I think I need to give my kids a “test” on how to read the directions to a worksheet/quiz. I am grading their theory quizzes from today, and across all grade levels they just aren’t reading directions.
Their grades would be so much better if they just took the extra 20 seconds per question to…
Don’t test them- teach them first. I know it seems trivial and basic and omg what kind of kid doesn’t understand this already?! Answer: a lot of them. We had a HUGE influx of students who had been homeschooled up until my grade. We also had kids come in from other schools that had different expectations. So we set up rules for how to turn in work. The first one is that every paper must have first and last name and the date on it. Is it missing one of those? Hand it right back without looking at anything else. Walk through how to do assignments together. Not just once. Multiple times. Give them verbal AND written instructions. My classroom management and students’ grades went waaaay up when I gave two forms of instruction. Teach them how to annotate and then have them annotate every worksheet so they understand every part. I taught my kids to annotate within the first couple of weeks and just about every 7th grade teacher, arts and humanities included, heard the question, “Are we allowed to annotate this passage?” I know it seems simple, but if they aren’t proving that they have the skills, cover all your bases and give them no excuses- teach them the skills!
Interestingly, the 6th graders who have never been taught by me are the best at following directions. And the 8th graders? This is their third year with me. My methods haven’t changed, yet they are the class with the biggest problem following directions.
All of your suggestions? I already do these things. Every time we have something to hand in, I tell them at least 5 times to make sure they have their first and last name, etc. Then when they hand it in without complete information, I hand it back immediately. I read directions to them as well as explain them for every section of the worksheet or test. We have done the theory “test” as a worksheet more than once as a class and then corrected it so that all directions are followed. So they know what I want.