As an English teacher, I always wanted ways to limit the papers I had to lug around. It can be a mess, and at times I had a fear of losing what my students had spent (hopefully) many hours creating. I longed for the electronic submission days, but I always wondered how to find an easy and effective way to grade these and return them electronically with my notations.
Well, in steps a blog post from The Visual Lounge. This blog is mostly about making screencasts of different things, but the one that caught my eye concerns Alisa Cooper, an English professor at Maricopa Community College. Alisa takes you through the steps of creating a custom grading toolbar to add to your Word toolbar area. It is a great little tool. As usual, there will be a little bit of time needed to start with, but once it is in place, it is ready to go for every paper you grade.
So take a look at the screencast here and take a shot at making your own. Have your kids submit their essays electronically to you one time. Assess them using your new toolbar and send them back to them. I view this as more of a conference stage than maybe a final draft grading, but you can decide what works best for you. Let me know how it goes.
And if you are interested in making your own screencasts like Alisa, shoot me an email or a comment below. I’ll see what I can come up with for you.