Providing quality feedback, and setting aside time for students to read it, reflect on it, and revise with it pushes back against the desire to go fast instead of focusing on mastery. Doing this frequently and consistently also helps build a positive classroom culture; Students can tell the difference between a classroom where feedback is being used as a justification for the grade they received and a classroom where feedback is the pathway to both learning and the grades that reflect that learning.
Standards Based Grading
Standards-Based Grading presents opportunities and challenges. With the right standards, history curriculum can fit into an SBG system smoothly and effectively.
ChatGPT & Standards-Based Grading
I decided to see what advice ChatGPT could produce if I put in the prompt "Write a blog post about tips for standards-based grading in social studies." I am copying below what the AI provided to me. It's all fairly standard tips, the type you would see as an introduction to the topic in a general methods textbook. The second part of this post is simply my thoughts on what the AI produced.
C3 Historical Thinking Skills Proficiency Scales
This post contains proficiency scales I have drafted for all C3 history standards for high school. Hopefully they offer a clear starting point for teaching and assessing historical thinking in addition to content.
National History Day & the C3 Framework
The alignment between NHD and C3 creates unique opportunities when a curriculum actively leverages both. Students need to see how skills are interconnected and rely on each other when applied to a "real world" task. Regardless of whether a school uses traditional or standards-based grading, NHD and C3 are powerful tools for doing inquiry based learning and teaching historical thinking skills.
C3 Proficiency Scales: Round 2
Not all standards are equal. Some standards are foundational, some are extensions, some are inextricably linked when they come to life beyond the curriculum documents. This is where teachers and content experts need to add their experience and expertise to the discussion. Engaging with curriculum makes teachers better at their craft and offers significant insight that curriculum experts alone may miss.
Standards-Based Grading Assessment Design
How can we make frequent and spiraled assessments in a standards-based grading system work while retaining the joy of teaching and learning? It's not easy, but can be accomplished if we redefine what assessment looks like. Here are a few things I have learned that helped me make standards-based grading work with in a social studies classroom.
C3 Standards: Writing Proficiency Scales
Our department has adopted and prioritized the C3 standards. One of the things I like the most about the C3 standards is their foundation in Inquiry processes that support each of the four disciplines. One issue I still go back and forth on is to what extent a foundation 9/10 course needs to have standards … Continue reading C3 Standards: Writing Proficiency Scales
Moving Towards Standards Based Grading in History
I no longer teach at a school that uses standards based grading. However, I believe in the spirit of it; how it honors growth over time, includes clearer and more visible learning objective, offers opportunities for better feedback, and generally supports learning over GPA outcomes. (That's a tall order to sell, I know). So, I have been reflecting on how to integrate the best parts of SBG into a traditional grading system.
Courageous Deletions: Surviving the Interminable Avalanche of Historical Content
The content of history curriculum is constantly growing and teachers have less and less time to teach it. Teachers need strategies to guide content selection, make courageous deletions, and unlock the potential of history education. This includes involving student choice and inquiry into the process.
Thematic Unit Design in US History
My unit design process for a thematic course involves overcoming several challenges: content and skill selection, assessment design, and leaving space for inquiry, scaffolding, and differentiation. A healthy dose of backwards design alongside the four non-negotiables of my own process end up making things work.