Designing a Class Discussion

Assignment Overview

     In this assignment, I created a class discussion that emulates a Socratic seminar.  I chose grading practices as my discussion topic because it's a subject that I
     feel needs to be addressed.

Assignment:  Grading Practices Class Discussion


  1. Read Effective Grading Practices by Douglas Reeves .  In the article, Reeves identifies three commonly used grading practices as being “toxic”.  
    1. The use of zeros for missing work
    2. Averaging grades throughout the semester
    3. One assignment that will determine success or failure in a class
  2. Watch the video,   Rick Wormeli: On Late Work,

YouTube Video

3.  Read, “6. Give deadliness” in  “ 10 Things I've Learned About Teaching Online”  By Michelle Everson, University of Minnesota

Answer the Following Questions

  1. Do you agree or disagree with the “three toxic” grading practices?  Why or why not?
  2. Should teachers accept late work?  Why or why not?
  3. Do you think that grading policy is linked to school reform?  Why or why not?


  1. Respond to at least two posts by asking   “Why?  . . .. How come? ….. I wonder? ….  Or What if …?” or use one of the discussion stems in the Resources section below

Grading Rubric


 4 points/Excellent

3 points/Satisfactory

2 point/Unsatisfactory

Answers questions

Answers questions completely and thoughtfully from information in the video

Answers questions but answers are not complete and/or thoughtfully from information in the video

Answers some questions from the video

Stays on topic

Stays on topic and adds information to the discussion

Stays on topic but doesn't add  information

Gets off topic and doesn't add information

Number of posts

Responds to question(s) and two classmate posts

Responds to question(s) and one classmate post

One post

Adds to the Discussion

Digs deeper in the discussion—asks questions of classmates

Posts do not dig deeper—and do not add to the discussion

Says "I agree" and doesn't not add to the discussion

Academic English

Uses complete sentences and correct grammar

Incomplete sentences and/or a few grammar errors

Doesn't use complete sentences and/or many grammar errors

* Posts must show evidence that you've read the article or watched the video

Discussion Resources

Discussion Stems