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A testy week

It's been a week of testing in my classes. All of them. Formatives (glorified practice) and Summatives (the ones that really count). I've been spending A LOT of time grading tests in front of my TV at night.

Some high points:

  • I like the IB system of having formal formative assessments. It forces me to give detailed personalized feedback to students before they take their the test that counts (summative).

  • I feel like I've had some major successes with a few dedicated students. Many have been taking advantage of after school office hours to get extra help. It makes a big difference.

  • I like the middle school (MYP-middle years program) assessment requirements. We must give formal summative assessments that cover four categories during a semester. A-knowledge, B-patterns, C-communication, and D- real life application. The A assessments are straight forward tests. The other three generally involve a project of some sort. These give students a chance to demonstrate their learning in other ways. But yeah, it takes a lot longer to grade.

Some low points:

  • I'm burned out from grading and providing feedback.

  • I had a student cheat on a test and it really hurts on a couple levels. This student was one of my favorites. It happened on my watch in a class. They accessed a phone app called PhotoMath. It will solve just about any equation including advanced calculus. I had to go through the process of involving the administration and parents. It was a senior in the middle of the process of college applications. This is now on their record. We had a long talk after school. I told them several times the same thing. We all make mistakes. Sometimes big ones. They don't have to define us. I told them about many of the big mistakes I've made. Lots of tears. Both of us. I care about the kid and want to them to believe me that I'm disappointed in them but I still care.

  • I'm about to be blasted with extra responsibility. Golf and basketball coaching is about to spin into full go. Hoops on Monday Wednesday Friday. Golf on Thursday. I get Tuesday free. Dang.

Trivia night tonight with friends. We got fourth place out of a bunch of teams. Good times.

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