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Should I Give My Student Pass/Fail Grades?

Should I Give My Student Pass/Fail Grades?
Should you use letter, number or pass/fail grades on your homeschool transcript?




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Grading Estimate

Grading Estimate
Let me guess.  You didn't use tests on all your homeschool subjects, right?  Neither did I! And yet, somehow, my children survived!

 



Some homeschoolers think it's tons of fun to go back through four years of high school records and try to find or recreate every possible test, quiz, and assignment.  For me, that doesn't sound like fun.  I was not one of those people.  Plus I've noticed that even when parents do some forensic grading like that, it doesn't really change what they know to be true.  If you are not a tester in your homeschool, look beyond tests, and think of how you have evaluated.

Because not all homeschoolers use tests, I have created a quick grading estimate for homeschool parents.

Grade A or 4.0
Mastery
Meets high expectations
High standardized test scores
Child love subject

Grade B or 3.0 
Pretty good
Not worth an A
Tempted to do it again

Grade C or 2.0
Not very good
Kept going to the next level

This is one of piece of a Gold Care Club monthly webinar.  They are tons of fun!  I hope some day you'll join me!  You can read more about the Gold Care Club here: The HomeScholar Gold Care Club.



Another feature of the Gold Care Club is the opportunity to ask your biggest questions about homeschooling high school.
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Reconsidering Homeschool Grades

Reconsidering Homeschool Grades

Are your grades too low?


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College Admissions: Are Work Samples Required?

College Admissions: Are Work Samples Required?
It's difficult to know exactly what records to keep and exactly how to keep them.  Colleges may want to see samples of work, so always be prepared.



I have been wondering something as I am attempting to collect samples for the end of the year.  Did you ensure that your samples you kept for transcripts were marked?  As in edits, grades, etc?  I have a habit of marking on work but wonder if I should keep clean copies of everything? Did you send in the original?  Also, in your "binder" world, did you keep most everything they produced?  If not, how did you find the courage to pitch anything?  Guess I'm a tubby at  heart...
~Rebecca

As far as samples, I think colleges prefer having something that looks like it has been graded;  a math test, an English paper with some markings on it.  Just remember you can choose to save the BEST math test and the BEST English paper.  I didn't keep everything, but I did try to have something for every class, plus I tried to keep all the BIG things.  I kept final drafts of papers, but not every worksheet.  I kept the final math tests, but not the daily work.  If you are nervous about keeping things, think about how many colleges you might apply to.  Keep as many things as there are colleges you apply to - and more than that may be more than you need.  But you do want to keep enough to write a course description, even if you NEVER give it all to colleges.

I send the colleges one writing sample along with the course descriptions. That writing sample was not the original, it was just printed from the computer, and included after the the course descriptions.   If a college asked me for a sample from a class, then I would send them an original.  One college asked for a lab write-up, another asked for an English paper, and a third asked for a math paper in student handwriting.  It wasn't difficult, but I was certainly glad that I kept a sample from every course!



I have a new homeschool high school Twitter site.  Get all the homeschool posts of parents homeschooling high school by joining my Twibe.
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The HomeScholar Total Transcript Solution Launches at Noon!!

The HomeScholar Total Transcript Solution Launches at Noon!!
Noon (Pacific Time) is the official launch of our Total Transcript Solution.  We will be having a free webinar this morning to celebrate.  You can sign up for "Credits and Grades and Transcripts, Oh My!!" at this registration link.  You are NOT going to want to miss this hour long content rich webinar.



Register for our free webinar this morning on Credits, Grades and Transcripts!
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What is the "Right Way" to Grade?

What is the "Right Way" to Grade?
People sometimes ask homeschoolers "Where do you get THE curriculum".  It's funny, because there are so many curriculum choices and everyone does it differently, and homeschoolers know there is not ONE curriculum.  The same is true, though, when you ask "How do public schools grade classes?"  Because every class, every teacher, and every high school is different.  Public school teachers know there is not one "right" answer to that question.



What is your advice about the percentage each portion of the course receives?   Not to compare to public schools, but are the unit tests worth 50 % and the other parts of the course the other 50%? Or should the unit test/final tests be worth more?   I know you said that there are other factors with the final grade.
~ Audrey in Pennsylvania

Dear Audrey,

Most schools use a proportion of the grade that represents tests.  Some may use 50% for tests, others 25%.  I don't really think it matters, actually, because I've seen teachers do it MANY MANY MANY ways.  If you google "High School Syllabus" you'll find a gazillion different ways to do it.

Here is one example for a teacher who is using Discovering Geometry: An Inductive Approach, by Michael Serra.  Read his math syllabus.

In this public school example, he uses 30% for tests, 70% for homework.   The tests section isn't for ALL the tests, either.  He will drop the lowest grade on 1 out of 4 tests.  And you can actually earn extra credit points, too, which can account for an additional 10%.

It's also interesting to look at his grading scale.  Although he has variations on what an A grade means, he does essentially give the scale of A = 90-100% on a test.

Remember, I only looked at this example because it was the first one in my google search.  If you look at other examples, they will probably all be different.

You certainly don't have to do it this way, or any other way.  As I said, there are lots of right ways to do it.  Homeschool parents can determine their own grading criteria and grading scale to use on their homeschool transcript.



Homeschooling is NOT the same as doing schoolwork at home.  There is LOTS of freedom!  My Gold Care Club will give you all the help you need to succeed!
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