Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Grade Thermometer

I haven't updated in a while and will be doing a larger update later this week. However I wanted to share this. My students struggle to understand the concept of Mastery Based Grading. They get it...sort of. They understand they have to master things at 80% or better, they understand that they have to master all the units for the term to get an "A" and yet they still ask "What's my average?" or "Am I getting an A?." I've had a hard time reminding them that since its based on what they master by the end of the term, their grade is constantly changing. I also wish I didn't have to grade them at all, or that they weren't so obsessed with "grades." I really just care that they are engaged and learning.

I have check lists for them to keep up with their work and they can keep track of their "grade" that way, but I realized that maybe a more visual way for them to see progress towards an "A" might not only be clearer but a motivator so I came up with the following:

I took the units for the Term and divided them along a thermometer. I then put in the "grades" for where they would master a unit. This way they can color it in as they progress and see what their grade is. I realize some of my flipped class colleagues will not like this as it puts emphasis back on the "grade game" the idea that its "all about the grade." However I felt like I had to meet them half way, I'm expecting them to change a lot of how they think of school and grades, I guess I can give them a little of the "point game" back (but only a little)!

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