No marking or comments whatsoevet in exercise books, year 7

(32 Posts)
Iamnotminterested Tue 02-Oct-12 19:40:06

Just wondering if this is the norm now that she has moved into the unchartered waters of secondary school?

radicalsubstitution Tue 02-Oct-12 19:55:55

Exercise books should be marked regularly, with appropriate comments and levels (although not all appropriate). At a minimum, there should be some acknowledgment that the book has been looked at/checked.

This may not take place as regularly as you are used to in primary schools. Some schools have rigid homework timetables, and teachers may only have one opportunity per fortnight to take in books (I certainly have this situation). An unfortunate teacher may be 'scheduled' to take in 3 sets of books in one evening, only to have them all back, marked, within 2 days. With loads of other time constraints this may not always be feasible, so books may not always be marked when scheduled.

That being said, I would expect most subjects to have taken in and marked books by now. If this is routinely not being done in the school, there are serious concerns. Ofsted are very hot on marking.

Does the form tutor check the homework diary? If so, maybe put a note in about the subjects of concern.

Bajas Tue 02-Oct-12 20:05:36

I try to mark all work weekly but this is not always possible due to the constraints mentioned above.
Exam classes will always get priority so it will sometimes be fortnightly for ks3 pupils but never more than 3 weeks even coming up to exams.
If I can manage this with 2/3 timetable of exam classes and Head of Dept duties in a subject which requires a lot of writing (History), it seems as if your school is being somewhat underwhelming.

Iamnotminterested Tue 02-Oct-12 20:23:20

Thanks for comments. The homework diary is checked weekly so I do know that she is actually turning up every day and has contact with a teacher! But i too am a little surprised that on inspection tonight she has done good, neat work but not a comment can I see. I do appreciate that things are going to be less cuddly and familiar than primary, but nothing at all ses a bit crap tbh.

KitKatGirl1 Tue 02-Oct-12 20:25:13

Is this in every subject? Ds in yr 7 has one subject with no marking yet (and a core one) but they've had lots of testing and other events which mean they've missed this subject more than others and also teacher has set a long homework so let them keep their books rather than taking them in. But for all other subjects, all marked weekly and levels/marks as per the guidance sheet stuck in back of books.

KitKatGirl1 Tue 02-Oct-12 20:26:27

How do you know it was marked that regularly in primary? As a primary parent you would surely only see their books at parents' evening so would not know when the work had been marked!

blondefriend Tue 02-Oct-12 20:29:24

I wouldn't necessarily mark actual books on a regular basis. I set homework that is project-based and collect those pieces in separately from the books. Most of the book work is done in class and is either copying notes/diagrams from the board or doing questions that I will then get them to peer mark themselves. However I assume if she's brought the book home than she has been set homework which I would expect to be marked.

No marking in any books? That seems odd. Is there a school marking policy that says only specific assessments will be marked? (And therefore kept in folders at school?)

Iamnotminterested Tue 02-Oct-12 20:55:49

KitKatGirl1 her primary had an open door policy whereby parents could, within reason, ask to see books at any time.

swanthingafteranother Wed 03-Oct-12 09:27:00

I had an issue with unmarked work in Year 7 for my Ds1. Just two subjects. I never really unravelled it, combination of my son being absent, mixups etc. Sorted in end (ie: work was all eventually marked, and marking to high level resumed)At the end of year review I mentioned it to Head of KS3 in passing, and he told me he had removed his daughter from her secondary two terms into Yr 7 because her homework was not being marked! And he thought, as a teacher, that that was unacceptable, for a child to put to the work in, and have no feedback at all.
My son's school does do something called "peer marking" though, which takes the pressure off marking every week, work eventually checked by teacher but in meantime feedback from fellow pupils (Ds1 is consistently given E1 by someone who finds him irritating grin whereas Ds1 always gives people a A of some sort to cheer them up shock

annh Wed 03-Oct-12 10:12:31

This is slightly off-track but does anyone know how normal it is for Yr 7s to be marking each other's homework? It seems to be the norm for ds2. Obviously things like spelling, maths problems etc are straightforward and are either correct or incorrect. However, I am really surprised to see that ds2's geography poem, English imaginative writing etc were marked by a classmate. How does this work? Given that the kids are not set for all subjects and that the person who marked some of his homework could barely spell or express himself, I am wondering what value this added to the homework? I know that teachers can't get around all the marking all of the time but seriously what is the point of doing it if it doesn't get some meaningful response from a teacher?

swanthingafteranother Wed 03-Oct-12 12:13:32

This is peer marking.
The English teacher explained it thus:
they get to see each other's work
they learn the responsibility of judging each other's work (so for example too harsh a mark, can often lead to harsh marking from others)
they show an interest in each other's work, which raises standards
it is a mature approach, so that they can really think about what was required in the homework set
team building!

