10 Formative Assessment Examples

Knowing what your students understand and do not is often the most crucial factor in making them feel valued and included in the class. Formative assessment is a powerful way to know how your students are doing in class, and it enables you to adjust your teaching to create a great learning environment. Figuring out the right way to do this can feel challenging, but it does not need to be hard at all. This article presents ten creative formative assessment examples to get better insight into your student's learning habits and make lessons fun!

Formative assessment definition

Formative assessment is a continuous prosses where you track your students throughout their learning experience. The goal is to understand how your students are doing while they are learning the subject, which usually takes a lot of time for teachers to understand. Questions like: when are my students ready to move on, do I need to go through this again, or are my students bored because they already know the subject well? These are questions that formative assessments try to answer, and it can be a great way to gain valuable insight into each student's learning pattern and how you can improve their learning over time!

Formative assessment vs. summative assessment

Formative and summative assessments are two very different approaches. Formative assessment measures a student's performance continuously over time, while summative assessment is often a one-time assessment with grades at the end of the subject.

Summative assessment feels very redundant for many teachers since your student's minds have already moved on to the next subject by the time you have your feedback ready for them. This type of assessment also brings stress for the students, and it's hard for them to continuously improve throughout the year when they only get a final exam in the form of a test or quiz at the end of each subject.

Formative assessments, on the other hand, are all very different and can bring a lot of fun to the classroom. It is a form of evaluation that can be done more or less on a daily basis without requiring a lot of time or work. Formative assessment examples are activities like mind-map, entry slips, think-pair-share, emoji surveys, and many others that we will dive into more detail below. The main point of formative assessment is to get a small glimpse into how your students are doing and then help them improve. Formative assessments enable you to give feedback during the time your students are open to improving, which is much more difficult to do with summative assessments.

10 formative assessment examples

Entry and exit slips

The time at the start and end of a lesson is some of the most valuable time during the class, but unfortunately, that part of the lesson usually just goes to waste. By using formative assessment examples like entry and exit slips, you can make your students jump straight into the assessment when they arrive at class and right before they head out.

Entry slips can be used in various ways to gauge everything from how well your students know a subject beforehand to how they feel today. You can make fun cards for your students to fill out in the morning and create polls or open-ended questions on the classroom screen for your students to answer. Activities like word cloud work perfectly to ask your students to come up with keywords for the subject you will teach them today. Templates like "Mindful morning" and "Draw an emoji or image showing how you feel today" are great ways to get your students straight into the formative assessment when they come into class.

Exit slips can be used in just the same way as entry slips. Use them when you are finished with today's topic to see how well your students understood the subject, and ask them for suggestions on how they want to work with the subject next time. Asking them for improvements to your teaching style will also make them feel included in the teaching and more engaged in what you teach them. For both entry and exit slips, you can use many of the other activities mentioned in the rest of the article. Some of the most popular exit slips in Curipod are; "After todays lesson, what do you want to learn more about?" and "What is the most important thing you have learned today?".


A think-pair-share activity is a great way to engage your students in multiple types of activities at the same time. This type of formative assessment delivers invaluable insight into how your students handle teamwork and presenting together in front of the class.

Start by introducing a topic or question that all the students should think about individually. Let them write down some notes if they want to. Then after they have had some time to think about the subject, you divide them into pairs of two and two or three and three. In groups, their goal is to discuss their findings and agree on a shared thought to present to the rest of the class.

For the presentation, groups can go up like normal and share their thoughts in front of everyone, or they can use Curipod to draw their ideas and then go up when their drawing is highlighted on the screen. A creative drawing on the screen to talk about creates a safer and more fun classroom experience for everyone.

Lesson feedback

Formative assessments can be performed in many ways, including letting your students give you feedback on your teaching and the lesson in general. It might sound scary at first, but it does not have to be scary at all, and your students gain a lot of ownership of their own learning by doing it.

Give your students a paper with prewritten text and boxes to check off with yes, a little bit, and no. Include questions like;

  • I understand this subject
  • I like this type of teaching
  • I would like to work in groups with this subject
  • I feel like I have contributed
  • I am tired today

Then you let each student cross the boxes that match their feeling and hand them in anonymously or with their name on it.

Make it more fun and avoid preparation by doing it on the big screen with Curipod. Make an activity in Curipod with a pre-defined drawing background and let your students draw in each box that fits them. Each time you use it, you only need to switch out the questions, and your students know what to do when they see it on the screen. You can use this template to get going: “Feedback on today's lesson”. Maybe you can add a couple of follow-up activities to make the formative assessment even more fun. You can, for example, use the heads-down activity below to mix it up.


