For the past year+ our school district has been looking into grading and assessment, how to make it an accurate reflection of learning. Initially, it was stressful and hard to accept. Now, it makes sense. To compensate for the grades that are no longer included – we will separately look at interpersonal skills and work skills (aka skills that are necessary to succeed in the real world.)
It was interesting to see a blog post on Report Card 2.0. It was focused on creativity, but many of the same characteristics are what we are actually looking for starting the 2nd marking period.
Now that the change in grading process will be changed in the so close in the future (only a week away) I am actively wondering if it will change students attitudes towards learning. Will they be motivated by the Excellent, Satisfactory, and Needs Improvement? Currently the minimum effort is the preferred performance level. Some students spend more time calculating which percentage of assignments they have to do to prevent their grade from falling to a ‘B’ – that much thought and they could have completed the assignment. It is not all students, but it is even more frustrating when the naturally gifted students do not want to waste their time with education. If the learning is easy, they could push themselves to achieve more and explore something that actually interests them. An independent learner could be such an asset to the class.
The first hurdle will be assessing the skills and keeping records, but I think it will be manageable using Google Docs. If I created a really short survey that I can type in events in the minute between classes, I would be able to remember/analyze the data on a weekly basis. Hmmm. More ideas to come later, but it will be a work in progress until I can develop the most efficient system.