I am about to start grading a pile of Latin and Greek papers. I hate it. I don’t hate it because of the work it represents. After all, grading papers is a good deal for me. Grading papers makes me very good at Latin and Greek. As I scroll through, looking for mistakes, I get faster and faster at my target languages.
But, grading doesn’t work for the students. Not in my opinion. I am not the only one who thinks this way.
Peter Diamandis, tech blogger and founder of Singularity University agrees with me on this one:
“In the traditional education system, you start at an “A,” and every time you get something wrong, your score gets lower and lower. At best it’s demotivating, and at worst it has nothing to do with the world you occupy as an adult. In the gaming world (e.g. Angry Birds), it’s just the opposite. You start with zero and every time you come up with something right, your score gets higher and higher.”
This is exactly how I grade my students. They all start at A, and drop with every mistake.
I am desperately looking for another way. I want to turn Latin into a game. Students advance as they learn, and they enjoy it.
Unfortunately, from September to May, I am so busy grading, there is little time left to innovate.
I will continue to write down ideas. I hope to implement these ideas during the summer.
If you have any ideas, I would love to hear them.