Saturday, 15 October 2011

Taking a Back Seat...

Source: Microsoft Office


I've been putting all my energies into marking public exam papers and training level one teachers recently so my blogging activities have had to take a back seat. I'm deeply sorry for leaving you, my dear readers in the lurch for a week.


Instead of keeping to a few posts a week, I  manage mere a post a week. But, I always believe in this ...something is always better than nothing! Don't you think so? As for this post which is also my 100th post, I'll only confide in you about the exam-marking...


There is nothing glamorous in wading through piles of scripts, particularly on a hot tropical evening, with the soap opera beckoning. But it is important work, calling for precision, professionalism and, up to a point, compassion. Marking scripts can be pretty monotonous. But you get occasional dramatic glimpses into the lives of the pupils. I can remember one paper with only a plea scrawled across the sheet...PLEASE GIVE ME SOME MARKS. I DON'T KNOW THE ANSWERS. THANK YOU. 


I get a curious good feeling out of marking papers. Sometimes it can be quite frustrating. Again and again, you see pupils not doing themselves justice. Their exam technique is poor and they made mostly some of the 'silliest mistakes' on earth. But from a professional point of view, it is a great opportunity to see how the work that goes on in the classroom stands up to external examination.


These are among the things that I as a teacher hate to see in the scripts I'm marking:
  • Handwritings that look like chicken's scratch.
  • Dreadful spelling, punctuation and grammar.
  • Direct translations from mother-tongue to English.
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A question for teachers: 
What do you look for when you mark your pupils' exam scripts?


A question for parents:
If you were given a chance to whisper a word or two to your kids' examiners,
what will you say to them?

5 comments:

Kaz said...

Welcome back dear, I truly miss reading your blog Chinda.
As an examiner, I would like to see a proof of the effort put by the candidates in learning the subject and answering the questions. As I am marking the matric students' exam paper who have learned English for more than 11 years, I would expect them to have at least a good basic in the language areas such as grammar and simple vocabulary. But most of the time, I am frustrated with my own expectation.....

Sophyta said...

Dear Kaz, it's normal...don't talk about your matric students who have only learned English for 11 years...I've even crossed path with a Phd student who couldn't comprehend simple task...and what he did was...merely beating around the bush. This is a true story and it took place when I did the training of kssr teachers...

mas said...

hi dear,
when u mentioned abt one phd students,i remember one (that time he was jst planng to apply for phd)and i dnt knw wthr we are talking abt the same person or not).he was my course participant for mbmmbi- as I was called to help out jpn to conduct the course last year. he really irritated me,the jpn officers,the jus and cps for his all mighty knowing in everything when it came to complaining the others' POV but he dared not present anything.

mas said...

sorry one phd student

Sophyta said...

Dear Mas,
I think we're aiming at the same bird. It's the case of all bark but no bite...

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