Reflection: Self-Graded Rubrics Exploring Magnetic Levitation - Section 4: Explain: The Design Problem


The creation of rubrics is a huge time killer for teachers. I stopped doing all the work and made rubric generators out of my students. Typically I introduce an activity and after they had some time to get going, I stop and ask them to help me with the rubric. The students know what is expected of them and if I have given them some time to work at it, they can share with me the criteria for grades. I use three headings: Above Average, Average, and Points Off. Above average is A/B so they don't really know what the difference between the two are but neither do I. There is such a fine line between the two grades. I give myself wiggle room by adding Insightful/Clever. I explain to the students insightful means making unusual or surprising connections. This helps me because sometimes a child will make a brilliant comment not covered in the rubric. Just because I didn't anticipate it doesn't mean he doesn't deserve the credit. This is also great for modifications for students with special needs. It allows me to assess them at their level. 

Many students never looked at chart style rubrics. I started using a checklist rubric with NGSS and Common Core vocabulary tags at the end of the line. I put the tags there to help kids generalize rubric language over settings. When students turn in an assignment, they must fill out the checklist. To assess the project, I circle the evidence they have produced. 

  Rubric Checklists
  Self-Graded Rubrics: Rubric Checklists
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Exploring Magnetic Levitation

Unit 2: Generating Energy
Lesson 4 of 5

Objective: SWBAT test a conceptual model to explore how magnetic potential energy can be used as a fossil-fuel-free alternative to train transportation.

Big Idea: Watch as your students experience the magic of magnetics while exploring a futuristic transportation modality.

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magnetic levitation
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