Partner Project Problem!!

Discussion in 'Elementary Education' started by LindsayRose, Mar 15, 2010.

  1. LindsayRose

    LindsayRose Rookie

    Joined:
    Jan 15, 2007
    Messages:
    68
    Likes Received:
    0

    Mar 15, 2010

    Hey all, I have a situation. I teach 5th grade and my school requires grades 5-8 to participate in the science fair. The students were given the option to work alone, or with a partner. My kiddos started working on their project about a month ago and I assigned mini due dates to get the project done in 4 parts.

    Today the project was due. Along with projects I got 2 parents letters about how their child had a partner who did nothing to help! I chatted with one partner who was being accused, and it seems she didnt help with part 1-3 and wanted to help at the end but with no luck from her partner, I dont blame her though! I wouldnt want a partner to do the end work when they arnt sure what went on for part 1-3!

    What would you do when it comes time to grade?? How do I grade fairly to ensure the partner who did most of the work does well, and how do I figure out how to grade the lazy one fairly??

    THANKS!!!
     
  2.  
  3. Grover

    Grover Cohort

    Joined:
    Mar 15, 2010
    Messages:
    506
    Likes Received:
    0

    Mar 15, 2010

    It seems to me that you have a significant responsibility for this outcome. It's not reasonable to expect that all fifth graders will be able to follow through on a large project independently, and it's probable that at a least a few will have problems coordinating work with a partner. It would be appropriate at that age for the teacher to make regular progress checks so that difficulties can be worked out in a timely way. You say you assigned mini-due dates- so why weren't you aware of this problem at the first one?
    I'd also be careful about assuming that a science project completed on time was due entirely, or even partly, to the student's hard work. Lazy students have parents, too. Do you really know who did the work? Often science fair projects and similar undertakings are a measure of the parents' knowledge and ambition,not the student's.
     
  4. LindsayRose

    LindsayRose Rookie

    Joined:
    Jan 15, 2007
    Messages:
    68
    Likes Received:
    0

    Mar 15, 2010

    The part that gets me is that i have told the kids to come to me with any difficulties whether it be questions or problems. I am also annoyed that these parent notes are coming forth NOW! There is no way for me to do checks beyond them handing in each part when it was due, why these two sets of partners didn't come to me with their concerns is beyond me. I feel like my hands are tied because it is basically after the fact!

    I stressed to the kids that they can work alone, and if they choose to have a partner they must make sure they can trust this person to be responsible as well as able to meet outside of class!
     
  5. Grover

    Grover Cohort

    Joined:
    Mar 15, 2010
    Messages:
    506
    Likes Received:
    0

    Mar 15, 2010

    Well, in that case I'd give both partners the same grade. The 'good' one didn't follow your directions, either, and at least part of the problem is that she didn't allow the 'lazy' partner to help when help was offered. In a work environment all that matters is results, and in a school environment hopefully a key element is working cooperatively. The results are what they are, for both students, and cooperation involves both too.
     
  6. WindyCityGal606

    WindyCityGal606 Enthusiast

    Joined:
    Nov 18, 2006
    Messages:
    2,469
    Likes Received:
    12

    Mar 15, 2010

    Whenever I assign partner work I make sure to include a rubric for each person that indicates they will be graded independently and how. Attitude, work quality, effort, and time management are independent grading criteria listed on the rubrics. Although the product might be incredible, this allows each student to earn a score for the actual daily work too.
     
  7. DHE

    DHE Connoisseur

    Joined:
    Jun 14, 2007
    Messages:
    1,909
    Likes Received:
    29

    Mar 16, 2010

    I was thinking along the same lines as Zoe. Each student would have a rubric where they would be responsible ofr their own actions. In the future, I would say provide a rubric and have portions due along the way.
     
  8. Windy City

    Windy City Companion

    Joined:
    Jun 4, 2007
    Messages:
    131
    Likes Received:
    0

    Mar 16, 2010

    I agree. This is a big reason why I always have each student with their own rubric AND have them write reflections on the project for checkpoints.

    I would write back to the parents and explain that you had multiple checkpoints where the students were supposed to inform you of any issues. Having them inform you after the fact is too late. Explain that every part of the process is part of their learning, including how to handle partner work.
     
  9. HeatherY

    HeatherY Habitué

    Joined:
    Nov 24, 2008
    Messages:
    760
    Likes Received:
    1

    Mar 17, 2010

    Why can't they evaluate themselves and their partner? Draw up a form for them to fill in where they grade themselves on work and effort, team participation, and let them grade the others on their team. Some of the lazy ones might even tell the truth. You could also add in a space for them to explain why they did not come to you. Perhaps some of them were bullied in to doing the work themselves and were afraid to step forward about it.
     

Share This Page

Members Online Now

Total: 191 (members: 0, guests: 157, robots: 34)
test