Sunday, November 12, 2006

Grading and Replacing

I'f I've done my cutting and pasting on Friday (which, thankfully I did this week!) then Sunday afternoons find me "grading and replacing." I grade the previous week's work and replace it in their weekly binders with the current week's assignments. I've been trying to stay better about going through their work daily, so I've been having them pull their completed work out of their binders each day and put it in their bins, and then I grade them as I have make time during the week.

I have really enjoyed having grade sheets in Excel on my computer this year. If you become familiar at all with how to build a spreadsheet, the handy "sum" feature will put a formula in for you that will keep a running average of their grades. (In the younger grades I didn't worry about grades at all, but now with a middle schooler who's working more independently, I want to know how she's progressing and get her used to the feedback that grades provide. )

My system of binders has also helped with this process this year. I have all of their consumable books/ worktexts cut and 3-hole punched, then I store them in binders. (This is particularly useful with the 5th grade materials.) I pull the papers that will be assigned on a given week and put them in that section of the weekly notebook. I keep a small post-it note sticking out of the main binder so I'll know where we are in the book and where to replace the papers once they're done. After they've been completed and graded, back into the binder they go and the next week's worth is pulled.

I don't always get this done on Sunday. Sometimes I get up Monday and put them together. Since we've begun doing art on Mondays, I have found that I have time to put their new work in their notebooks while they're working on a project. If all else fails, there is plenty for them to do while they wait for me to "get it together" for them for the week- read their assigned reading, do their computer work (French and/or typing), or do work from one section while I assemble the others.

Whatever system you put in place, the key is to make it work for you, not the other way around!

Have a blessed week!

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