Should Grades Be Tests Only?
Currently, my grade book consists of only quizzes and tests. I believe grades should reflect what knowledge of the content that students can show, not on behaviors such as turning things in on time or being prepared for class, etc.
I pretend to do SBG but really, my students do not reassess so I just have an SBG grade book.
So far this school year, I have only given quizzes. I'm teaching so slowly and I don't really know how to fix that.
This week I gave a quiz over reflections in Geometry. Out of 27 students, about 8 did well. I was unhappy with this. So I gave students a practice sheet to work through in class. Engagement was high since so many students wanted to improve their grades. Even students who only missed two wanted to retake it. After practicing, I gave a new version of the quiz. 100% of the students improved and quite a few made perfect scores.
At first, I was happy with this. I just did a whole class demonstration of SBG! Hooray! Improved scores! Learning! Yay!
But the more I thought about it...the unhappier I became. We practiced problems exactly like what was on the quiz....which I handed to them immediately afterward. That wasn't learning, it was memorization.
I started to think about quizzes. What am I measuring? Is it fair to work on a concept for a day or two and then score them on it? Do sports teams practice one or two days and then have a game? Are quizzes fair?
So then I started to think about not grading quizzes. I've been wanting to try some different methods anyway. 1) Student feedback quizzes. 2) Feedback only quizzes. 3) Stoplight stickers.
But what would happen to my grade book? I've been teaching for over a month and still have not given a test. If I did not give quizzes, my students would have no scores in the grade book at all. How could I compensate?
Maybe it is just my teaching to blame and quizzes are completely fine. Maybe I should let students used their INB for all assessments. Maybe I need to find a way to work with students one on one. Maybe I need to do a better job of formative assessment.
Maybe I need to do a better job with assessment, period.