Friday, February 26, 2010

To Grade or Not to Grade? That is the Question.


I'm almost afraid to answer this week's Blog Cruise question, "Do you keep grades?".  Those in a traditional school setting measure performance by a grading system and sometimes find it difficult to imagine a setting in which this is not always needed.  In some homeschools, a grading system is used.  In mine, it is not.  Well, for the most part. 

I think a lot of it has to do with your philosophy of homeschooling.  I want our schooling to be a more natural part of life.  I don't always succeed in this, but this is my desire.  Learning is just something we do each day, just like chores and eating meals and going to church on Sunday.  It's part of who we are, it's what we do because of who we are.  A grading system doesn't seem to work well with this view of education.  I don't feel the need to grade when we are learning together.  An F on a poor page of handwriting is not going to motivate my child to improve, working together toward mastering something he struggles with should work much better.  An A on a piece of paper is not what I want my child to strive for, understanding what they are learning is my goal.  I was a student who could pull off good grades and then promptly forget everything I learned.  That's not what I want for my kids.

That's not to say I never grade anything.  Our math programs are on the computer and they automatically grade for me.  This is a wonderful tool for me to keep track of where my kids are at and which areas they may need help in or are breezing through.  I don't use these as grades for a report card, but will let them they know they need to reach a certain percentage correct or redo the lesson.  Math is an excellent example of an informal grading system fitting into an informal philosophy of homeschooling.

Once they reach high school, I find myself needing to assign grades for the purpose of a transcript.  For subject areas that lend themselves to grading, such as math, I will grade by number of answers correct.  For other areas, such as history, I will use a more "contract grade" approach and assign a certain amount of work and grade based on if the work is completed and the effort given.  This is a more subjective grading approach but it mirrors that of the system used in my college days and seems to work best with our philosophy.  None of my high schoolers have had a 4.0 yet, so I'm not suggesting arbitrarily assigning A's for everything.  I hope that their grades will reflect their work but I don't overly stress about it either.

The fact that I graduated college with a 3.89 GPA has no impact on my life today.  I don't want to make it all about the grades because really, that is a superficial system.  I'd prefer having objectives and attempting to meet those objectives by graduation.  My main goals are that my children know how to learn and that they know how to walk with the Lord.  The second goal used to be that they would walk with the Lord and love Him with all their mind, heart and strength.  I have since come to realize that this is not a goal I can make.  They each have free will and will make their own choices.  As a parent, I can teach them how to learn and what it means to walk with the Lord.  They have to take it from there.      

I'm sure there are some who use a more formal grading system effectively in their home.  We are just one family and the main thing I have learned over fourteen years of homeschooling is that there is not just one right way to do it.  We're responsible to do what works for our family, and so far this has been the way we have approached grading.  How about you?  Have you found a grading system to be helpful or do you find it easier to work towards mastery?  Do you have a long term goal for your children that helps keep you on track, grading or no?  Feel free to share your thoughts in the comment section!  
 
Check out more answers to these questions at the TOS Crew Blog Cruise Hub.  
Links will be posted each Tuesday!





2 comments:

Debbie said...

Lori,
Our reasons for grading and not grading are very much the same. Great post.

Annie Kate said...

Hey, our homeschool is based on the second goal you mentioned. I never, ever thought that it might not be a goal I should set, but I'll really have to sit down and think about that.

Thanks for that insight.:)


