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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?

Dominodonkey Wed 10-Oct-12 21:51:20

"I am glad my children are in independent schools where their teachers don't begrudge them when marking their books."
I don't begrudge them so much as actually do not have the time. Assuming you do not believe that teachers should work 8 - 5.30 and then carry on every night and every weekend day. I have already put in 3 hours on Saturday plus about 4 on Sunday and 2 or more after seven each evening. Planning A level and AS level work can often take an hour per lesson so there go all my PPA periods, that's before I have even begun to plan for KS 3 or 4 as well as organising examination entries, writing documents for KS 4 parents evening etc.

Perhaps I shouldn't go to bed so I could mark KS 3 books weekly.

I know that many independent school teachers couldn't cope with the workload of those in the state sector and with small classes the marking is clearly far less.

OP do remind your child to give her book in when asked. I have on occasion taken a book in about 8 weeks into term and found it hasn't been marked yet though everyone else's has been marked a number of times. I don't always record book marking as I would do when an assessment has been given in and marked.

EndoplasmicReticulum Tue 09-Oct-12 07:04:25

Knowsabit - if you read the posts from teachers you will see that a secondary science teacher may have 300 books per week to mark. And that "dedicating a few minutes per child per week" therefore becomes logistically impossible.

Could it be that teachers in independent schools can do this because they have fewer books to mark, maybe?

FourArms Tue 09-Oct-12 06:56:22

We'd be closer to 300 book each week in Science.. Simply not possible in a meaningful way. We do a third peer, a third self and a third teacher assessed. However, I have marked every classes books since the start of term.

Knowsabitabouteducation Mon 08-Oct-12 21:30:37


I am glad my children are in independent schools where their teachers don't begrudge them when marking their books.

Independent school teachers are not slaves to three-letter-acronyms, but, thankfully, are happy to dedicate a few minutes per child per week, without keeping count.

IMPE, it is a lot easier to mark weekly rather than fortnightly. There is no economy of time.

blondefriend Mon 08-Oct-12 21:26:02

Only 150 books. A FT science teacher in my school would teach 10 classes, multiplied by 30 students per class equals 300 books. This is one of the reasons I set a bigger piece of work less often. I just couldn't do it.

freerangeeggs Mon 08-Oct-12 21:20:43

"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. "

That would be 150 books a week for me. If we say 5 mins per book, that's 12.5 hours of marking every week. In addition to planning and, er, teaching.

"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. "

Really? Do you ever read any educational research - Wiliam, Hattie, those guys? Because it seems a shame that a powerful tool like peer assessment should be overlooked because you saw it used badly.

phlebas Mon 08-Oct-12 07:47:37

As far as I can tell dd (y7) seems to get one assessed piece of work per subject per half term. So far she has done English, science, history & maths with French & Art due in soon. Nothing has been marked so far because A level, BTEC & GCSE work takes priority. Well not marked by a teacher anyway - there's been plenty of peer marking, but I'm not sure that dd or I find Dan P's comments on her use of paragraphs helpful (dd says all the kds cheat or just mark randomly 'for fun' anyway).

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?

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.

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.

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 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.

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


I think we agree Felicity smile

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

They should have been marked by now.

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'.

"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 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.

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.

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!

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

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 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

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.

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?)

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