Eventually it WILL be marked, just in the meantime the teacher is off the hook wink and the child does get at least some feedback in classroom environment

noblegiraffe Wed 03-Oct-12 12:41:13

Books should be marked according to the marking policy which will vary from school to school and from subject to subject. I teach maths, our policy is to mark homework ourselves only. Any work done in class should be marked in class either by the student or using peer assessment. Obviously I wander around and look at their work as they're doing it.

Ofsted reviewed this and said it was fine, by the way!

Madmog Wed 03-Oct-12 14:25:39

My daughter is in Year 7. Some teachers are marking on a weekly basis, which is great for us as we only got to see our daughter's work on parents evening in primary school. Some haven't marked work, but most of these have set a project to be completed over a few weeks, so I guess they'll check the book when the project goes in.

Felicitywascold Wed 03-Oct-12 14:31:14

By now, there should be at least some indication of coherent marking in your yr7s books.

Peer marking is uber trendy, ofsted love it and it is less time consuming for teachers. IMVHO it is a bit of a waste of time in anything other than top sets, and potentially quite damaging to education in lower sets. But I'm aware my opinions are not trendy this week.

"what is the point of doing it if it doesn't get some meaningful response from a teacher?" and "it is a bit of a waste of time in anything other than top sets, and potentially quite damaging to education in lower sets"

Sorry, but I totally disagree with these statements.

Peer marking works well if pupils are given very specific instructions about how to do it. For example, if my English class are studying descriptive writing and their homework is to write a description of a park using a range of descriptive techniques, then their peers (with clear instructions) could read through, highlight all techniques used, then set a target to try using whichever techniques hadn't been used. The pupil who did the work would get a meaningful response, directly linked to the course content. This would work as well with bottom sets as it does with top sets.

I doubt (hope?) many teachers simply say to pupils 'mark your friend's work' without giving any guidance at all.

Another benefit of peer marking (in all ability groups) is that if pupils are 'trained' to mark other people's work using the exam board marking criteria, then they learn what that criteria is and know how to use it in their own work.

<gets off Assessment for Learning soap box. Apologises to anyone caught in the crossfire of my rant>

Felicitywascold Wed 03-Oct-12 19:16:18

Atruth, I also disagree with your first quotation.

However, in response to your criticism of my point. I think the approach you have described is indeed a valuable learning tool for everyone concerned. However, I don't think in lower (or mixed ability) sets the student is necessarily getting much from the feedback from the peer- which will be good in some cases, mixed in some cases and downright inaccurate in others.

To be clear I believe they are getting something from both doing the work and marking someone else's.

Overall I use peer-assessment as a tool because doing it is good for pupils. However, I don't pretend it is a substitute for a 'teachers mark'.

nkf Wed 03-Oct-12 19:18:00

They should have been marked by now.

I think we agree Felicity smile

Felicitywascold Wed 03-Oct-12 19:29:58

grin

Knowsabitabouteducation Wed 03-Oct-12 19:45:22

I would expect books to be marked every 2 - 3 lessons. That means weekly for core lessons (English, Maths, Science) and fortnightly for other subjects.

I would love to do that Knowabit. However, for me, that would mean marking over 100 books a week, which simply isn't possible on top of planning, coursework marking, report writing, teaching, etc, etc. My books get properly marked on a three week cycle, but peer assessed, looked at in lessons, etc, much more regularly. It's the only way I can do it.

Knowsabitabouteducation Wed 03-Oct-12 20:58:29

I am a science teacher and see KS3 students 3x a week. I give out HW one lesson, get it in on another and give it back on the third. Clockwork.

I am not big on peer assessment, and do not see how it replaces teacher marking.

The first time encountered it was when my own DCs were in state primary and I concluded at the time that it was a labour saving device for the teacher.

noblegiraffe Wed 03-Oct-12 21:49:47

Ok, how I might do peer assessment in maths (when the lesson lends itself to it, if it's just tick or cross they can mark their own work!)

Say we're doing a lesson on constructing triangles. I give them examples of some badly constructed triangles and get them to say why they're crap. They then come up with the success criteria for a well constructed triangle e.g. 1) drawn with a ruler and pencil 2) lines correct length 3) compass construction arcs visible and clear

They then have these in their books as they answer some triangle construction questions.

They then swap books and mark according to the criteria (which they've hopefully met as they've been told!). The kid marking it can say 'correct length lines and construction arcs, but next time use a pencil for drawing' which is what I would have written myself 30 times over.

microcosmia Mon 08-Oct-12 00:11:25

I'd be concerned at the absence of marking at this point. DS started secondary in Sept too and has been marked at least weekly in all but 2 subjects (option subjects, just chosen). I'm not sure if the marking practice is different here (Ireland). I always check his copies and any tests which have to be signed and I'm as much interested in comments as marks. This week he got "Good use of sarcasm" in English hmm

At the back of his school journal there's a section for daily reports also which is filled in for each class period for excellent work/good work/incomplete homework/unacceptable behaviour and so on. Even the number of toilet passes is recorded. I didn't know about this section until he said the tutor needed it signed two weeks in. Could there be a similar section in your DD's journal if these are used in her school?

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