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Does anyone grade every piece of writing for year 10s/11s?

Discussion in 'English' started by Malu, Feb 6, 2011.

  1. My year 10s are unspeakable - their mock results were dire - at least two grades below their targets - and they have no work ethic at all. Aside from seriously considering resigning - I quite obviously can't teach for toffee - I'm wondering about giving every piece of writing they do a grade based on the official criteria - in the hopes that it might give them a bit of motivation. They won't peer mark (they just can't do it), they won't work in groups. Most of them won't work full stop. This will give me a lot of work - but will it help?
    Does anyone out there give an official mark for every piece of writing?
     
  2. My year 10s are unspeakable - their mock results were dire - at least two grades below their targets - and they have no work ethic at all. Aside from seriously considering resigning - I quite obviously can't teach for toffee - I'm wondering about giving every piece of writing they do a grade based on the official criteria - in the hopes that it might give them a bit of motivation. They won't peer mark (they just can't do it), they won't work in groups. Most of them won't work full stop. This will give me a lot of work - but will it help?
    Does anyone out there give an official mark for every piece of writing?
     
  3. GloriaSunshine

    GloriaSunshine New commenter

    No - I don't have time.
    In fact, y10 do very little written work apart from preparing for the CAs, and even then, it's mostly paragraphs that they improve or develop. No mocks either! Ours have taken their CAs seriously and we've graded them but nothing else.
     
  4. sunflower48

    sunflower48 New commenter

    I do not give a grade or mark unless controlled assessment. However, I do feed back on short paragraph work in class. I think if your class are poor with attitude, effort and work ethic I would be looking to address this first. Give them strict time limits to finish things in class. If not done, back at lunch to finish, if not done then detention after school. Most importantly ring parents and tell them you are unhappy with their child. Work on changing their work ethic etc then begin to teach them how to peer assess and work together. Don't assume that you marking every piece will change their attitude, it won't, and you will be exhausted and completely deflated by the whole process. Be proactive in changing their attitude first. Good luck.
     
  5. Sounds like they need a massive kick up the backside. Repeatedly shouting "YOU GOT A D, YOU ***!" isn't going to help matters much, though, which is effectively what grading everything they produce will do. Their terrible mock grades haven't given them any motivation, so why should rubbing their noses in more poor grades improve their attitude? That's the problem here - their attitude. I recommend getting parents on side - some letters/phonecalls home, getting their head of year or the head of department in to deliver a rollicking, plus some incentives (if you're feeling kind) - rewards each lesson for effort and so on. It's interesting they won't peer mark - why not? Could you simplify descriptors for them? Maybe you need a few lessons where you go right back to basics with them - could help. Good luck with the little blighters.
     
  6. markuss

    markuss Occasional commenter

    Hi, Malu, do sympathise - I've had plenty like that in my time.
    Regarding: "I'm wondering about giving every piece of writing they do a grade based on the official criteria".
    Yes, I know. You look at a piece of "work" and think that if they carry on like that they'll get an "E" when their target's a "C". The official criteria don't fit single pieces of work, though, do they?
    Suggest you use your own grading - maybe from "A" = "WOW, you've done far better than I thought possible" through "E" = "this is something like" to "X" = "thanks for writing something, anyway".
    But, whatever, don't give up on yourself, even if, at some point or at all points, you want to give up on them! They won't all be like that. Promise!
     
  7. sleepyhead

    sleepyhead New commenter

    Yep. That's my class.
    YIKES!! How much marking can you really do? We have 4 lessons a week with year 10 - in the last 4, mine have done at least 20 mins writing per lesson. There are 36 of them. There is no way that I could mark that much and be a)effective b) alive.
    Instead, today, I gave them the success criteria before they started (it was a list of language features that they should include in persuasive writing) and then they wrote, and then they marked each feature in their writing with a different colour so that they could see what was what. Most of them got one or two; some did a bit better. It took them 5 mins to do that; it would have taken me at least 3 hours to mark them and give them the same feedback that they got from self-assessment.
    How are you getting them to do this? Mine can't (yet) cope with the mark scheme, although they are getting there. I find that if I give them really clear things to look for, they're much better - and then I just need to check their "marking" rather than doing it all.
    Mine sit in groups - yes, I have a primary school layout- and this does seem to help. Or just try pairs.
    Is there a dept/school sanction for this??
    Probably not, especially if they're not really bothered anyway. Or if, like one of mine, you feel that you're not getting better. We've done 3 CAs and two different lots of exam stuff, and she's never met her target yet. She feels like she can't meet it, and doesn't understand that it's partly because our stupid scheme of work is so bitty that they never get to grips with one thing before they have to move on to the next thing.
    So, the answer from me is "no". I think They would like us to, but there's no way I have time and feedback is more useful than a grade anyway. Oh, and it's currently school policy NOT to grade their work.





     
  8. Thank-you so much to all who replied. Although I am reasonably experienced, this is my first year in a new school and I feel like an NQT with both my year 10 groups. I am going to have to simplify the assessment criteria, set up some better, more immediate rewards (lollies) and go back to basics. Oh, AND get another CA done in the next three weeks.

    no rest for the wicked.
    Thanks again.
     

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