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Make a New Year's Resolution to Grade Papers with Wise Feedback

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To Consider During Your End of Holiday Grading

As the holiday break dwindles to a final few days, you may finally be thinking about grading all those papers you brought home. With a resolution to be a better teacher, I thought I would share one small way to help students improve their work, and perhaps instill some self-efficacy and a growth mindset.

Before you start marking up papers, consider the following: students who receive “wise” feedback, particularly African American students with low trust of their teachers, are more likely to edit drafts and work towards improving their work. (You can read the academic paper to learn more.) 

How to Give Wise Feedback

Giving wise feedback involves two key components:

1. Stating you have high standards for quality work

2. Stating that you believe the student can improve and eventually meet your high standards with effort

If possible, providing ways for the student to get support to meet the standards is also helpful.  Why is wise feedback important? A lot of it has to do with something called stereotype threat. You can also learn more about wise feedback at this blog. I hope you consider including this in your practice in the new year!  

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Michelle has taught 6th-9th grade science in Texas and New York City for eight years. Following teaching, she became a math/science instructional coach and is in her second year coaching teachers. She currently lives in State College, PA with her husband and daughter. Michelle received a M.Ed. in Science Education from the University of Texas at Austin and loves to immerse herself in science--she worked in the GK12 program and will be taking her second trip to Antarctica to work alongside researchers as a PolarTREC teacher in November of 2015. Michelle's experience as a science teacher and coach has led her to blog about finding ways to help new science teachers navigate the profession.
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Guest Thursday, 27 October 2016