Saturday, October 29, 2011

Red Pen Reflection

I have learned many things from Rick Lavoie. One of the most important is to remember that I never struggled in school, so I cannot know how it feels to constantly have my work returned covered with glaring red marks. Recently, when faced with returning just such a math test for corrections, I decided to try something else. I had watched the student accurately complete four math activities online and noticed that he only saw one problem at a time. Thinking that a page of problems might be what was overwhelming him, I wrote each incorrect problem on an index card. The next morning, I asked him to do some math review with the cards, letting him choose the order. He completed them all correctly. It got me to wondering how he would have done on the original test if the problems had been given to him one at a time. Perhaps presentation, rather than content, causes some students' failure to demonstrate their knowledge. Are we setting them up to fail?