How Rubrics Saved My Life

If we are being honest, Jesus saved my life. But the use of rubrics in my classroom has been a huge blessing.

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I teach English II, which is an End of Instruction tested subject in the State of Oklahoma. I have a lot of material to cover and a limited amount of time in which to do it. With the implementation of Common Core, I make it a priority that writing be a part of the curriculum as much as possible. But, in the world of an English teacher, more writing, which equals more learning and hands-on-experience, also means more grading.

Blech.

This year, I took the basics from the state writing rubric and only included what a score of 4 would earn. I average the five components together (on a scale from 4-1, like the state test) and that’s the grade I give the student (all of my essays are out of 100%).

I have had these English II Writing Rubricsmade up for awhile, but I never really used them. I have specialized rubrics that I use for other essays, but for general writing — I was lost. In one of my classes, I’m guinea-pigging the use of Interactive Notebooks. While students have a very organized notebook, I have a hard time grading their writing from the notebook! I’m currently halfway through grading the essays from my 3rd hour with these rubrics. There’s space to write notes and I highlight the areas students need the most work.

It’s going so fast, having this guide, and it’ll be a really quick and easy way for me to organize and post their grades.

In short, the use of the rubric has saved my jam-packed weekend from being “bleh I have to grade essays.” Instead it’s more of, “now I can hangout with my boyfriend and not have a worry on my mind!” Thanks, rubrics!

Ms. K

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