Ever Been Accused of Losing Work?

Discussion in 'Secondary Education' started by substeacher, Nov 15, 2016.

  1. substeacher

    substeacher Rookie

    Joined:
    Apr 29, 2015
    Messages:
    52
    Likes Received:
    13

    Nov 15, 2016

    I'm a long-term sub and have been accused by a student of losing her work. I'm sure that I didn't because I keep ungraded work paper-clipped together according to class and then immediately put it into another stack to be passed back once it's graded and in the book. I'm very organised when it comes to this, so I know I didn't lose it. I'm wondering if this is an excuse many teachers hear or if I'm only hearing it because she thinks she can get over on the long-term sub easily.

    Anyways, I told her that to have the grade put into the grade book she either has to show me the original paper with the grade on it or complete it and hand it in if she doesn't have the original paper . Am I being fair here?
     
  2.  
  3. Linguist92021

    Linguist92021 Phenom

    Joined:
    Feb 4, 2010
    Messages:
    4,752
    Likes Received:
    979

    Nov 15, 2016

    Sometimes some of my students accuse me of losing their folders or work, but not very seriously, it just seems like it's their first reaction. Great, right? Sometimes they're very persistent. I always tell them I don't lose work, I haven't lost anyone's in 5 years (since I've been teaching), and that their folder will turn up. It always does. As far as their work, we look into it, and it always turns out that they either didn't do it, or weren't even in class.
    I don't appreciate the instant blame though.

    If you know you didn't lose it, don't give in! It's an easy way out for a student.
     
  4. teacherintexas

    teacherintexas Maven

    Joined:
    Jul 7, 2005
    Messages:
    5,277
    Likes Received:
    743

    Nov 15, 2016

    Staple the stack of papers together with a list on the top of students who didn't turn in the paper. Do this in class if possible so the kids see you staple them together.

    A teacher I mentored one year kept having students and even parents accusing her of losing papers. I suggested she do the stapler trick and no one accused her of losing a paper again.

    But, yes, it is a common excuse. It's usually the first thing a student will say when they get asked about a paper. It's not just you.
     
    otterpop likes this.
  5. Rockguykev

    Rockguykev Connoisseur

    Joined:
    Mar 3, 2008
    Messages:
    1,931
    Likes Received:
    255

    Nov 16, 2016

    I tell them to check their binder again. Usually they find it. When they don't I accept that I too am imperfect and could have lost it. I don't have a problem excusing one assignment out of a grading period. There is a ton of value in teaching a little grace.
     
    MLB711, dgpiaffeteach and a2z like this.
  6. a2z

    a2z Maven

    Joined:
    Sep 16, 2010
    Messages:
    5,676
    Likes Received:
    1,575

    Nov 16, 2016

    Yep. Papers have been lost. Some had been graded and not entered into the gradebook also. Luckily it was found by the student with the grade on it.

    Mistakes can happen. I'm not saying it did, but sometimes it does happen.
     
  7. catnfiddle

    catnfiddle Moderator

    Joined:
    May 8, 2008
    Messages:
    8,312
    Likes Received:
    1,433

    Nov 16, 2016

    I'm running between two locations for my teaching work, so there is a slight chance I might lose work. Because of this, I tend give students benefit of the doubt and do a quick oral assessment based on the written assignment.
     
    MrsC likes this.
  8. substeacher

    substeacher Rookie

    Joined:
    Apr 29, 2015
    Messages:
    52
    Likes Received:
    13

    Nov 16, 2016

    Thanks for the advice, everyone. It makes me feel better to know that this is a common excuse and not just an accusation being thrown at me. I'll admit to occasionally making errors as far as entering grades into the grade book (which is why I always tell them to never throw anything away unless they check it against the grade book), but I'm completely sure that no papers were lost. Since I always paperclip assignments together, I'd have to lose everyone's work in order to lose the work of one student, and everyone else has their papers.

    I keep telling her to check her folder to see if it was never turned in or if she received it back with a grade on it, but she refuses to do that even though I've already accommodated her request that I look through all of my papers to see if it got mixed in with another class more than once. I've also told her that since it was for a lot of points that I'd be willing to take it if she completes it and hands it in, but she refuses to do that as well, insisting that she already did it once and won't do it over again.

