The Case for Standards-Based Grading

Seems like on most days when I hit social media, I’m bombarded by the same chatter—grades are “meaningless,” “don’t measure learning,” and “are corruptive.” And the comments don’t stop there. There’s negative chatter about all forms of grading practices, including standards-based grading.  While I agree that outdated and ineffective grading practices like using a 101 … Continue reading The Case for Standards-Based Grading

What story does your grade book tell?

***Updated with a video link at the bottom*** 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 … Continue reading What story does your grade book tell?

Popcorn attendance, learning opportunities, and mulligans: musings about teaching in a quarter system

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

Backwards design to survive our quarter course reality

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

The Report Card Dilemma

You’ve embraced a gradeless mindset. Your students are showing progress. It was a struggle at first, but you persevered in your communication of student learning to parents and they now appreciate that your focus has been on learning and not grades. Wahoo! Success! But it’s June and the Ministry of Education requires a letter grade … Continue reading The Report Card Dilemma

Choreographing Communication of Student Learning

As mentioned in my Teachers Going Gradeless post, communication of student learning is vital for gradeless and standards based grading to be successful. By communication, I mean communication of pivotal learning points in a student's learning journey:where they are at now and how to get to the next level. Communication should highlight the growth and … Continue reading Choreographing Communication of Student Learning