July 20, 2016

How to Create and Give Ipas: Part 6: The Presentational Task

From what I've seen, the presentational task is the most easily understood of the three IPA assessments.  I think this is because as teachers, we inherently have our language students write and occasionally present. Since most people already have a pretty good idea of what the presentational mode is, my goal for today's post is to share some hopefully new, or at least motivating ideas of some different ways to approach this task. 

But first, a few things about the presentational task.  This assessment can be either written or spoken or combined to have both, which is my personal favorite. Presentational speaking can be done in person or digitally performed. This is one area where I think almost anything goes.  I always aim to create a real-world reason for doing the task in the first place and to use a clear rubric with detailed descriptors.

After a few years of toying with different rubrics, I've finally adapted two by blending and adjusting one of Laura Terrill's presentational rubric and a Ohio Department of Education novice-mid rubric. While it takes a while to get comfortable using a rubric and it typically requires some tweaks for future assessments, here are the grading categories and goal descriptors for the rubrics I'm currently using for Spanish I.

Here are a few examples of various longer summative presentational assessments I've given as part of IPAs. I tend to do presentational projects every other unit and incorporate a different ed tech tool each time. I always provide pre-writing graphic organizers for these as they tend to help students feel less overwhelmed and more clear about the task at hand.

Below is an example of a student's family project:

Here is an example of a project dealing with likes and basic personal descriptions:

Finally, here's another example of a student presentation for a gustar unit reviewing personal descriptions:

For shorter writing assessments as part of my IPAs, the prompts tend to look more like the one below.
I think it's important to try to mix up presentationals as much as possible and to use them to give students voice. While kids will gradually learn to have fun with interpersonal speaking assessments, it's the presentational assessments, especially the projects, that kids will remember about our classes. I still remember the projects I did for my own high school Spanish classes. So be creative, let the kids have play with the language, and express themselves as much as possible.


  1. Wow! I just devoured your entire series on IPAs--thank you, thank you, thank you! I needed all this information. I just began writing IPAs with a colleague and it was taking me forever to get through one theme. You have saved me hours of work with these helps. I'm following you on Pinterest, as well.

  2. Kristen, I am so honored and excited that you got so much out of this blog series on IPAs. I wrote them for that exact reason- so that other language teachers that are interested could save time and benefit from some of the lessons I've learned doing them over the years. I hope you really enjoy using the IPAs you got ok TPT- please please leave your feedback :) let me know if there is anything I can do to support you while you begin implementing your new assessments :)

  3. I completely agree. I just read through it and now I'm about to reread it. It was really great! Thank you!