Making Rubrics To Grade Students.
Make Everyone Accountable!!

Making rubrics/rubric design and using grading rubrics are relatively new kinds of concepts in teaching.

For years, I like other professionals, laid the groundwork verbally for what we wanted our students to achieve on assignments and projects.

Now they have become a requirement, to be used as a standard of assessment for student achievement, that I truly believe are essential and fabulous tools!

Rubrics make the teacher, the students and even the parents accountable.

You, as a teacher, can pick and choose what you are looking for in your students' work and incorporate these requirements in your grading rubrics.

But when you are making your sample rubrics promise me one thing ... don't go crazy, nuts and overboard!

Create a few standard rubric templates first. Then after deciding exactly what you want your students to achieve by doing an assignment (project, book report, science experiment, presentation, whatever), create one (or maybe more) scoring rubrics from these rubric samples/templates with the required criteria for each specific assignment.

I would always present the rubric to my students and reviewed it with them thoroughly; answering questions, giving examples on the blackboard or chart paper. (Using chart paper is advantageous, because you can leave up the examples for students to refer to.)

I also tell my students that they all start off with an "A+". it's up to them following the rubric to maintain that mark or lose marks if they don't.

The other thing I do is send the rubric home to the parents, have them sign off on it (to give them a good idea of what is required from their child)and returned to me. (Of course, this is written into the students' agenda).

Making rubrics can be simple (for primary grades) or more challenging (for junior grades). When you create the various rubric samples, always keep in mind the report card comments; i.e., the expectations that you are using for the term.

As the "rubric maker" you can incorporate these expectations into your grading rubrics. For example eye contact and how students vary their voice are important criteria to consider when making rubrics for presentations.

Rubrics - use them, don't abuse them. You don't want to become an "annoying rubric maker" and have your students say "Not another rubric!"

Another idea that I used on presentation days when students presented to their peers was to create a mini-rubric for the students to fill out as each person presented. Three reasons for this:

1. Keep their attention.

2. Give them something to do.

3. I found it interesting to get their perspective on their fellow students' presentation and material.

You too can become a great "rubric maker"! You may find it a lot of work in the beginning but , the benefits are huge and worth it.

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