Day Three, Smarter Balanced Testing

Day Three, in which the bullies get the boot.  Yesterday we finished the online portions of ELA and Math, and today it was time for the Performance Task. This is a pretty okay lesson, actually.  It is about the use of technology in the classroom. In preparation for the online portion, we do an in-class lesson. The students are in groups, and they brainstorm and discuss and contribute to class discussions. The majority of the class was excited about it and followed the instructions well, participating orally as needed. All but one group was excited about it and having fun with it.

The other group, with Mikey and Sweet Basil and one other boy, just weren’t having it. They were loud and off task and disrupting the process from beginning to end. I let it go on a little too long, I know, because I thought I could bring them around. They’ve been good for two days, so I thought maybe a corner had been turned. But no. Finally, I sent them off with their referrals and the bell rang for lunch.

When we returned, we finished the discussion and then went off to the computer lab to begin the long and messy essay portion of the test. My students were aghast at the idea that they have to read ALL THAT in order to answer the questions. The amount of reading necessary to understand the writing task was huge as well, and they thought it must be a mistake. Surely they aren’t expected to read all that too?? And how much did they have to write? You mean it isn’t enough to write “I don’t understand this?” or “This sounds good to me?”

My work is cut out for me, I can see that!  As for the bullies, they’ll either step up or they won’t. My focus needs to be on the others, the ones who are actually willing to learn. And so it is. Day three is over.

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