I don't grade homework or notebooks. I don't have time and I don't want to put so much emphasis on homework that students want to copy. (I wrote a lot more about homework here.) However, I had a lot of trouble getting students to do the work required to get the learning.
Because of that I chose a unit and planned to have students do an Agenda assignment in preparation for the test. I gave them an "agenda" with lots of options for tasks to complete. (By the way, creating the agenda was a LOT of work for me.) They got to choose which ones to do in order to earn x points. They had class time to work, but were expected to complete some if it out of class. They had to have it completed BEFORE they could take the test. This was pretty unsuccessful. Students hated the agenda, to put it nicely.
I've been debating all summer how to hold students accountable for doing the work, but I knew that agendas probably weren't going to work. There is something similar I'd heard of called "menus", but I'm not really sure they would be any better. So I had a problem with no solution, and that is one of the reasons I was so excited to read Steph's post.
Here are the things I like about the checklist:
- Can be built as we go, so I don't have to plan everything out ahead of time
- Can include whatever I want, even notebook pages
- It won't overwhelm students at the beginning because it will be empty
- It will give students things to work on if they finish something else early
- It will remind students of things that we have done that they have forgotten about
Anyway, I liked the idea so much that I am fairly certain it is the solution to many of my problems. I wanted to link the assignments to specific learning targets, so I added a column that Steph didn't have in hers. I also typed up some instructions, but didn't want to have to include them on the actual checklist, so I think I will make them notebook friendly and tape them in the front of our notebooks with our syllabus, bellwork schedule, and classroom expectations.
Since I made the documents, I'm going to go ahead and call them my #Made4Math Monday, but I totally stole it from Steph as stated above, so please read her post!
Note: These files will open in google drive and you will have to download them to edit them in Microsoft word.