Kathleen + Caren

Are on the Map

Meet Caren and Kathleen, authors of the book Rethinking Letter Grades and master educators. Their goal, to provide the best learning environments for students, motivated them to create a five-step process of teaching and assessing using “Learning Maps.” This process, creating “big ideas,” describing levels of performance, and selecting and matching evidence of learning to descriptions, clearly showed students their strengths and helped them to succeed.

Building and using learning maps is the foundation of QUIO. Creating learning maps may be a new process for you, and you may have questions along the way. We have provided FAQ here for you, but if you don’t find what you are looking for, just ask. Caren and Kathleen are here to answer your questions.

We have to use an electronic grade book. How can technology help us use this five-step process? What do you do?

First, we don’t use any grade-book program for the purposes of totalling, averaging, ranking, converting, or deciding the letter grade. We are the teachers, and we determine the letter grade. We worry when electronic programs, in effect, become the “grade maker” and the teacher simply inputs the data without interpreting it.

However, we do use technology to track each student’s overall collection of evidence, which we organize under each of the Big Ideas headings rather than under assignments and tests.

In our experience, technology such as electronic grade books are good at keeping track of numbers but do not keep track of the wide variety of evidence that is needed to assess twenty-first century learning standards.

However, new assessment applications such as quio Learning Map have the capability of reflecting the ongoing changes that are taking place in assessment practices today.

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