Grades are meant to be representative of a child’s progress. If a student is doing well, they receive an A or B, 3’s or 4’s. Often overlooked is the actual measure of progress: feedback.
The first time I was introduced to the idea of ‘going gradeless’ I was intrigued. At that time I had been teaching for 12 years, and had recently taken a job as an instructional resource teacher at our school board. Colleagues of mine were working with a group of teachers who wanted to explore the … Continue reading De-emphasizing Grades in Secondary Science: A Shift in Perspective
Countless educators, including many in Teachers Going Gradeless, consider Ken O'Connor one of the first to introduce them to the idea that traditional grades are “broken” and that a better approach is possible.
Denver educator Julia E. Torres explores how going gradeless can serve the large context of equity, liberation, and student empowerment/autonomy.
My career in the classroom has inspired some classic teacher nightmares. In my dreams, I show up very late for the first day of school only to discover that my grade level has been switched. I ride the bus to school in my pajamas. (Actually, that was Spirit Week.) I teach a class of forty-three … Continue reading Motivation Matters
The maxim “If you can’t measure it, you can’t manage it” (often misattributed to Peter Drucker) sums up the continued belief in the necessity and power of accountability. A lack of accountability is seen as a sure path to lawlessness, indolence, and corruption. We don’t trust people who are unwilling, unprepared, or otherwise unable to … Continue reading It’s Time We Hold Accountability Accountable
Procrastination is such a dirty word. In our competitive, production minded society, procrastinating is a sin, but I have always been a procrastinator. There is something about waiting until the last minute that is alluring and exhilarating: the adrenaline rush, the caffeine binge, the loss of sleep. Despite all those thrilling benefits, I have rarely … Continue reading What Happened When I Procrastinated Giving Grades