Annie Kate

Tags

#imabzzagent (4) 12 Pearls of Christmas Series (13) 2011 Book Blogger Recommendation Challenge (1) 2011 E-Book Challenge (1) 2011 Fantasy Challenge (1) 2011/2012 home education plan (1) 52 Books in 52 Weeks (25) 9/11 (3) ABC's (1) abc's of homeschooling meme (13) abc's of homeschooling meme homeschool (1) about me (2) accounting (1) Adult Fiction (16) Adult/Teen Fiction (29) all natural products (4) ambelside (1) Angels (1) anti-bullying (1) AP Prep (1) apologia (1) Art (5) audio (1) Audiobook (5) awards (3) B90Days (2) bakeoff (1) BB Media (1) beautiful tuesday (1) Bible (24) biography (3) Birds and Bees (3) blessings (1) Blog Cruise (19) Blog Vision (1) bloggers (1) blogging (1) Bloggy Boot Camp (2) bloggybootcamp (1) Book Challenge (2) Book Sneeze (1) books (2) boots (1) bullies (1) bullying (1) Burn Out (2) burn-out (1) buttons (1) buyer beware (1) Bzz Agent (2) challenges (1) Character Training (4) Charlotte Mason (3) children's fiction (12) Christian (80) Christian Encouragement (2) Christian Living (21) Christmas (7) christmasgift (1) church history (1) Classical (3) co-op (1) co-ops (1) coffee (1) coffee cup key (1) computer (7) computer skills (6) contest (1) contests (3) convention updates (4) cooking (1) copywork (1) craziness (1) Creation (1) Crossway (5) current events (1) devotions (1) Drafting (1) dreams (1) dresses (1) DVD (9) e-books (10) Easter (1) elementary school (4) Encouragement (4) English (11) Exercise (2) failures (1) farming (1) Favorites (22) feet (1) Fiction (1) finances (2) FIRST (12) five question friday (2) fluffiness (1) food (3) for mom (23) for sale (1) foreign language (1) fort (2) fractions (1) Free (3) freedom (1) full curricula (1) fun (24) games (13) gaming (3) geek (5) geography (5) Getting Started Homeschooling (6) gettingold (1) gift ideas (2) girls (1) giveaway (38) Giveaway Winners (15) giveaways (1) grace (1) graduates (1) grammar (1) graphics (1) gratitude (1) guitar (1) handmade (1) handsonlearning (1) handwriting (3) health (5) High School (45) history (21) holidays (4) homeschool (27) homeschool helps (18) homeschool misfit awards (8) homeschooling (24) homeschooling posts (4) hope (1) hormones (1) household (10) how to (1) hscrew (9) humor (2) imagination (1) insecurity (1) junior high (2) kindergarten (1) language arts (25) lapbooking (5) learning styles (1) lesson planning (2) library (1) life (1) life in my house (1) literature (6) LitFuse (8) love (5) magazines (6) makeup (1) Mama Kat's Prompts (6) mamakatsprompts (1) maps (1) marketing (1) marraige (2) math (24) media collective (1) memes (7) misc. (11) Miscellany Monday (2) money management (3) movies (2) music (22) mustread (1) my crazy life (2) my fiction (7) MyBlogSpark (19) NaNoWriMo (7) nature (1) nature's workshop plus (1) NetGalley (2) non-fiction (11) Nook (1) Not Me Monday (2) not perfect (5) notebooking (1) novels (16) online book (2) online learning (16) organization (1) Our Curricula (2) Our Family Homeschool (32) parenting (1) Parrish (1) personal stories (4) personal updates (33) perspective (1) phonics (2) photos (6) physical education (1) piano (1) picture books (3) pillsbury (1) pin curls (1) pinterest (1) pirates (1) Planner modules (1) planners (3) poetry (2) pop culture (1) pre-teen (1) preschool (12) programming (1) projects (1) promotions (8) prompts (1) puppets (1) QandA (1) question of the week (15) questions (1) Quotes (2) rambling (5) ratings (1) read alouds (3) reading (13) reading challenges (2) red dress club (5) Red Writing Hood (2) reflections (15) reluctant readers (2) retro (1) revell (2) reviewing (1) Reviews by Subject (1) romance (1) Sample Posts (1) sarcasm (1) SAT Prep (4) saving $ (2) scavenger hunt (1) scheduling (1) science (20) Scripture memory (1) search engine (1) selfhelp (1) she speaks (1) shiny stuff (1) Simple Woman's Daybook (1) Snacks (7) SOAP (2) soapbox (2) socialization (3) software (12) song (1) speakgeek (1) special needs (4) speech therapy (1) spelling (5) spiritual (9) steampunk (2) storytelling (1) strenght in homeschooling (1) strength in homeschooling (1) suicide awareness (1) teachergeek (1) teen (6) teen fiction (1) teenagers (2) temple con (1) thanksgiving (1) the curriculum choice (2) The Homeschool Misfits Awards (5) Thomas Nelson (5) thrillers (1) Thursday Thirteen (4) THV Link Up (1) timberdoodle (1) timeline (1) timer (1) top ten Tuesday (4) toptentues (3) TOS Crew (143) toscrew (1) tough topics (1) toydle (1) toys (5) Trdc (3) tutor (1) Tyndale (18) typing (2) Ultimate Blog Party 2011 (1) Unit Studies (5) unity (1) upcoming products (2) updates (1) used books (1) video (4) videos (1) virtual world (2) vocabulary (3) vote (1) Voyagers (1) walmart (1) Waterbrook (12) websites (6) wedding (1) Weekly Wrap Up (2) weight loss (1) welcome (2) Who Am I? (1) whowoulddonatethistothesalvationarmyinthefirstplace (1) wofimage (3) Wordless Wednesday (15) worksheets (2) worldview studies (1) Write on Edge (1) writing (16) writing prompts (3) yafiction (2) young adult fiction (1)

LinkWithin

Blog Widget by LinkWithin
 
Blog Design by A Mommy's Blog Design Studio (© Copyright 2011)
voyeur porn porn movies sex videos hd porno video