|My First & Second Grade Report Cards|
Do they really all think that teachers just 'GIVE' grades based on some nebulous reason? Don't they understand that teachers work long hours finding sums and averages based on the student's assessments? Or don't they realize that hours are spent filling in checklists based on whether the student has completed the standards set by the state?
The business of report cards is a touchy subject at best. When mentioned in most any setting it brings recounts of days gone by.
"Do you remember when I locked myself in the bathroom and wouldn't come out? How I shoved my report card under the door for mom and dad?" my sister asked me. Apparently, her report card was not one that she was proud of and was in fact rather embarrassed by it. "What happened? I thought you were always an "A" student!" I probed further.
Well, it started out like this......She was an all "A" student in elementary school (something which I was NOT). When she got to junior high school she was an "A" student as well. But one day, in science her class was asked to collect insect specimens in jars with the intent of eventually mounting them on a board. They were supposed to collect 50. She was horrified with the activity and would not participate. And so, led to the decline of her straight "A" days. Since she wouldn't complete the project she was given a zero (that day till the end of the project) and subsequently received an "F" in the class. Each day she would go into science class and feel worse and worse about the events taking place. Knowing she was failing made her try less.
Did she receive the "F" because she didn't KNOW the information? Or wasn't learning? Or was it an "F" based on effort? How should she have been graded?
I think the following video by Rick Wormeli (author of Fair Isn't Always Equal: Assessment and Grading in the Differentiated Classroom) explains what most likely happened to my sister.
Report cards are supposed to share information about a child's progress in the classroom. Some think the traditional report card tells parents very little about what their child really knows. While some others prefer this method because of the familiarity or comfort level.
Many communities have already or are moving towards a Standards Based Report Card, but these can be confusing. Check out how one community explains the purpose and application of its Standard Based Report Card in this video.
Check out this student's thought's on Standards-based Grading!
Whichever, system is used, it is important to give feedback to our students and their parents about how they are progressing in school. Is there evidence of learning?
Do you have a favorite REPORT CARD MEMORY?
Leave it in the comment section!