221 – Here’s Your Permission to STOP CHASING Missing Student Assignments

The reality: not every student has submitted the required products for a particular learning activity by the due date or deadline. What should the responsible teacher do?
Here’s how some teachers respond:
They update checklists of unsubmitted assignments on a weekly or daily basis.
They regularly post names of students whose work is overdue on the classroom whiteboard or digital equivalents. Missing essays: Brian, Jackie, Solomon, Jenny, Stefan.
They meet 1:1 with the students whose work is missing.
They email students or send direct reminders via the LMS.
They set up special study hall sessions (at recess breaks, lunch breaks, or after school) that offending students must attend in order to complete and submit all required assignments.
They email parents to inform them of the specific assignments that their children have not submitted.
These teachers mean well. And some of these measures have their place, at least in spirit.
But it’s also true that this pattern of teacher behavior can become a bottomless pit. All of the tracking and communication I’ve listed here can take huge amounts of time on top of everything else a teacher must do week in and week out.
Welcome to SPARKS: mini-segments intended to spark your thinking and ignite your practice. These short episodes are based on my written reflections, which you can find on the Teachers on Fire Magazine at Medium.com.
Read the blog post featured in this episode at https://medium.com/teachers-on-fire/heres-your-permission-to-stop-chasing-missing-student-assignments-c5685c526441.
My name is Tim Cavey, and I’m proud to contribute to the education conversation through the Teachers on Fire podcast. Make sure to connect with me @TeachersOnFire on Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook to catch more from me and hear from amazing educators who are bringing growth and transformation to K-12 education today.
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