Since I began working with my Secondary Assessment Learning Team (SALT) at my school, I've attempted to tackle numerous projects, but none has been more significant and problematic than my grade book. Since going officially gradeless (feedback only with students, no levels, no points, no scores, no percentages...until interim and report card time), three years … Continue reading What story does your grade book tell?
For the first month of quarter one, I saw approximately 50% of my English 8 students. No joke. I’d take attendance and hit an equal number of Absent as I did Present into Myed. After putting my heart and soul into planning a quarter and being stoked to be back in the classroom face to … Continue reading Popcorn attendance, learning opportunities, and mulligans: musings about teaching in a quarter system
Recently, the Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences raised eyebrows for implementing new diversity rules that insist that in order to be eligible for an Oscar, films need to meet inclusion standards both on camera and behind the scenes. Their point is to increase the representation of underrepresented racial or ethnic groups, LGBTQ persons, … Continue reading Presume Competence
Quarters. Copernican. Ten weeks. These are the words many high school teachers across British Columbia have heard in the last few weeks instilling intrigue, fear, and anxiousness for the new school year. Sure, it’s the same number of teaching minutes, but it’s not so easy to just double the lessons and call it a day. … Continue reading Backwards design to survive our quarter course reality
It seems like every other day, I am asked how I can reconcile myself to the fact that I still have to give grades at report card time and run a gradeless classroom. It’s a complex question and there’s an equally complex answer. Let me first make a comment…gradeless is amazing! It’s the single most … Continue reading What does a B mean anyways?
There is a solo project I do with my Drama students. I have them pretend they are a small child trying to fly a kite on a windless day. I tell the actors that despite all odds, their character should never give up. Here is what the actors show me. At first, the child is … Continue reading Let’s Go Fly a Kite
Click on the picture to check out my article in BC Teacher Magazine.
For high school teachers, there’s been a lot of questions around learning and assessment and what we should be doingduring this pandemic. How much work should we give? Should we give everyone A’s? What if kids don't have computers? Should kids fail? What if kids are alone? Should they pass or pass with distinction? Should … Continue reading Throw ’em a life preserver
The Trouble with Technology I rely heavily on my social network for resources to communicate my assessment philosophy and education pedagogy. During this crisis, I find myself inundated with so much information that I find it a daunting task to weed out the unnecessary, trolls, and funnies to get to important information for my PLN … Continue reading Thinking outside the ‘tech’ box
I’m an extrovert. No wait, I’m not just an extrovert. I am a certifiable, put me in the spotlight, please give me attention, extrovert. That's more accurate. Extroverts, in case you don’t know, are completely aware of their cravings for attention and are far from obtuse about it. I have no issues telling someone I’m … Continue reading An Extrovert in Isolation