School Grades Are The Wrong Way Around

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Andrzej Marczewski

Gamification Expert, author, consultant and designer. I love to write about it, talk about it and bore people to death with it! If you really want to get to know me, check out the About page.

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5 Responses

  1. This makes a lot of sense and would be a lot more engaging for most kids. You could go further and create skill trees that emphasise different attributes you want kids to value – not just academic stuff – attitude, kindness to others, healthy eating etc.

  2. mcmc says:

    XP points in games are both about achievement (one off outstanding things) and grinding (doing the same thing over and over). While both should be rewarded in school, if grades are to represent learning, then they should focus on achievement (which could include a “good grinder” achievement).

    There are educational systems where students can see the marks allocated for each upcoming assessment in advance, and even some where they get to see (at least broad) rubrics as well. It’s standard for 17-18 year old secondary education and virtually all technical education in Australia, for example.

    There should be more of it.

  3. Exactly my thoughts. I work with disadvantaged students (slight learning disabilities, behaviour problems, minorities…) and we have been able to give them a chance to be protagonists of their learning and do things they have never even considered. Honestly, there’s people you can’t reach but, overall, it really works!

  4. You’ve pretty much nailed the way I evaluate my students 😉 Actually, in the app we just developed, that’s exactly our take: create an understandable system, let them know how it exactly works (what is the goal(s), what they need to get their “points”, how much they get in every different activity, f.e. I give them a number of points for their daily work and their attitude in class, I also create missions or challenges with their own bonuses…) and give them regular feedback. As a teacher, I think that students need to be able to make their own informed choices and that also contributes to developing a sense of responsibility (and not thinking the whole world is a conspiracy agains them so they are not responsible for anything).

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