Throughout this second semester my English teacher changed from Mr. T to Miss. M. For this blog post I would like to write a letter to Miss. M. In the letter I would like to talk about three important points. First, I would like to address our weekly blog post grading system. Second, I would like to give you a student’s idea about not receiving rubrics for assignments. Lastly, there were some problems with the brawl and I would like to share them and my own opinion with you. Miss M, you did a very good job as your first time teaching, but these are some things as a student that I would like to bring to your attention.
Each week we get a blog assignment, it’s usually a free write unless Miss. M gives us a specific blog post, like this one. In my first semester each time we were given a new blog topic, Mr. T would also throw in a different kind of writing style. Whether it be from third person, first or a story type blog, they were always somewhat different. Each week I received a 25/25, unless it was late, for my blog post. Along with that grade I received a some feedback on how my writing was that week. This semester I have not once received a 25/25. Granted I have turned in some of my blogs late and not to the correct word length. For the purpose of supporting my point I wish to overlook those examples instead of making exceptions each time I make a group generalization about all the blogs this semester. I believe that I have turned all the blogs to the best of my abilities with my best writing effort put forth. Also I have not received any feedback from you, Miss. M. I believe that if the assignment is done, to the best of my ability and no feedback is given, that I may repeat the same mistakes without being docked points on later blogs because I was not corrected by my teacher, who knows better than I.
Rubrics to me are a very important document. Whenever a new project or debate is given out I expect a piece of paper in my hand that states the rules, expectations and outline of the project or debate. At the start of the second semester we had to read our 4th quarter book report book. At the start of this assignment were given the directions to find songs that related to our book and draw comparisons. A rubric was not handed out for that assignment so we were unclear of the directions even though they were explained orally. Then later the assignment was changed, we are no longer doing the musical playlist but a book club discussion. We were never given a rubric for that either. Before I go on I must make something clear, to me an oral rubric doesn’t count as a rubric. Here’s why: The oral rubric can be changed, misinterpreted, misremember and many other things that would jeopardize the remembering and truth of the rubric.
When I am given a project I want a piece of paper that tells me my guidelines, rules, expectations, the whole nine yards. Not having a rubric leaves the outcome of the project up to chance. Each person interprets the rules differently. Having a rubric insures that every student will be turning in the same product, in terms of information and relevance to the lesson. In another example, for our brawl we were not give a rubric so the directions of what information each group had to have been misconstrued. Speaking personally, my group was very unsure of what information and how much we had to have for the discussion. Also we didn’t know what chapters to use for our analysis because of an overall classroom miscommunication.
At the start of the bawl were only allowed to use chapters 1-6, so we did not prepare for chapters 7-10, but when it came time to the brawl suddenly chapters 7-10 were available to use. Funny how things turn out. Also rubrics cause an increase in points. Student see what is required of them on the rubric so they can go above and beyond to gain extra credit towards their grade. For the brawl, I believe if I had been given a rubric I would have been able to get more points on the whole discussion.
Also during the brawl I believe your intentions were misconstrued. When a group got up to debate and had a clean debate (Clean meaning no yelling, anger, or topic change), you looked bored and disinterested in what was happening in your classroom. Whenever there was yelling and anger in the debate your face changed from bored to excited and interested. It was almost like you cared more about that debate. Now I know what you might say, “ I was interested in all the discussions we were having in class, the yelling debates just made me more awake and alert.” Yes, I understand that but from a student’s perspective it looked as if my teacher liked the yelling and emotional outbursts more than the safe and restricted debates. I know that you’re just learning how to control students during a debate, and it’s getting better but I thought I would share to you what you looked like during our brawl. Students look up to their teachers and judge them at any given moment, having facial expressions that show disinterest and discontent discourage students and make them feel not good enough because they are unsatisfying you.
I want to take this time to congratulate you on all the things that you have accomplished this semester. I am very happy to see you become your very own teacher who makes real money and doesn’t have to work till 2 am. Thank you so much for coming in and trying to control the class, I know it wasn’t easy. We can be a handful, a sassy handful. Even though you have a lot to learn I believe that everyone must start somewhere, in their journey to make wonderful impressions on children’s minds. Thank you Miss. M for all you have done for my class.
In conclusion, I want to thank you for taking the challenge and teaching my English class. I hope you find everything that you’re looking for. Thank you for reading my opinion letter all about you, I know that could not have been easy. Good Luck!
Sincerely, Sarah Mundi