Backing up the Teacher
Finally, these charts have helped occasionally when a student is positive he or she turned in an assignment, but there is no grade in the gradebook. When this happens, we check to see if the student has the paper with a grade on it (if so, we enter the grade and move on). If not, we then check the charts to see if the work was, indeed turned in. If the assignment has a check, we know that we have seen it and something went wrong between the paper being turned in and it being entered into the gradebook. In these cases, which are rare, we enter an “A” in the gradebook and move on. We don’t believe in punishing a student for our error.
If it is not checked off, however, we are then fairly certain that we never saw it. If it truly had been turned in (with a name), it would have been either on the chart, in the gradebook, or in the student’s folder. Since it is not, it’s a pretty good bet we never saw it. Parents and students are usually satisfied at that point, and turn their attention to their child’s work habits. In this case, if the parent goes to the administration, it is clear that we have a system in place that works, and our statements are upheld.
Without the charts, we could have had many more unhappy parents and students. Since it is such a simple method, parents are able to understand how it works and students are able to access the information they need to be held accountable. This system has created a much more positive classroom climate.