November 17, 2008


Today all of the students I teach in the senior school sat their NCEA exams because today was biology day. I haven't seen any of the exams, but the word from the few students I did see was that there were no surprises... Which is good. It is really hard to prepare students for surprise exams - how do you know what to teach them? Sure, I could take the high moral ground and give them a good general education, but there is pretty questionable morality in not giving my charges the best possible chance to pass the exam. Which is what they and their parents care about. That's the ticket that will get them into the places they want to go. Not many universities actively seek out the generally educated, but completely unqualified...
The junior exams I set for the kids also seem to have worked well. There are a spread of marks, and most are around the middle. Those who have worked the hardest have done the best with one notable exception.
The exception is a boy who has a reading age of about five (he is fourteen or fifteen). This year he has not done any science at all. Not attended any classes. His maths is pretty average (not as bad as his reading but not high school level), and he has got better marks than anyone in my average band class. He had a reader/writer that is known for being very kind. So one of my jobs tomorrow is to try and work out how much help our VERY kind reader/writer who has a science background has given my limited student.
I very much like this time of the year when I don't have many classes to teach - today I had one and tomorrow I have two. It won't be half as good next year, as I am going to be teaching two religious education classes at the junior level, so I won't be losing many classes at all...

Posted by Toni at November 17, 2008 06:47 PM