Bernardo, Middle School Humanities Teacher

I thought students would improve a little bit with rubrics. I did not think it would be that drastic.

“I’ve had students self-grade their projects with a rubric and turn it in with their assignment. What I’ve noticed is that since I’ve done that the projects are almost all A’s and B’s. The surprising thing was that I thought students would improve a little bit with rubrics. I did not think it would be that drastic.

Students asked me, ‘Is that going to be our grade or are you still going to grade it?’ I told them, ‘We’ll see. I haven’t decided yet.’ I thought that knowing I might use their grades, they would inflate their grades, but they didn’t. If anything, they were mostly spot on. If it was off, it was probably them grading themselves harder than I would have graded them.

The next step for me is not allowing students to turn in a project unless it’s earned a certain score on the rubric, or having a peer score it and then having a conversation with the peer. Maybe the peers would tell them or help them recognize, ‘Oh, there’s something I need to do,’ so they can improve it before it gets turned in.”

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