Category Archives: not grading

An important reminder about why I am working to #StopGrading

I no longer put grades on individual pieces of student writing for a variety of reasons, but one of the most important ones surfaced this evening. I’m making my way through the first batch of my students’ thorough revisions. These … Continue reading

Posted in #StopGrading, assessment, blog series, fall 2016 blog series, feedback, grading, not grading, reflections | 2 Comments

Step Eight: Build your classroom community of writers to #StopGrading

I am one teacher in a room of thirty (or more) writers. They need copious amounts of feedback to grow, more than it is humanly possible for me to provide for them. But yet, we teachers of writing often feel … Continue reading

Posted in #StopGrading, balancing, blog series, fall 2016 blog series, feedback, grading, not grading, teaching writing, time, workshop teaching | Leave a comment

Step Seven: Start the #StopGrading conversation with parents

Back-to-school night was this past Wednesday, the evening where parents walk through their students’ schedules with ten minutes for each class. This is not enough time to tell them very much, especially if I want to leave time for a … Continue reading

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Step Six: Use conferences to focus on feedback instead of points to #StopGrading

When people find out I don’t put points or grades on individual pieces of writing, one of the first questions I get is what I do instead. I focus on feedback–as much as I can provide, and conferences are a key … Continue reading

Posted in #StopGrading, blog series, conferring, fall 2016 blog series, gradebook, grading, not grading, teaching reading, teaching writing, workshop teaching | Leave a comment

Step Five: Starting the #StopGrading Conversation with Students

“Is Alfie Kohn right or is his argument total crap?” So went the opening question for the Socratic seminar I planned for the first day of school Friday. Rather than reviewing a syllabus with my seniors, rather than doing any … Continue reading

Posted in #StopGrading, assessment, blog series, fall 2016 blog series, grading, making change, not grading, student feedback, teaching | 8 Comments

Step Four: Get Admin Behind Your Efforts to #StopGrading

It was fortunate that the moment I decided to stop grading, my assistant principal was sitting right next to me listening to Alfie Kohn make his case against grades in a conference presentation at NCTE in Boston in November of … Continue reading

Posted in #StopGrading, blog series, collaboration, colleagues, fall 2016 blog series, grading, making change, not grading, the system | Leave a comment

Step Three: Hack your gradebook to make it the data collection tool that will actually inform your instruction #StopGrading

I know you’ve had this conversation. We all have. You know, the one where a student asks you to round up a semester grade. You say no. No because you have a policy against rounding up grades. No because you … Continue reading

Posted in #StopGrading, assessment, blog series, fall 2016 blog series, gradebook, grading, hacking, not grading, planning | 6 Comments

Step Two: Design a classroom experience to keep your students working without points #StopGrading

Will students still do the work you assign if you don’t give them points for it? Yes–especially if the work is valuable to them. In the previous post in this series, I outlined what I thought it should mean for … Continue reading

Posted in #StopGrading, blog series, CCSS, fall 2016 blog series, grading, making change, not grading, workshop teaching | Leave a comment

It takes a village to #StopGrading

Okay people, a clever reader (you know who you are SRG) wondered in a comment on the first post in this series if we should have a shared folder or forum or something for people who are taking the gradeless … Continue reading

Posted in #StopGrading, blog series, collaboration, colleagues, fall 2016 blog series, grading, not grading | 1 Comment

Step One: What’s in a Grade? #StopGrading

For the purposes of keeping this post laser focused, I’m going to briefly describe a few things about how I’ve been going about grading for the last five semesters. I’m planning later posts on these things, but for now here’s … Continue reading

Posted in #StopGrading, assessment, blog series, fall 2016 blog series, grading, making change, not grading, planning | 2 Comments