We’re in the midst of All Quiet on the Western Front now. I have assigned groups of students a different group of chapters. Each group is responsible to give and grade a reading quiz, and to prepare vocabulary, pertinent quotes, and interpretive questions for their chapters. They also lead a discussion in class.
Today during lunch, a group was huddled at a table in my room going over the quizzes they gave the day before. The group was trying to be consistent in their grading.
NW: Give him the 5 points.
WC: Why should I do that? He didn’t get it right.
NW: Yes, but his score is really bad and maybe we can give him the benefit of the doubt. Isn’t he your friend? I’m not his friend and I still feel sorry for him.
WC: I do feel bad for him but it doesn’t mean I can’t be professional about it. You don’t grade quizzes on a curve relative to their own answers.
SP: Then why don’t we just give them all three of our scores? A score from each of us.
WC: C’mon we can do better than that. You get it right or you don’t. You can even get it sorta right which is worth some points. But you can’t be so random about it. If you give someone a grade higher than they deserve then how will I ever be able to trust my own grades?
SP: BT has a 51%. I have gone over her quiz three times. I don’t see any way to raise her grade.
WC: How is raising her grade helping her ? Give her what she deserves. She deserves the 51%.
SP: Can you read this? Yo? Yell? Ugh. It’s only a couple of words and I have spent like 10 minutes trying to read this handwriting.
NW: Just mark it wrong.
WC: This is a reading quiz. It’s to see if students read or understood the reading assignment. Not to make anyone feel good.
SP: This is really, really hard to do.
From the mouths of babes.