Reflection Chapter Four from The New Teacher Book

  1. In the story, My Dirty Little Secret: I don’t Grade Student Papers, I was taken back when I read that grades are the wages that students receive from their work. I have never thought about it in that before and it makes perfect sense. I know when I was in elementary and high school and now even university, my motivation for doing any sort of assignment was/is getting a good grade because grades have been stressed as important my entire life. What message does that give students if we solely focus on the grades? It makes a distinction between children who are “successful” and those who are “unsuccessful” when the fact of the matter is that all students have the capacity to learn and perform at high levels. Some children may get there faster then others but the overall learning does not change.
  2. Another takeaway from My Dirty Little Secret: I don’t Grade Student Papers was the mention on revision and how it is never done. Again, I never thought about once a student gets a mark back that it signifies that it is completed. The only time I have ever fixed an essay was when I received a failing grade in university because I misinterpreted the assignment and because my professor let me re-write it, I choose to do so. How many students are realistically going to resubmit a paper? Not many. Students choose a goal with what they want to get on an assignment and say “good enough” if the reach or surpass that goal which I know is something I am guilty of doing. Not to say that everything a student does should be at 100% but be at a place where they can look at their work and say, “I’m proud of this”.
  3. What’s Wrong with Standardized Tests? Made me realize that grading from teachers can be extremely biased. Psychology, teachers are more likely to give a student they like a higher grade over the one student that causes trouble all the time. Teacher have their favourite students and that is never to be known by them but teachers have to grade exams (if they choose to give them) by the content. A way around this bias could be by having the students put their names on the back page and when teachers grade the paper, the only look at the name of the student once the grade has been given. Teachers must be aware of their biases and check into them before entering the classroom.
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