What went wrong with the rubric?

So in my last post, I was full of complaints and frustration.  I was disappointed that the rubric, which was sort of the cornerstone of my year, had proved somewhat difficult for me and the students to use at quarter-end.  I had thought that it would reveal so much about each student, that it would be able to demonstrate his or her work and progress.  And yet, I only blame myself for half of its failure.  The other half is also my fault, but I don’t blame myself for it.

First, mea culpa.  I was thinking that the rubric would be the key to understanding everything about a student’s performance.  But if I had just read the damn thing, I would have seen that it only comments on homework and class work.  OK, and it has (used to have!) a place to talk about writing.  But that’s it!  What about content?  Nowhere on that sheet does it say: “mastered the material” or “learned the vocabulary” or “can discuss the main issues.”  And I’m going to go out on a limb here and say that learning the content of the course is the most important thing.  (Will I need to retract that statement?)

Second, and this is not so much my fault.  I’m still learning too!  I don’t know how to create a rubric . . . yet!  So I started with a rubric created by the fabulous Jen Fleischer, and then I tweaked it to suit Social Studies.  But I didn’t know what I didn’t know.  So there were some problems.  And I fixed them.  And you can learn all about it in my next post.  Which I’m going to write right now!



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