When the Grading Gets Tough…

None of my undergrad study could have formally prepared me for the daunting task of essay grading in a timely manner. I have been a bit of a blogging slacker over the past few days as my school post-assessment scores for the school year are due this week and have thus taken over my life. There are so many aspects of teaching which I deeply love, however, I’ve developed a bit of a loathe/hate relationship with grading.

Usually, I am so good about keeping my work and home separate, but there is no escape for bringing work home when you have less than a week to grade 110 essays. It also doesn’t help that I’m a bit of an over-thinker. What many teachers could probably grade in two minutes I take ten. Each precious word is a morsel from the mind of one of my budding students and I hate giving those thoughts any less than my full attention and concentration.

If you haven’t guessed I am in a bit of distraction mode. As I sit here updating you on my life I can feel the glare of the twenty essays that remain unread. I’ve created a list of ten things I would rather be doing. If doing the laundry exceeds grading on that list you know that I must harbor a strong dislike toward that activity.

The rubric terms have begun to run together. My hair has been twirled into near dreadlocks. My bright-colored grading pen is beginning to acquire bite marks. I’m sitting amongst an audience of notebook paper. These are symptoms of my excessive concentration. Twenty more to go. I can do this!

Other teachers–how do you beat the insanity undoubtedly associated with essay grading? I’m in desperate need of advice, and a second wind of motivation.

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