Dancing through life

About all the odd stuff that happens to me, a square head or cloggie as they say, down under.

Wednesday, November 29, 2006

13 things about marking papers

Thirteen Things about marking papers by Taconcubano

My number 2 is about a down side of my work. Maybe I should have stuck with my 'I never want to be a teacher' idea? ;-)

1. Marking papers takes up lots of time, especially time that was supposed to be free time, as in 'weekends' and 'evenings'.

2. I actually don't like it to award Fails.

3. Unfortunately I have to, too often.

4. Which makes you wonder: why not just give everybody a Pass? Or higher? Well, if that was possible, there wouldn't be much point in marking the papers in the first place. Which would be fine with me: let's change the rules.

5. This would not go well within our society though, which is very much focused on performance and proving to be the best, be it in school, sports, art, dance (tap dance competitions?????) or at bullying other countries about their idiosyncracies.

6. Hey, we have spelling contests for primary school children, for goodness sake! And aren't there the diploma's in kindergarten for being able to tie your shoelaces?

7. See, that's where it all starts, the obsession with grades and marks. Maybe even sooner, when parents are bragging about their children who 'already' can roll over, crawl or smile. (Meaning: my kid is better than yours, that still cannot perform these things.)

8. I think it is silly my uni only gives out grades, not marks, because students tend to give you a whole lot of hassle over 0.1 more if you do give them the marks. But we give them the marks anyway, we just don't tell them which ones. (I must admit this does save time arguing about them, but still.)

9. Students only complain about unfairness if they find your judgement to severe. If you give them a good grade for slack work, nobody complains (like: this is not fair to my classmates, please mark me down).

10. Marking is not too bad if students would write interesting papers, but those are a minority. Lots of people study efficiently, another Western based value: get the best result with the least effort.

11. You maybe wonder by now why I want to be a teacher? Well, I like the students and I like to work with them. Do it over being stuck in an office for 8.5 hours a day anytime. I just don't like marking papers. Or reports for that matter.

12. The reason I'm procrastinating here, from marking papers that is, is that is seems to be a real Sisyphus job (the ancient king who had to roll a big rock up a hill, only to have it roll down the other end, after which he had to start over): as soon as the pile is gone, there is a new pile turning up.

13. So I guess I have to put up with this part of the job. But only while protesting!

Links to other Thursday Thirteens!
1. caylynn

2. dragon heart

3. chaotic mom

4. chickadee

Get the Thursday Thirteen code here!

The purpose of the meme is to get to know everyone who participates a little bit better every Thursday. Visiting fellow Thirteeners is encouraged! If you participate, leave the link to your Thirteen in others comments. It’s easy, and fun! Be sure to update your Thirteen with links that are left for you, as well! I will link to everyone who participates and leaves a link to their 13 things. Trackbacks, pings, comment links accepted!


  • At 11:57 pm , Anonymous Anonymous said...

    Nice list.. happy TT!

  • At 1:17 am , Anonymous Anonymous said...

    Good luck with your paper marking! I'm embarrassed to admit I was one of those students who would argue over 0.1 of a mark. But I was at university on a scholarship, so sometimes that 0.1 was really important!

    Have a good day. :)

    Caylynn & Dragonheart

  • At 2:56 am , Blogger Chaotic Mom said...

    My second term of Organic Chem was SO HARD, that I failed every test. But I failed better than most and received an A! Thank goodness for the bell curve. Our prof was from India, and she was a hard nut. I LOVED her, though. ;)

    I've posted my Thursday Thirteen, too. Enjoy!

  • At 8:38 am , Anonymous Chickadee said...

    I have a few teacher friends and one of them is a math teacher. Last night she was grading papers on a "Redo" event. Evidently she had taught a lesson where a lot of the kids didn't catch on to the lesson. So she retaught the lesson, pointed out the mistakes commonly made on the papers and gave them a second chance and she said they were all making the same errors...again. She was very frustrated.

    Her school may be requiring the teachers to post grades online...as if teachers dont have enough to do already.

    My 13 are up.

  • At 12:52 pm , Anonymous Chickadee said...

    During the winter when the leaves are off the trees you can actually identify the type of tree by the twigs.

    You look at the placement of leaf buds, leaf scars (the places where the leaves fell off the twigs) and a maddening myriad of other characteristics.

    Twig Id sounds a lot simpler than it is (well, at least for me it's difficult at the moment. LOL) ...though some of it straight forward.

  • At 8:14 am , Anonymous Gabriella said...

    I understand what you mean by all 13 of those, especially numbers 9 through 12! *sigh*

  • At 2:08 pm , Anonymous Anonymous said...

    Fortunately I don't have to mark papers!
    Thanks for stopping by.


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