Friday, November 3, 2017

Okay with an F


I was back in Mr. M's class. (This is getting to be a habit.) It was Friday, so they had a quiz.

It's a special ed. class, so their quizzes are open book. When they finished, if there was time, the instructional aide corrected their quizzes. If there was time, and if they didn't do so well on the quiz, the aide gave the quizzes back to the students to fix.

(They don't get full credit, however. They only get the full points if they got it right the first time.)

It was first period. The aide handed back a quiz to the first student to finish. And he was not pleased.

You should have seen him. He flailed about. Rolled his eyes. Cried. Threw his head towards his desk. From across the room I could see his performance.

Even more impressive, he did this all silently (as the rest of the class was still working on their quizzes).

Later, I talked to the aide. Apparently he always does this. You'd think he'd be more grateful with the help on getting a better grade.

In a following period (period 4, I think), I was the one correcting quizzes. I gave a boy back a quiz with a bunch of mistakes. I got busy with other things, so I didn't re-collect his quiz until the end of the period. That's when I saw he hadn't touched his quiz.

He got seven wrong. Out of twelve. That's more than half. I don't need a calculator to know that's less than 50% correct, so that's an F. I told him so.

"I'm fine with that grade."

Um, really? Even when I told him he didn't get half right?

It's a middle school thing, I think. I hope.

If you had failed a quiz, and your teacher gave you back your paper with the opportunity to fix your mistakes, would you fix your mistakes? (I know I would!)

22 comments:

  1. I was a total grade grubber. I would have studied like crazy the night before to make a 100 the first time if possible. Of course I would have done corrections if given the chance. In a heartbeat! I don't know if this attitude is the greatest though. In hindsight, focussing on learning over the grade might have served me better in the long run. Both of my girls are grade conscious, but my eighth grader doesn't study at home. Maybe that will change in high school.

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  2. Reading this post jogged my memory a bit. If you don't mind, I'd like to share:

    I started to really flounder, grade-wise, in my junior year of high school. I recall having been bumped from college prep English to, you'll forgive the term, 'bone head' English. We had a take-home writing assignment on a Steinbeck book & I flubbed it. I barely even started the assignment. I don't think I finished reading the book, to be honest.

    I recall writing a note to the teacher that I was embarrassed to not have completed the work. His written response included the words: Well, at least you spelled 'embarrassed' correctly.

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    1. Eeek. Good for your teacher at finding something positive. I hope you eventually turned it around.

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  3. I know I would have taken any opportunity to fix my mistakes back then. But of course these days I know how pointless middle school work is in the grand scheme of things.

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  4. Yes, I would totally fix the quiz. Especially if it is open book. In the grand scheme of things though I think many kids just don't seem to care all that much!

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    Replies
    1. It was a special ed. class. They have some of their own special challenges.

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  5. Was it special ed because the students have an impairment? I know that some students with Autism and Aspergers get VERY upset when they get things wrong. I really feel for them.

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    1. It's special ed. I don't know what impairments they may or may not have. But they're definitely not at grade level.

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  6. I was a motivated student, the kind that looks for extra credit, so yes, I would have fixed the quiz.

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    1. Of course, the motivated students weren't making all that many mistakes ;)

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  7. I have NO CLUE where kids come from these days....I have a grandson like that. He is just bidding his time till 18 I figure he will drop out then...It hurts to know this. I want him to open his eyes and see how life is, to see what he needs in life to make it. I want him to want more in his life for himself.....

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    1. Yeah, some of them just don't get it. How old is he? I find that some of the ones who you would least expect suddenly turn it around 'round about age 16/17.

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  8. I totally would, but this is a different generation. Along with home schooling, we have periodically used virtual school classes for one or two subjects. Part of the curriculum includes a 3 try approach. They can resubmit the assignment two times after the initial submission to try and get a better grade. Sometimes I love this. Sometimes I hate it. Because of the option, teachers will grade subjective assignments harder. Teachers who do this ALL THE TIME drive me insane. No one has time to do every assignment 3 times!

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  9. Reading Crystal's replay makes me even more happy I never had kids. I'd be thankful for an opportunity to do better, for sure. We never got that luxury.

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    1. They still don't, mostly. But this is special ed., so the kiddos get extra help. If only they'd take it...

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  10. Definitely. I can't even imagine how upset I'd have been if I got an F like that. I won't go too deeply into it because it will come off the wrong way, but I can say that the only 'F' I ever received was because of a head-butting match between my teacher and I for not showing my work on a math final (despite the entire final being correct).

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    1. Yeah, most people don't want Fs. And if you get the chance to fix it...

      As for the math final, as a math person, I totally get why you should have shown your work. *ducks*

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  11. I would have loved the extra help. *sigh* Kids.

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    1. But you probably didn't need it ;)

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  12. Boys always seem to react so differently than girls do. Maybe he doesn't see it as help? Maybe he just see's the corrections. Long ago I read how much a teacher could improve their relationship with students if they didn't circle mistakes in red. The color makes some kids....really see red. So, I wonder, could that be in play here?

    Traveling Suitcase

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    1. This is their routine, so I don't see how it would. It's interesting, though. That whole red thing is well-known amongst teachers, and they've asked the kiddos if the red bothers them. The kiddos generally claim it doesn't.

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  13. Think he could do with setting his standards a bit higher!

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