So this is my first slice. It’s a little nerve-wracking to put my writing “out there” for more than just my students. It took me a few years to get used to writing in front of them, so I’m giving myself some time to get used to writing for you. (I think I’ll try a month….). : )
This is progress report time, which is always overwhelming for me. Since I started teaching over 30 years ago, I spend so much time collecting data, examining it, creating new data points, giving those…. Wash, rinse, & repeat! Why?
I believe I do this for a few reasons. One is that I don’t “trust my gut”. I know which kids struggle and which succeed. I know which kids have met the marking period standard. And yet, I sat for almost 7 hours today reaffirming “my gut”. Luckily we no longer use letter grades in elementary, so that does make it feel better. I hated when my students would earn Bs, Cs or worse. When I was a second grade teacher, using letter grades felt so harsh. I don’t think I would like it any better now, as a fourth grade teacher.
I think the second reason has always been, “What if a parent questions the progress reports? What proof do I have?” And inevitably, someone does. I look over my notes and scores and piles of data so I can tell the parent that x or y is the reason their child did not score as the parent anticipated.
So what does this really mean? Does it mean that after 30 years I still don’t feel like I know what I’m doing? Yep. And these last handful of years have just kicked my butt, personally as well as professionally. But I think I’ll save those stories for another day.
Thanks for reading!