Kids really bombed the quiz…

Dear Mathies,

So, teaching logs, and missing two days last week, I gave a quiz to see where the kids are. I’m feeling pressured, because of the February break, to get a test in next week. It’s also the end of the grading period that Friday before the break. So, I’m feeling like a quiz is needed to let me and the kids know where we are this week.

Well, it seems like we’re overall pretty far from where we’d like to be. 🙂

So, do I labor through the grading, or do I hand them back without grading them, and allow them to work through them again? Do I worry about cheating, grade inflation, lack of “data” for issuing the grade for the reporting period? Yeah, I do worry about all that. I also worry about their stress level, because I want them to like math and math class. And, logs are not one of the easier Algebra 2 topics. They will learn more if they enjoy themselves and aren’t experiencing ‘stress-brain.’ But, I could feel the tension in the room as they we reviewed for the quiz and as they took the quiz.

So, I want to get creative. I want them to get the feedback they need, without the low score. So, I’m thinking that I will give them the quiz back today and let them correct them with a pen. Then, if they want to turn it in or retake it, they can decide. So, there’s still some accountability and they have a bit less anxiety and a bit more control.

My questions for you are:

  1. What do you think of this idea?
  2. Do you have a better idea?
  3. How have you handled these conflicting pressures around assessment?
  4. What else should I be thinking about? What am I missing here?

If you can give me feedback on any of these things, I’d appreciate it!

Here’s what happened: I did the above, and many want to retake, but many kept their score. They got some feedback, for sure. However, I didn’t let them keep the quizzes. So, some asked, “How will I study for the re-take?” Great question…

I’m going to send a couple of tutorial links (via Remind and put links on my website) and have them review their assignments to ‘study’. I hope this will help them learn how to study, too. Maybe we’ll focus on that some more, too. Regularly.



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