October 22, 2007

First report cards

Posted in grading at 3:11 am by mrsmauck

I post my first set of grades tomorrow, and I know I’ve got a bunch of kids who are going to be sorely disappointed. I hate that the grades aren’t so much representative of intelligence, but of good work habits. The kids who follow directions, ask questions and seek my help, and turn things in on time have an A or B. The kids who turn things in late and don’t follow directions have C’s or D’s. The kids with F’s either haven’t turned in at least one major assignment or have turned every assignment in so late that they haven’t gotten passing grades on them.

Every student who has an F in my class failed to read at least one of the two required library books. Next 9 weeks, I’m going to set a halfway point deadline, by which they must have their first book completed. So I feel like many of those zeroes are partly my fault, as my deadline for both books to be completed was the end of the nine weeks. BUT many of the kids who are failing did not read a library book at all! Tomorrow, I’m going to try to target these kids in the library, and help them find books on their reading level and in their range of interest.

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3 Comments »

  1. Never feel guilty about awarding students the grade they earned. It’s good to think about ways to help the kids learn more responsibility (adjusting deadlines or whatever) if they seem to be deficient, but these are not kindergartners. Their zeroes are entirely their own fault. They knew they had an assignment, they chose not to do the assignment, and they reaped the consequences of ignoring an assignment. No part of that is your fault. Keep after ’em.

  2. My report cards go out next week and, like you, I’m going to have some disappointed students. When will they ever learn that work matters?

  3. Amy said,

    Mrs. Mauch – I’ve just stumbled upon your blog and I couldn’t be any happier. I, too, am a first year teacher (7th grade ELA) and I read your entry from April 2007 wherein you speak about teaching reading/writing in 90 minute blocks. So far, I’ve been trying to alternate days, but I’m beginning to believe that this isn’t working and breaking the block up into thirty minute segements (+/-) may be better. I also have a text and a clearly established state framework. Are you still working within this philosophy or did you find “a better way?” Hang in there with grades – sometimes first semesters are a wake up call. Amy


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