Each end of the marking period finds me playing defense. I have to be able to explain why certain students don’t make the grade in my class. I write a list and send it to the parents and guardians whose progeny is now on Santa’s Naughty List. Let’s run down a few, shall we?
- Low test grades – Junior didn’t study. Oh, he had baseball/soccer/hockey practice for three hours? Hmmm…. 🤔
- Low quiz grade – Juniorette didn’t study. I sent both parents and students flash cards at least the night before the quiz, and she had dance/gymnastics/volleyball club practice for three hours? 🤔
- Low project grade – Junior didn’t turn it in on time, completed, or at all. A conference to discuss your disgust with my grading policies or to decide if my parents “raised me right” is not appropriate at this time. 🤦🏽♀️
- I can’t grade air. Good intentions to do the work or bad intentions of not doing the work ever merit the same result. When I receive zero work, I have to write zero for the grade. If I read minds and saw the “good intentions” of my students, then I should be using my allegedly psychic abilities for some other purposes. Like knowing the winning lottery numbers for the next three years.💲💲💲💲💲
- Angie Apathetic didn’t attend tutorials like you said she would. Two or three days per week was our agreement, and the little darling sits in the cafeteria/gym/foyer on her phone playing games instead of coming in to ask questions.🤷🏽♀️
- But-But-But Bert turns it in. Late. After grades are submitted. Past the eleventh hour. No can do, kiddo.💃🏽 Did he listen to me when it was due one month prior? Nope. Bye-bye, Bert.
- Startled Stella cannot believe I won’t accept her assignment. “Is it on Google Classroom, like I asked?” “No.” “Did you flood my inbox with items that I have to wade through my Google Drive to retrieve?” Silence. “Well, Stella, I think you’d better do it the way I said because I am not in the mood to play a rousing game of ‘Hunt the Email’ today.” Note: this is said while I maintain the Shark smile on my face. Behind my black-rimmed spectacles, the corners of my eyes don’t crinkle but my lips rise at the corners. I look like I might actually bite if she does not start typing on that little Chromebook quick, fast, and in a hurry. Because Stella is a bright lass, she complies . Game. Over.