When it comes to report card time, filling out paperwork is as simple as can be. (Our PSP requires report cards, not the state; just to clarify this point.) In the grades column, I hit the caps lock button and keep my finger on the letter “A”; I run straight down the page and stop when I get to the end.
To some, this might seem ridiculous. All “A’s”; really? But don’t get the wrong idea, my kids never get an easy “A”! It is our method which affords our children the grades they earn.
As homeschoolers, there is very little (if any) work my children accomplish that doesn’t meet my eye. We are together almost non-stop; twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week, 365 days a year. (Frankly, I wouldn’t have it any other way.)
Because of this, I know exactly how they are progressing and which areas need immediate work. A large part of their success is also due to our mastery method of learning. They earn the “A” because they do not move forward until an “A” can be achieved. Anything less than an “A” would be impossible.
So how do we know when our children have mastered an area of study? Easy; they have mastered an area when they, in turn, can teach it to someone else. The lesson becomes second nature to them and they could work blindfolded, if need be.
Our children’s grades are not calculated based on testing alone. Apart from assigned lessons, they are also expected to meet individual standards of achievement, participation, and show good conduct.
As you can see… there is nothing easy about their “A”!
What’s funny, is that our kids have no idea they are being graded; not really. The only thing they understand is that they should do all their work to the best of their ability and give life their all. That’s it! If I happen to mention, off-hand, what “grade” they earned, it means very little to them. The only thing that concerns them is doing better next time; if it is possible.
Sometimes I wonder what other people might think when they look at our kids’ paperwork. “Sure, Cris, your kids got straight “A’s” all through their schooling. Right!” However, I think “the proof is in the pudding”. The kids’ level of achievement and their attitudes toward learning speak for themselves.
It will be interesting to see how they do when they begin to take college courses come high school. When someone else is grading them and setting the standards, will they be shocked (either way) to find out how they are doing? I would like to think they will rise to the occasion and exceed even their own expectations.
If you file report cards; by what standard do you give an “A”?