CAfLN Conference and Members’ Symposium - May 4th and 5th, 2018

Sailing Forward with Assessment for Learning

An Opportunity for Learning, Conversation and Reflection

Double Tree by Hilton           Dartmouth, Nova Scotia

Why Canadian?


Conference Program now available!

The conference is an opportunity to share, learn and network with educators from K-12 and post secondary settings. It will include presentations and break-out sessions with leaders in assessment as well as opportunities to connect your learning with your own teaching context. Guest speakers will include CAfLN’s founding members – Ken O’Connor, Lorna Earl and Damian Cooper.

Town Hall - Thurday May 3rd, 2018     7:00 pm - 8:30 pm

To open this year's conference and symposium our founding members, Ken O’Connor, Lorna Earl and Damian Cooper will be panelists in a town hall style session. We invite registrants to provide us with questions that could be used for discussion during the town hall.

Thank you to our Town Hall sponsor


Conference - Friday May 4th, 2018     8:30 am - 4:00 pm

Opening Session – The opening and closing sessions will be live rehearsals with the Halifax All City Wind Ensemble conducted by Nathan Beeler and moderated by Lorna Earl featuring a guided discussion and discovery of key "look-fors" present in highly quality assessment for learning.  Conversations will focus on how this transparent and engaging example represents and models the best practices associated with AfL and how this can transfer into the classroom.

Materials from breakout sessions are now available

Assessing Reading in the Primary Grades – A Conversation between the Child, the Book, and YOU

Jackie Clarke and Damian Cooper

In this session, Damian and Jackie will focus on the importance of observational and conversational assessment practices and how to seamlessly integrate technology in this process.  Jackie Clarke will share her learning journey in assessing students’ reading using simple technology sources, such as a smartphone and a laptop computer, to assist in validating her assessment and to help students build their self-regulation skills.  Come learn from her ‘ups and downs’ in the world of children’s literacy and join the conversation to discuss how we can best support our students and our assessment practices with technology.

Jackie Clarke is a teacher at Oodenawi Public School, Halton District School Board, Ontario

Damian Cooper, a CAfLN co-founder, is an independent consultant with Plan Teach Assess


Communicating Clear Learning - A BC Perspective

Brooke Moore and Justin Green

This session will engage participants in thinking about the various ways of communicating learning; at the beginning and through the learning process, and ultimately reporting this learning in meaningful and creative ways.

During the session Brooke will share examples from Delta showing how teachers are using, creating, and sharing clear learning targets and success criteria from Grades K-12. She’ll share how the District is explicitly focusing on this innovation in a very unorthodox way and how it has spread across the District in unexpected ways.

Justin will then focus on how this intentional step in the learning process leads to incredibly authentic and meaningful reporting to parents. He’ll share how the concept of Student Voice has been incorporated into the learning process and formalized in Communicating Student Learning to parents.

Brooke Moore is Delta School District's District Principal of Inquiry and Innovation. As part of her role, Brooke co-leads a collaborative teacher inquiry initiative called the "Coordinators of Inquiry" which supports teacher leaders in their work with colleagues using a collaborative inquiry cycle.

Justin Green is Nanaimo Ladysmith Public Schools’ District Coordinator of Assessment, a Grade 3-4 Classroom Teacher, and currently the Vice-President for the Nanaimo District Teachers’ Association. Justin is also the Resources Chair for the CAfLN. In all of his roles, Justin looks to build capacity with respect to Assessment for, as, and of Learning.


Levelling Up: Harnessing the Power of Digital Formative Assessment Tools

Erin Dunn-Keefe and Denise Dodge Baker

Have you ever observed a child absorbed for hours in a video game? Is it a waste of time or a window into how 21st century learners engage in self-assessment, peer collaboration and grit in order to level up? If that's the case, is there a way to harness some of the features of these games to level up student learning? Check out this session to learn how digital tools like Quizlet, Showbie and others can help students to self-assess, evaluate their learning, capture their thinking, collaborate and share with you, the teacher.  Participants are encouraged to bring a device.

Erin Dunn-Keefe is an Instructional Coach with the South Shore Regional School Board, Nova Scotia

Denise Dodge Baker is the Coordinator of Assessment and Quality Instruction with the South Shore Regional School Board.

Thanks to Our Break Sponsor

Assessment for Learning When Percentage Grades Are Mandated

Ken O’Connor

The policy requirement for percentage grades in most Canadian provinces makes AfL more difficult but it can be done. In this session ways to assess - and grade - for learning will be provided and discussed.

Ken O’Connor, a CAfLN founding member, is an independent consultant with Assess for Success. A second edition of his book, How to Grade for Learning, was released last fall.


Superintendents in Focus: Charting a Course for AfL and Building on Success

Geoff Cainen

This session will feature a moderated panel discussion with three superintendents.  Topics to be explored will include challenges and successes with implementation of AfL, a review of what AfL means for student success and the importance of assessment literacy.

Geoff Cainen is the retired superintendent of the South Shore Regional School Board in Nova Scotia


Stories from the Frontier--Creating a Culture of Learning, an Independent School's Perspective

John Kerr and Bryan Williams

This session will aim to trace and relate our experiences as we continue to transition from a high school grading environment to a learner centred space, from classrooms that focus on percentage grades and summative assessments, to a model that promotes the importance of formative assessment and the role it can play in shaping student learning and understanding. We will aim to share our story and some of our practices, tips, and insights as our journey continues to evolve. Discussions will draw on our work with visible thinking strategies, cross-curricular teaching, and moving stakeholders from a place steeped in tradition to a place of best practice.

John Kerr and Bryan Williams are teachers at Balmoral Hall in Winnipeg, Manitoba

Thanks to Our Break Sponsor

Members' Symposium and AGM  - Saturday May 5th, 2018      9:00 am - 12:00 pm

Please note that you must be a member of CAfLN to participate in the symposium and AGM

Conference and Symposium Poster

Conference Hotel and Local Attraction Information