October 17, 2014

Live Grading Success

Any English teacher knows that grading essays is time-consuming, mentally exhausting, and frustrating. It also takes up your home life time...what little of that you have...because you have to take the essays home to grade because there's no way you can do it at school AND grade the homework too!

I don't have a solution, but I have a different approach. A few months ago at a department meeting, we were talking about grading and how feedback is important, etc. I don't remember who brought up the idea or if they had done it, but the great idea of live feedback entered the discussion.

The only way this will work though, is if you can trust your students to do independent work for a whole week. I had rearranged by units this year, and somehow ended up with an extra week...still don't understand. So this provided the perfect opportunity to do live grading, and still have the grades turned in in time for the grading period [Quarter 1 ends next week].

So while I am pulling students over one at a time and grading their essay in front of them, the kids are analyzing articles using a worksheet I adapted regarding the Four Fundamental Ways We Relate to Text. The texts I am having them analyze are from the Common Core Appendix B exemplars.
Here's the worksheet...it's double sided.

The live grading has gone surprisingly VERY well. The kids are seeing what it's like for me to grade their essays and see EVERY little mistake they make. I've had so many kids notice the errors before I mark them...it's awesome! This is also a plus for me because they can't just look at the grade and be upset--they logically understand their grade. I've had no complaints, no arguments about the grade, and kids have been telling me it's "really cool" and "really helpful".

Unfortunately, I don't have time to do this with their next essay, but I think doing it with this first one will help make sure their next paper is done correctly. They were engaged in the grading process and I truly believe this will transfer over to their next writing assignment.

Hope this helps everyone! Have a great weekend!

6 comments:

  1. This sounds amazing!! I might be able to use this in my U.S. History class as well! :) I saw something on the Teaching Channel where the teacher (Sarah Brown Wessling) and she recorded her evaluation of the essay and sent it to the students as a podcast. She would number the problem areas and then record her thoughts. Basically, she could say a whole lot more than she could write in a whole lot less time. That might be a "semi" live grading approach! :)

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    1. Some of our teachers tried that this year...they said it was a LOT of work and some of the students didn't even listen to it. At least this way I know they're hearing it :) But if that works for her, then awesome! It's always fun hearing new ideas! Thanks for commenting! :)

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    2. I was actually wondering about the time it would take to record, upload and send the podcasts out. :/ I think I might try your live grading idea...I really like the one on one approach!

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    3. Totally...the live grading the recording process probably take the same amount of time, but then with the recording, you have to upload them, and then separate them and email them to the students. And even then you don't know if they listen to it unless they write some sort of reflection. I must say, it felt great to not bring any essays home! :)

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  2. What a fantastic idea! I think this would help my students so much with understanding our school rubric (my school has one writing rubric that the all subject areas follow for writing tasks).

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    1. It was a really good way for them to see me mark on the paper and then the corresponding rubric; they definitely understood it better!:)
      Stephanie

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