Edtech in the Gradeless Classroom: Google Keep

"To one with a hammer, everything looks like a nail." This adage reveals the power tools have to shape our perceptions. What does this mean for the tools we use in the classroom? If using a hammer pushes me to see nails wherever I look, how is the grade book software on my computer influencing … Continue reading Edtech in the Gradeless Classroom: Google Keep

Now’s the Time For You to Shine

Summer sat across from me, apologizing. “I had to change my goals a little.” I smiled, delighted to hear that she had been reflecting on her goals, and urged her to continue talking. “I had intended to write a short story and work on character development,” Summer continued, “But I decided to focus more on … Continue reading Now’s the Time For You to Shine

Now’s the Time to Spark a Conversation

This past week, I had the honor of hosting our second chat on “Getting Started.” I thought that participating in the previous #TG2Chat (Aaron Blackwelder moderating) was intense. Taking on the mantle of moderator notched it up to a whole new level. It was also a blessedly busy week of blog posts about going gradeless: … Continue reading Now’s the Time to Spark a Conversation

Using Self-assessment Letters for a Conversational Evaluation

Breaking the monopoly of evaluation In the interest of supporting the autonomy of our students, we should seek every opportunity to place students "behind the wheel" of their own learning (see Ike Shibley's "Putting Students in the Driver Seat"). This issue becomes particularly sensitive when it comes to evaluation. We know what a powerful learning … Continue reading Using Self-assessment Letters for a Conversational Evaluation

The Limits of Community and the Future of Going Gradeless

This is the second in a series of posts exploring teaching and learning in the de-graded and de-tested language arts classroom. Read the first post here.  Teaching can be a lonely profession. Even though I come into contact with 120 people every day, most of the interactions are asynchronous. The relationships I have with my … Continue reading The Limits of Community and the Future of Going Gradeless

Explode These Feedback Myths and Get Your Life Back

When asked what recommendations they would give teachers to improve feedback…students claimed to want more, and more useful, responses to their writing. A wide majority — 87% — rated as “important” or “very important” the advice that teachers give more detailed feedback on papers. — Harvard Study of Undergraduate Writing That’ll do, Harvard Study of Undergraduate Writing, that’ll do. I … Continue reading Explode These Feedback Myths and Get Your Life Back

Hate the Game, Not the Gamers

Recently, I have been following a conversation on Twitter about why certain assessment methods are better than others (see Aaron Blackwelder’s post about cheating). One of the ideas coming out of this conversation is that educators can gauge a method’s effectiveness by whether it can be ‘gamed’ by students. Wikipedia defines gaming as using the rules … Continue reading Hate the Game, Not the Gamers