I'm in a new k-5 school this year and I understand that my predecessor was a
really tough grader. Several parents had questions in past years and had
complained, "What does my child have to do to get an O in art ??!!) PE was
just as tough. We give O for Outstanding, S - Satisfactory and N-needs
improvement and that's it. This is a very high-test-scoring school with many
kids testing as GT and very supportive and involved parents.
In my former (rougher) school, I basically gave O's to students that showed
up, tried everything, cooperated, demonstrated an understanding of the art
objectives, included the things I was asking them to include, were
respectful, didn't throw objects, curse me and didn't carry on loud, rude
conversations while I was giving directions.
In the new school, all the children are respectful, eager to try everything,
take pains to include the things they need to, finish the projects, are
cooperative and follow directions. Basically, a dream school. (And yes, I
know I am lucky.) They work hard to attain good grades as it is important to
them and their families and I am at a loss as how to grade them. I don't
think they should have to struggle for an O in art.
I am sure to tell them that they needn't be 'talented' to get a good grade in
To me, an O equates to an A or a B and an S is closer to a C. An N would be
a child that doesn't do the work or try to complete it. I guess that's my
problem and I am worried that I might be considered an 'easy' grader. But
then again, this is still elementary art and why should they be