|Students need timely feedback. While a student is wondering “I’m not sure about that last question” you have a great opportunity to capitalize on this interest to review answers. Tomorrow or the next day that student might not remember the assignment or the quiz.
If you don’t need the information from the assignment to assess student understanding or plan activities here are a few suggestions for giving feedback quickly.
Here’s your obvious choice: Project the answers or hand out answer keys. Students correct their own papers. This can be an opportunity to discuss an answer that students identify as needing clarification.
Note: I usually avoid having students trade papers and correcting a peer’s work. I just seem to see too many interactions when the papers were handed back that weren’t positive.
- Choose a capable student to announce the answers to your group. I found this helped a gifted student get attention in a very positive way. She didn’t feel like she got enough attention because I didn’t call on her every time she had the correct answer. Having her announce answers gave her just the support she needed.
- Choose a student who might otherwise struggle with the assignment. Practice a bit ahead of time so the student is comfortable calling out answers. I found this helped students who lacked confidence in successfully completing the assignment.
- Better yet! Can you pair a capable student with a student who might struggle?
There’s something in the answers…
- Make a pattern in the answers so it’s easy to grade at a glance: T F T F T F or 11 22 33 44. Students think it’s a pattern but they’re not sure you would do that until you confirm it!
- Are kids completing a commercially made assignment and you can’t include a pattern? Announce the last five answers on a math worksheet or two answers on a reading, science, or social studies assignment. Ask students to leave a note on your desk if they need to talk to you about the assignment.
Do you have other ideas to share for having students help with grading papers?