Saturday, July 15, 2017

Standard based grading: the how (the policies)

What I'm thinking is that 80% of each student's grade will depend on standards. The other 20% will be homework, participation, projects, etc... To determine that 80%, each week I will be assessing two to six standards. Each question will be graded using a rubric I stole/adapted/edited from Dane Elhert.

Here's what it looks like:

(You can find a link to the document here.) As the rubric states, I will always take the highest grade and exempt students from future questions on a standard if they have scored two nines or higher. I will have students record their scores for each standard in their interactive notebook so they have a record of their progress. 

If a student wants to reassess a standard, I want to make time either during my planning period (their PE period) or after school so they have a second (or third or fourth) chance to show their understanding.  Here's the form they will need to fill out:

So, if a student has scored a 5, a 7, a 6, and finally a 9 on a standard, I will give them a 9 in the gradebook --- they have improved and I want to reward that.

What if scores go down instead of up? When I used this system on the collegiate level, I did adjust scores downward to reflect that a student was doing worse. However, doing that involves a more complicated policy that I believe would be more difficult for sixth graders to understand.

But you're not assessing retention of information! Yes, that's true. I would rather emphasize a growth mindset (if I improve, my grade clearly shows it) than a more punitive approach. There will be other instruments (for example, state testing) that will be a better measure of skills retention.

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