Grading Philosophy

There are a few different philosophies on grading, some of which have had media attention over the last few years (Re: “Truth in Grading). Here’s what I think:

** Grades should mean something.
I should have a clue what a student knows about this: CCGPS when I look at his grades. In the old days, a grade might say more about how hard a student worked or how organized he or she was than how much he actually knew.

** Grades should mean something.
I believe so strongly that having strong communication skills will have a positive impact on a young person’s life! I spend a lot of time writing notes on student writings. I try to give them feedback and then require that they do something with that feedback. Otherwise, students typically peek at the numerical score and toss the paper in the trash. In those cases, my feedback had no real impact and may be a waste of time.

**Grades should mean something.
. . . to students. I try to get students involved in tracking, goal-setting, and reflecting on their grades. I encourage students to see them as a tool to strategically pick our next activity/strategy/way to help them rather than a defining element in their lives.

** Grades are a snapshot.
Grades tell us how a student performed during one moment of time. If grades are to reflect what a student truly knows–right now- then grades should change when the student’s learning changes. As a result of this philosophy and in concert with our school’s best practices, I give re-takes of common assessments and replace the old scores with the most current “snapshot”
Attempt to “fill in the gaps” when I see by way of a test that students have not “gotten it”

I thought students and parents might want to know. 🙂

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