I’ve been thinking about what makes-up a typical report card mark for an English class:

  • Something like equal parts projects and (in-class) essays;
  • A bit of homework;
  • And maybe an optional dash of participation.

Would this alternative work?  What if a term mark was based on the following focus areas instead?

  • Writing (or writing process?)
  • Reading comprehension
  • Analysis/critical thinking
  • Oral communication

Assignments and products could be classified into one or maybe two of those areas. (So a ‘reader response journal’ could count towards Writing as well as Analysis.)

Participation would be a given (expected either in class, and/or maybe through an online forum).


Since I’ll be heading back into a regular English classroom this year, I’ve been struggling with the fact that each student will need a letter grade and percentage on his/her report card each term.

It’d be traditional for me to have bins in BCeSIS for essays, projects, homework, participation, etc.

But I wonder if that sort of mark breakdown misleads students and parents into thinking English is just about the end-products?

I’d rather emphasize development of skills, and I’m frustrated by how reporting by letter grade can feel unfair, inaccurate and a bit contrived.

But I’m not sure what to do to work within this system, and I don’t know if the alternative bins that I’m mulling over would be right either.