1. This site uses cookies. By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. Learn More.
  2. Hi Guest, welcome to the TES Community!

    Connect with like-minded education professionals and have your say on the issues that matter to you.

    Don't forget to look at the how to guide.

    Dismiss Notice

Graded Success Criteria- in action

Discussion in 'Assessment' started by af00094676, Jul 18, 2012.

  1. Hi
    I know there are posts on here already regarding Graded Success Criteria however after reading these, my question has still not been answered.
    When using Graded Success criteria and you have say the three sets ie 1-must, 2-should, 3-could, do the children choose where they start ie they choose to start at the number 2 outcomes and if able to show success move onto 3 or do they have to start at 1 and progressively work through? Also how does this work with time constraints within one lesson. I hope this makes sense to those of you who use graded success criteria.
    Any help would be appreciated.
    Thanks
    P
     
  2. Hi
    I know there are posts on here already regarding Graded Success Criteria however after reading these, my question has still not been answered.
    When using Graded Success criteria and you have say the three sets ie 1-must, 2-should, 3-could, do the children choose where they start ie they choose to start at the number 2 outcomes and if able to show success move onto 3 or do they have to start at 1 and progressively work through? Also how does this work with time constraints within one lesson. I hope this makes sense to those of you who use graded success criteria.
    Any help would be appreciated.
    Thanks
    P
     
  3. IMO children should never be made to go through the motions of easier work in order to earn the right to move onto the more interesting stuff - the task should be pitched at an appropriately challenging level for them from the beginning, with opportunities to deepen/extend their learning as they progress. Obviously this is easier said than done, but as I see it, there are two choices: you either guide children towards the level of challenge that you think is appropriate for them, or you let them choose this for themselves. The danger of the former approach is that you risk underestimating what they are capable of (as well as taking away from them a potential source of ownership of their learning); the danger of the latter, as in the second post here, is that that children may not always choose for themselves the level of challenge that is most appropriate. If children are consistently choosing tasks that are too easy for them, however, then I think there is something wrong with the way in which they perceive the whole idea of "challenge", and this issue would need to be addressed before a choice-based system like this could have any chance of being effective.


    The problem here may be something to do with language: I don't like the terminology of "must", "should", and "could", as I think it introduces an unhelpful distinction between learning that is compulsory and learning that is optional (and when framed like this, it's hardly surprising that children should opt only for work that they are told that they "must" do). More useful, I think, is the idea of success criteria as different "levels" of challenge - not so much as in National Curriculum levels, but as in the kind of levels you have in a computer game (see recent ideas about the "gamification" of learning - why is it that children find computer games so motivating, and how can use some of these principles? Clear objectives/gradually increasing challenge/immediate feedback etc). So level A might require x and y, level B might require x, y and z, and so on.
    However you frame it, the critical factor is surely that children must WANT to challenge themselves to reach the next level, and the idea of doing so needs to be valued by both teacher and peers, with this value constantly reinforced. If children do not see the point of challenging themselves, and would rather choose the easy option when given a chance (whether this is through lack of confidence/fear of failure, or wanting to avoid effort), then I think this is a significant barrier to their achievement that goes much deeper than the issue of graded success criteria, and which needs to be unpicked and dealt with before anything else.
     
  4. Thanks for the detailed reply. I have a few questions:
    I am assuming that you use this approach consistently and that you have found that it works for you. Could I just check that you are in the UK state secondary sector, in a non selective environment.Also if it is a mixed gender school, do you find that boys like this approach more than girls?
    Any more info would be good, e.g. how long you've used it for, is it more successful with different key stages etc.
    Thanks
    Bougalou
     
  5. I have used this kind of approach in my maths lessons for years, after having a particularly challenging group. ("Why do I have to do the harder work? I want the easy sheet, Miss!" including all the whining and temper tantrums one would expect from a four-year-old. They were 9 and 10, by the way. Utterly ridiculous.) So they got to choose their independent tasks, clearly labelled as "easy", "ok" and "challenge". They also got to work with their mates, unless they particularly annoyed me or insisted on messing about.
    It has worked well for all of the other groups I have had, as well. Yes, they start off going for the easy stuff, but I make a big deal out of them being responsible for their learning and their progress. It takes most groups about 4 weeks until the majority begin to develop quite a sense of pride in their achievement, having completed the challenging tasks and done so rather well. They get praise for trying and for effort, not just for getting stuff right. Being able to work with their friends also helps them, because especially my boys tend to challenge each other to go for the harder work. They do work together and that means even my weaker kids will cover more challenging work than they would have done had I limited them to the MUST task. My girls find security in working with their friends and having the chance to discuss problems with one another.
    The approach helps them to develop confidence in an area a lot of the pupils I get struggle in. Instead of the whining, I actually get: "Miss, I did the hard task...and it was pips!" or " Miss, my target is a 3a, isn't it? I've just done the 4b task!", delivered with a beaming smile.
    Key for mine is that they are always allowed to change tasks. If it is too easy, they can move to the harder task. If it's a bit too tricky, they can go to the easier one. It all depends on how secure they feel with that particular concept. They decide how hard they try, they directly influence the progress they are making. If they don't bother, they don't get better. I do, however, also tell them if they haven't tried and let themselves down. And I can be mighty scary and depressing, if I feel the need to be.
    Funnily enough, most of mine love maths by the end of the year and have generally made above average progress. But then, I love teaching maths and usually have a great bunch of kids to work with.
     
  6. Sounds good! Teenagers on the other hand I think may react rather differently, but I am going to give it another shot.

     
  7. Well, they might react differently. Depends on the kids you are talking about and the general ethos of the school you are teaching in. I push mine to want to do well (because I'm a right grumpy cow, if they don't, and have no patience or sympathy for lazy children whatsoever).
    However, when I was a kid, I've always attended schools that put the main responsibility for learning on the pupil himself, not on anyone else. I can't quite understand the British obsession with holding teachers responsible for pupil progress. The saying about leading a horse to water comes to mind,...

     

Share This Page