Friday, September 26, 2008

Editing Until it's Right

I was reading the NYC Educator's Blog when I came upon this post. He told this story about one of his students.

I looked at the kid's paper, and there wasn't a capital letter on it. This freaked me out a little, since I know for a fact they use them in his native language.

"Didn't your first-grade teacher tell you to use big letters when you start sentences?" I asked, pointing to the first letter of the first paragraph, a plainly lower-case "t."

"Yes, but I forget."

"Well, remember," I said.

15 minutes later I went back, and the kid had corrected only that first letter.

"You want me to do all of them?" he asked.

"Of course," I told him.

He resigned himself to the miserable task. When I came back, he had capitalized the first letter of every line, without regard to where the sentences had begun.

He probably didn't anticipate my being cruel enough to make him rewrite the whole thing. But goshdarn it, it's all part of the learning process.

As students finish up letters today, I wonder how many will turn in papers with simple mistakes, that they know how to correct?

Based on the grades that students have been earning on their weekly WTC (Words that Count) assignment, I imagine there will be some low grades due to lack of effort editing.

Maybe we should take a page from the NCY Educator, and just keep doing it until they are done correctly.


Anonymous said...

I think it's a good idea because when my mom makes me redo my paper it makes me try harder so I won't have to do it again. It works for us.

Anonymous said...

I think it is a good idea to make people redo a paper if it has to many mistakes. If someone turns a paper in and it has too many mistakes, I think they deserve to do it over again. I have a question for you, How many mistakes is too many? I know you said that it's zero tolerance, but what if someone turns in a paper with two or three mistakes, are you going to make that person do it over again? Will you let that person off the hook? That's all I want to know.

Anonymous said...

I think that it is a good idea because some people don't care if they get a bad grade so they don't een try

Anonymous said...

I think that is a good idea because some people care about their grade and if they miss some mistakes they can just go back and re-do it so they don't get a bad grade.

Anonymous said...

I think that making people redo there paper is a good idea. The reason I think that is a good idea because people think it is OK to get bad grades as long as they don't have to do the assignment . But its not OK. So I think it is a good idea so people don't get away with sloppy work.