    As far as this situation goes, I think I'm done discussing it with her. For upcoming work, I'll start keeping a record of who didn't hand anything in to avoid this happening again.
     
  9. Peregrin5

    Peregrin5 Maven

    Joined:
    Aug 25, 2011
    Messages:
    5,770
    Likes Received:
    1,000

    Nov 16, 2016

    I rarely lose work. When a kid accuses me of having lost something, it's usually a kid with no organizational skills who isn't following the organization system of our classroom, and it's likely that they're just blaming the teacher because they don't want to take responsibility for having lost the paper themselves. There are two places in my classroom where a paper could be, if it were turned in properly. Either in my grading inbox, or my grading outbox. It never travels further than that.

    I tell them "Regardless of if I lost it or not, I cannot give you a grade on a paper I don't have, so either redo it, or find it either in my inbox or in your binder."

    9 times out of 10 they dig through their binder and find out it was stuffed into pockets or jammed into the bottom of their backpack. Both no-nos with my binder system which requires that everything be in rings and organized by number and letter. If they follow my binder system things don't get lost.

    If it's a kid I know is generally organized and I believe they did the work because they always do the work, I give them the benefit of the doubt.
     
  10. 2ndTimeAround

    2ndTimeAround Phenom

    Joined:
    Aug 10, 2010
    Messages:
    4,325
    Likes Received:
    557

    Nov 17, 2016

    Yep - happens all the time. I'm messy but I'm organized. I've never lost a student's assignment. I've lost an entire class stack of an assignment before, but not an individual's. What has happened is a student tries to sneak in a late assignment by placing it with other papers on my desk. Or left it in his binder. Or wasn't even in class the day it was assigned and he never got his make up work.

    I have skipped placing a kid's grade in my grade book. I also tell my students to hold onto everything until the report cards come out. Such an easy fix when the child has the assignment graded in his binder.

    Just yesterday I mentioned that I was missing three reports in that class. I said I wasn't going to mention names but if Sally, Dick and Harry would see me after class I'd appreciate it. Immediately Sally's friends spoke up on her behalf swearing she saw Sally turn it in. Sally is a great student who has never missed an assignment before. She was shocked. I tell her to look through her book bag and have to tell her friends to stop defending her. Those girls were adamant that I must have lost her paper! Sure enough, Sally finds it in her bag. Hmmmm, Sally's friends....
     
  11. Special-t

    Special-t Enthusiast

    Joined:
    Jun 1, 2008
    Messages:
    2,019
    Likes Received:
    19

    Nov 17, 2016

    Yes! I used to use a turn in box but students caught on that it would be easy for me to 'lose' assignments. So now I print an attendance roster and label the columns with assignment titles. When the kids turn something in I check it off in front of them. It helps us all keep track.
     
  12. otterpop

    otterpop Aficionado

    Joined:
    Jun 14, 2013
    Messages:
    3,804
    Likes Received:
    1,406

    Nov 17, 2016

    I collect all assignments and then clip them together.

    I do not normally lose work, although it has happened. Mostly, things have gotten misplaced in a situation like this: everyone turns in work, I clip it, put it neatly in a tray, and continue teaching. At the end of the class, student says, oh! I forgot to give you __. They throw it into my hand as they're going out the door, and for whatever reason, I set it down on my keyboard or something because I don't have time to stop right then and find the pile of assignments that it should be in. The student's fault, yes - it should have been turned in - but it's also on me. Usually I find it later on.

    On the other hand, for things like homework or big assignments, I try to personally collect the assignment from each kid. I make a list of students not turning the work in. In the gradebook, I mark it "missing" and the add a note such as "student said they would turn in tomorrow." This helps me respond to parents who say, "That assignment is missing? But he told me he turned it in..."

    (I teach upper elementary)
     
    Last edited: Nov 17, 2016

Share This Page

Members Online Now

  1. Backroads,
  2. TnKinder,
  3. RainStorm,
  4. bella84
Total: 517 (members: 6, guests: 488, robots: 23)
test