Mr. Kibblewhite and I have just finished reading over three hundred second term reports cards. Teachers spend hours writing these reports, choosing words carefully, wanting to be kind but honest in how they describe students’ progress and areas for further growth.
It is hard to put a child’s full learning profile into words, especially on only one page. And we also are beginning to wonder if a letter grade can accurately represent what a child knows and can do. Many schools across our province are piloting a new way of communicating student learning, that is on-going and frequent, rather than a three-times a year event.
Some teachers are using Twitter, some a program like Fresh Grade, to send parents and anecdotes about their child: projects, speeches, art work, activities, daily writing, responses to reading, participation in games, and so on. I know that I would have loved to be a fly on the wall in my children’s classrooms! As a single, working parent, it was hard to be in the school on a regular basis, and the answer to, “What did you do in school today?” was not always very satisfying.
Let us know what you think? Are you getting the information you would like from our report cards? Do you find the comments (and the letter grades in grades 4 to 7) give you sufficient information? Would you like to see examples of work that is “meeting expectations” in order to see what the “widely held expectations” are? We’d love to have a conversation.