Thursday, October 14, 2010
Professional development today. It was a bit dry, but it was useful, because it dealt with assessment. I fucking hate grading and all that jazz, and I'm glad to be at a school where grades are regarded as a necessary evil rather than the be-all end-all of education. We assess for learning as much as possible before doing assessment of learning, and grades are done with the students rather than done to them.
Yeah, it sounds good, but it's beastly hard to do. It's all part of teaching the intrinsic value of learning and excellence, rather than rewarding or punishing with grades. And yet we still have to report whether or not they get what we teach. So we're spending a couple of days working on how this happens at our school. And a lof of the process is still up in the air, so we're working on hashing it out.
What does one do after a day of such work? One walks across the street from school and drinks a few down with co-workers. The staff and barflys had very complimentary things to say about the school since we took over, telling us that the kids were much more respectful now and the environment around the school was much improved. Good to hear!