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Tuesday, May 16, 2017

Put up or shut up.

Sometimes you just gotta grade.

Today was one of those days.

I hate sitting down in my classroom.

So much so that I use a standing desk 99% of the time.

On the other hand, finals start in 8 days.

My students need to get their butts in gear.

Many still need to finish reading their novels.

There are six task sheets to complete.

A final project is required.

And then there's NaNoWriMo.

It is time for them to put up or shut up.

Using our time well is absolutely NOT optional.

At this point in the year, a little extra push is required.

I pushed them.

I pushed them a couple of different ways.

First, I remind them of the time constraints.

Literally, there is no more time to give them.

Then I informed them that I will not allow any student to attempt a final project who hasn't read "enough" of their novel.

I refuse to specify what "enough" actually means.

It's different for every kid.

Some are strong readers, some are weak.

Some are reading longer, more difficult texts. Some are not.

Some have access to audio versions. Some don't.

The point is, if you waste your time and don't read, I don't want to see a project from you.

It feels kind of mean, but it works. It works well.

The final piece of the puzzle is about grading.

This is where the sitting down part comes into play.

I told them I was grading while they worked.

When I asked them how easily distracted I was, they said "Very!"

I'm glad that, at least, is unanimous.

Then I told them I was grading their work during their hour.

And only during their hour.

If they distract me, well, that's sad, because the work they turn in won't be graded.

Is that really true?

No. Of course not.

But it is believable?

Oh yeah. I almost believe it.

The past couple of days have been both productive and extremely peaceful.


Unusual motivational tactics?


Good thing anyway?

You bet!

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