Get every student to put their arms and head on the table, so nobody sees what anyone else answers. Then you can ask yes or no questions about anything you want to know and get them to raise their arm if they are going to answer yes. It creates a very safe classroom environment, and you, as a teacher, get a quick overview without needing to prepare anything.

Four corners - Multiple-choice

Formative assessment does not have to be boring at all. Four corners are a perfect formative assessment example that feels like a fun game for your students. Gather all your students in the middle of the classroom and give them multiple-choice questions with four alternatives. Each answer belongs to one corner of the room, and your students have to choose only one of them.

When everyone has found a corner, you can ask some of them why they are standing there and create a great discussion across the room. Then everyone gets back to the middle, and you ask a new question.

To kick off this formative assessment in the right way, ask your students what their favorite meal is for dinner. Doing that ensures everyone understands the assessment and is ready to answer your questions when you get into today's subject.

Emoji drawing

Sometimes students feel like they are being assessed at all times, but assessment does not need to feel like you are assessing your students at all.

You can make it super fun and unnoticeable by making your students draw creative emojis. Use the super simple "draw an emoji" template to ask your students how they feel at the end of the lesson or week. You can adjust the template to ask other questions as well.

  • Draw an emoji describing how you enjoyed this lesson
  • Draw an emoji describing how much you have learned this week
  • Draw an emoji describing how you feel when you play your favorite sport/game

Emoji survey

An emoji survey is also an alternative to doing a formative assessment without your students even noticing it's an assessment. Create a poll with different emojis, or use the pre-made template “Emoji Survey”. Follow up with some of your students by asking why they picked the emoji.

Tip: Make multiple rounds where you can get your students to vote for an emoji based on how much they liked the lesson, how they enjoyed the teaching style, or how their day is going.

One minute paper

Incentivize your students to pay attention during the class by making them write a quick summary at the end of the lesson. Each student takes one piece of paper and writes down what they thought was most important. Don't worry about the one-minute name of this formative assessment. You can give your students a couple more minutes to arrange their thoughts and write them down.

When they finish their writing, you can either make them hand in their notes at the end of class or continue the activity using Curipod. Start an open-ended question activity in Curipod where you ask, "What did you find most interesting about today's subject" and let them send in 2 or 3 suggestions. Then they can vote for their favorite ones, and you can discuss the top points together in class.

Roll the dice

There are many creative ways to do insightful and fun assessments for your students. One fun formative assessment example that makes your student use their voice is "roll the dice". Each student receives one dice, or you can pass one around. Before you start the game, you have to prepare six questions that your students will answer. Questions can be:

  • Today I learned a lot about...
  • I think the most important thing about this subject is...
  • I want to know more about...
  • I don't fully understand...

After you have your questions written up on the blackboard, one at the time spins their dice, and the number it lands on defines which question they are answering. You probably have many more students than six in your class, but that gives you an even better understanding of what your students know and still struggle with, as you will get multiple answers per question.

Tip: If you don’t have a dice you can google “roll the dice” and use Google’s virtual dice!


Self-evaluation is not only about reviewing each student, but it can also be helpful for your students to think about their own performance and how they are doing in general. You can use multiple activities mentioned earlier in the article to accomplish this formative assessment, like exit slips and emoji surveys.

One recommendation is to let your students be anonymous sometimes and other times not. Some students might rank themself higher when they know a teacher sees their name. You can compare the results over time and use other formative assessments to improve how students are doing over time.

Formative assessment in your teaching

Formative assessment is a creative and fun way to improve the classroom environment and each student individually. Compared to a stressful and difficult summative assessment, formative assessments can be performed with a range of different activities.

In implementing formative assessments in your teaching, you should measure performance over time and adjust your activities to allow for improvement and inclusion for everyone. Formative assessments like four corners, think-pair-share, and one-minute paper will enable you to see how students perform in different settings while gauging their understanding of the subject. Other activities like roll the dice and exit slips will allow students to get familiar with the feeling of letting everyone know that they don't fully understand certain things yet. The whole point of formative assessment is only to answer some things correctly, so your students can get feedback and improve in the future.

We hope some of the activities can make it easier to evaluate your students continuously and do that in a way that feels safe and super fun for your students. It's a great way to do assessments, and the possibility to alter your teaching to what they learn best from is incredible!