Monday, October 15, 2012

Yellow to Green

My grading scheme this year for AP Physics (C: Mechanics) has, so far, worked out the best that I've had for that course. My physics/honors physics scheme involves (basically) one or two standards per model, so the standards are fairly coarse. The problems are easy (enough) to generate, and reassessment at more frequent intervals is good for reinforcement, practice, and experience for those first-time learners. Applying that to the AP course in the past has been problematic, given the headaches of senior scheduling and senior motivation. It's also another group of reassessments for me to prepare, schedule, and grade. I posted about this before, but I've made a few tweaks and it's started to actually get used.

Here's my scheme this year:

  • The standards are more grainy (see the list here), compared to honors physics (here)
  • There are (generally) two assessments per unit in class
  • There's one reassessment available per unit, covering the whole unit
  • I made a chart showing the acceptable evidence for each standard. Typically, it'll be two strong showings in assessments/reassessments for that standard or one strong showing and several out-of-class successes (problems) or a capstone or several out-of-class successes and a capstone
  • Everyone's required to do at least one capstone per term, even if you rocked all of your assessments
  • Students submit this slip when they have some evidence to show for a standard.  There may be some revision needed before it's accepted.
The extra outside effort needed to find and do problems and/or capstones motivates them to do good work on assessments, without me needing to wade through another sea of reassessments.  The capstones are my favorite part, and they're coming up with some great ones (more on those as they mature).  Overall, I'm liking the balance between giving them flexibility with their busy senior lives, keeping them accountable, and respecting the fact that, even though there aren't so many grades 'in the book' right now, they're still working.

Today's a big day, because the first student went from yellow (NY: "not yet") to green (P: "Proficient").  Many more to come of those, as well.

1 comment:

  1. Aw, what a great moment! :)

    You *never* get that kind of feeling from your gradebook with old-fashioned grades. Your students all start at 100% and go *down* from there. This really illuminates a benefit of SBG. Thanks!