So as teachers we need to teach our tiny humans to learn our content area, control their behaviors, use their manners, be kind to others, be all around good people, take standardized test, pass standardized tests, give them grades, make individualized plans, track data and at the end of the day we still have to grade them on their participation. It has been said that teachers make more decisions every minute than surgeons, no wonder we cant remember if Jonny raised his hand at least three times during science and asked appropriate questions!
So in an attempt to alleviate at least one of your burdens I have come up with a system that I have used steadily for the past two years. Now lets just say participation is the easiest grade for me to track in my grade book! I have come up with a 0, 1, 2 system for participation.
The way it works is if a student participates in the lesson and can work without you holding his hand the whole way through it, they get a 2 for participation. If they need constant redirection and you have to hand hold the entire way, then they get a 1 for participation. Finally if they do nothing or refuse, they get a 0 for participation. I have these things labeled in my classroom for the students to see, and I also have a tracking sheet (both can be previewed and purchased for $1.00 in my Teachers pay Teachers store Waldron’s Wonders).
This can be put in your grade book in many different ways, but the two that I have used are; putting in a grade each week out of 10 possible points or putting in one grade at the end of the quarter equaling 100 possible points. This year I am going to try putting 50 points at five week progress reports and 50 points at the end of the quarter.
I work with Special Education students so participation is a very important part of their grade. It normally boosts their grade and I like to show them that their hard work is helping! It is a great way also to motivate students who do not do much in class; they can see what a bad vs. good participation grade can do for them!
I hope that this method makes tracking participation easier for you…. Now onto simplifying the other ninety-seven million things we do in a day!