Wednesday, March 23, 2016

Accountability & Standards

One of the ways I'm trying to remediate students' work not meeting standards is by having students write letters to their parents. Although this feels punitive to the students, what I am attempting to offer them is a reflective and educational experience.

Honestly, I'm not shooting for perfection in myself or my students. I would, however, like to see some motivation, some academic growth, and some sense of responsibility or accountability in my students. 

I shared my letter with guidelines to the students, school-wide, today (March 23), so that my students in your studylabs could be reminded that they can be working on it.

I'm just wrapping up attempt #1, and the results to date, are observational and interesting:

  1. My students are not pleased about missing the movie of Romeo and Juliet, while their peers who did meet performance indicators are enjoying it.
  2. My detailed directions force, I mean GUIDE, guide students into writing a reflective letter that requires they look at the work, the performance indicators, and their responsibilities in not meeting those performance indicators. 
  3. Students must revisit all the documents I shared with them in Gclassroom to find the information they did not pay attention to the first time. They really DO need to read and follow directions. 
  4. My colleagues are extremely supportive of students and colleagues! Some have emailed me, or sent students to me, so that our mutual students can work in studylabs on the mandatory letter. 
  5. Some of the questions my students have asked me as they work on their letters are disheartening for me: they clearly missed important information. A few of them missed the whole point to SSR...the insertion of the reader to make meaning by questioning, connecting, and observing. Some students still do not care. 
  6. Through my students' letters, I can see some of the weaknesses in my planning, and have made notes about different ways to organize for next time.
  7. Parents are drawn into the work of their students' letters, and receive an explanation FROM THE STUDENT for a failing grade.  
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