When a student fails a test....

Discussion in 'Second Grade' started by JLT63, Jul 18, 2011.

  1. JLT63

    JLT63 Rookie

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    Jul 18, 2011

    Hi, all! :)

    Last year, when a student failed a test, I would allow them to correct the test at home and raise their grade to 70 (this was a suggestion given to me because I was new to taking grades - I was in Kinder before).

    I don't really care for this idea, because if I want to document for retention, it shows passing grades in the system (I do keep my own written records, but the report card reflects whatever is in the system).

    What do you do when a student fails a test or assignment? Do you give them the same test over, or a different test, or another assignment? Or maybe the grade stands, but you give them extra work to do to bring up the grade?

    I want to be fair and give my students ample opportunity to raise their grade, but at the same time I think the original score should be shown somehow.

    Any ideas?

    Thanks so much!
     
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  3. Caesar753

    Caesar753 Multitudinous

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    Jul 18, 2011

    I don't necessarily agree that their original score needs to be reflected in their overall grade. If the student learned the material, even a bit late, and demonstrated that knowledge on a make-up test, I believe that his newer, higher grade should stand and the original, lower grade should be thrown out. The overall grade reflects mastery of material. It doesn't and shouldn't reflect whether it took a student more or fewer tries to get it right. If we start doing things that way, we're penalizing students for being a little slower on the uptake, and I don't think that's a fair way to do things in our classrooms.

    With that having been said, I'm not sure that correcting the test at home is the best way to determine whether a student has actually mastered the material. With access to outside resources like parents and books, the student could be giving correct answers without actually being proficient in the content.

    I think that a better way of doing things would be to develop an alternate make-up test or assignment with activities that address the same content, for the student to do in class in the presence of the teacher after the student has done appropriate make-up practice work to develop the skill and learn the content. There's no point in retaking a test if you haven't taken the time to relearn the material.
     
  4. queenie

    queenie Groupie

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    Jul 18, 2011

    Should the emphasis really be on the grade?? I mean, I think what is important (esp. in primary grades!) is whether or not a student masters a concept...
     
  5. czacza

    czacza Multitudinous

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    Jul 18, 2011

    I didn't do a lot of number grades in second grade.
     
  6. HWilson

    HWilson Comrade

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    Jul 18, 2011

    I allow my students to make test corrections and half their points back. I have also been torn if it's the right thing to do or not since I can't decide either way I've just stuck with it. The justification I use (and this may help you too) is 1. When they make the test corrections they are still working out math problems.2. If they make corrections- yes I do have some that won't even try-and they get it correct then they do know how to do it. They either had a bad day when testing, the material may have slipped their mind or whatever the reason but they obviously do know how to complete the problem when there isn't as much pressure .

    The problems that also concern me is I think sometimes the kids cheat by looking at the answer someone else put they got correct.(I think I'm going to make them start showing work on a seperate sheet of paper for test corrections. I'm also wonder if the kids try or study as hard bc they go into the test knowing they will be allowed to make the ,corrections. So any advice there would also be greatly appreciated!! :)
     
  7. iloveschool

    iloveschool Companion

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    Jul 18, 2011

    This will be my first year in first so I have never taken numerical grades before. Other teachers in my school have talked to me about this situation though. Their concern in letting the students raise their grade is that at the end of the year it looks like the student has mastered the concepts when they haven't. Some students needed to be retained, but parents argue that their child had passed each subject. They only passes because they were allowed to redo work. I can see giving them another chance to retake a test, but if they know they will have another chance will they just not study for the first one? I feel like if you are going to give grades then they should reflect the knowledge the child has not their knowledge plus corrections. I just don't know the best way to do that. Great question!!!
     
  8. waterfall

    waterfall Virtuoso

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    Jul 18, 2011

    Like some others mentioned, I think you should try to re-teach the material and re-test, not just allow them to correct at home. If they can correct at home and bring it back, they may have just looked at the book or had mom/dad/sibling help them. That doesn't really show that they have mastered the material.

    If it's just a couple kids, maybe pull a small group during independent work time to review the material. If you coteach with a special ed teacher or other type of intervention specialist, she/he may be willing to pull a group for you. Then retest. If the student gets a higher grade, that should be their final grade. That way, you know that they actually did master the material (maybe just a week or 2 later). If the student is being retaught the material over and over again with no improvement, thats a good sign the student needs to be in interventions.
     
  9. Rabbitt

    Rabbitt Connoisseur

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    Jul 19, 2011

    I do not use grading as you suggest.

    When a student does poorly on anything, I add it to a goal in CAFE. If it's several goals, those students usually need an RTI intervention.
     
  10. DZH494

    DZH494 Rookie

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    Jul 19, 2011

    It is required in my school to give the students a letter grade. I have to give the students at least three try's on a given topic in order for a low grade to go on the report card. It can be very hard trying to explain to parents that their child is failing without enough documentation. Giving students three different chances on the same concept would help prove that the student is n ot doing well. Students need their true grade.
     
  11. JLT63

    JLT63 Rookie

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    Jul 24, 2011

    As the original poster of this question, I apologize for not getting back in a timely manner to see these wonderful responses. I SO appreciate all of you taking time to give your input.

    My main goal is for my students to master the content and have records of their progress through the year. Sometimes I hate the fact that I am required to give grades because I don't think it helps the student, and grades may not always reflect the students true skills.

    Thank you so much for your feedback on this issue! I have a lot to think about!
     
  12. jenglish97

    jenglish97 Devotee

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    Jul 24, 2011

    When I have a student that does not do well on a test, I allow them to take a retest a few days later. I usually call the parents and tell tell them that their child had a difficult time with a test. I tell them that I will allow them to retake the test. It might be the same one or a different version. Then I average the two grades and make that their grade for the test.

    I do not rely on tests alone for my student's final grades. I was a horrible test taker, as a child, and do not feel that a test can tell you if you know and understand a concept. I felt tests are just to memorize the current information. Usually after taking a test, students do not remember a whole lot of what was taught. Students need to apply the information and skills they are taught through hands-on activities and projects in my classroom. I teach a third grade inclusion classroom so differentiation is extremely important to all of my students.

    Hope this helps!
     

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