Why Your Language Teacher Failed You

I have WordPress set to automatically post to Facebook, which means many of you reading this aren’t even language teachers. Allow me, then, to explain why you don’t know the language you studied in school (unless, of course, you were lucky enough to have spent time abroad, or to have found yourself exposed to the language in some meaningful way, thus, correcting decades of misinformed pedagogy still pervasive today)…

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Grading Scheme: DEA & Proficiency

**See this post for all other grading schemes*

Here’s a new idea inspired by advice I was giving on various DEA and Proficiency grading weights. In other posts, I’ve written how my DEA weight has been anywhere from 0% to 50% of the grade. You could also try this sliding scale throughout the year…

Quarter 1
DEA = 100%
Proficiency = 0%

Quarter 2
DEA = 50%
Proficiency = 50%

Quarter 3
DEA = 10%
Proficiency = 90%

Quarter 4
DEA = 0%
Proficiency = 100%

A grading scheme like this would establish very clear expectations of how important it is to exhibit behaviors and routines that lead to language acquisition in class (e.g. Look, Listen, Ask). This would work best if you have the admin support to manually override the final grade with just one Proficiency grade from Quarter 4, as suggested in other iterations of my grading systems. Why? We don’t reaaaaally want the 4 quarters to be averaged, but if they are it’s not the end of the world. This kind of grade is far more forgiving so the focus can be on input and not assessments.
N.B. Proficiency is given 0% weight at the start of the year. This doesn’t mean that students see “0” in the gradebook. What this means is that their 95, which they see in the gradebook, holds 0% weight because in the sliding scale scheme we’ve placed all 100% weight on DEA for first quarter in order to set expectations and establish routines.