Holly Beth McDonnell

Primary Teacher

Westfield Primary

  • Digital Learning: Formative Assessment

The use of two stars and a wish as a Self-Assessment Strategy


The Scottish Government recognises Assessment as a transformative tool within our education system, that empowers both the learners and teachers to promote ownership of learning (Scottish Government, 2011). It is important that we as teachers continuously assess through formative assessment methods as part of the learning process in order to have a clear indication of progression and inherit pupils with a deeper understanding of their own performance in relation to the learning taking place (Barlett, 2015). Throughout time, formative assessment strategies have evolved and become embedded into all aspects of learning and teaching to enhance learners’ development (Gardner, 2012). 

It has been argued that formative assessment is at the heart of learning and teaching (Clarke, 2001, p. 2). Self-assessment is recognised as an influential tool that encourages children to reflect on prior learning experiences and gain insight to what has been learned and achieved.  

For the purposes of this inquiry, the focus will be on self-assessment. With a specific focus on the ways in which the ‘Two Stars and a Wish’ (2S&W) technique can be used to increase motivation and support pupil progress during home/school learning. This method was tactically chosen as it provokes personal target setting (Towler and Broadfoot, 1992). 


The purpose of this practitioner enquiry was to engage in professional literature and investigate what happens when the self-assessment method of 2S&W is introduced to children through a digital platform and continued within the classroom setting. Consequently, this enquiry aimed to focus on encouraging the children to set their next steps for learning upon reflection of their own work.  

Download Practitioner Enquiry