Five weeks is up, and grades are due for progress reports. All I’ve heard this week is shouts of “hey, what’s my grade in your class?!?!” I get accosted in the hallway, in my classroom while I’m teaching a lesson, during lunch, etc. I’ve tried to explain to students this is not only an unprofessional way to go about discussing their grade with me, but they should come talk with me either before or after school. Regardless, they should not be late to a different class because they were trying to talk to me on the fly about what they are missing and what the proper recourse is.
So I keep asking myself, how can we get students to start thinking about their grades from day 1? Many of the concerns they have over their grades would not exist if the first week had included turning in their homework. Why is it that most students have a reactive way of approaching their grades, as opposed to being proactive? I’m sure part of the reason is that they do not completely understand that starting off on the wrong foot makes it hard to pull a grade up.
Conversely, there are students that have done a wonderful job since day 1. This makes me wonder why they do not always have an effect on their friends’ ability to perform in the classroom. Obviously, each student is an individual with different personalities, but I would hope that all students understand the nature of their grades, and the importance they carry throughout their high school careers.
There are always going to be students that struggle to get all their work in, but I ask myself, how can I limit that? How can I get all students on board with not only showing up ready to go, but prepared to turn in all work?