Friday, December 6, 2013

Keeping Track of Assignments

In previous years I've always relied on my checklists to keep my kids progressing through their work.  The checklists are pretty exhaustive weekly lists that show what work needs to be completed every day. 

Unfortunately, this year I started to run into a problem. 

It was pretty minor with the boys, they'd check things off they hadn't actually finished so I've found I need to take a minute to read over their list at the end of the day with them.  Simple and easy.

That same issue turned out to not be so minor when it came to my 7th grader.  When she would mark things off she hadn't done, I wouldn't be sure exactly what she still needed to do.  She has a lot more subjects, a lot more assignments and it got to be too much to keep in my head for any length of time (you know, longer than five minutes).

I printed off a few different gradebook pages I found online, but didn't really like any of them.  They just didn't seem to work the way I wanted them to.  So, I decided to go old school.

I pulled out my trust-ey calendar (the same one I use to keep track of holidays) and started writing down all her turn-in-able assignments.  I write down one weeks worth of assignments the beginning of each week (or when I assign them) and then I check my in-box (a little shelf on our bookshelf) every day to see if she's gotten everything done.

If there are missing assignments, now late assignments, I write them on a piece of lined paper I stuck to the wall next to her seat in our school room and highlight them on her checklist.  Now we can both easily keep track of where she is and how she's doing.

I have to admit, it does feel a little micro-manage-ey, but it's working for both of us right now.  My plan is to slowly give her more independence over the next few years.  It's hard to find the happy medium between knowing she's getting everything done and letting her find ways to complete her tasks.

Even though this system is doing the job (for now), I would love to hear how you keep track of your middle or high schooler's assignments.  If you use a gradebook, what does that look like?  If you use your own system, how'd you come up with it? 


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