Montessori World

An educational blog for children and adults

Grades and Assignment.

If there is so much evidence that grades don’t matter, why are they still used for assessment?

I, for one, am not a believer of grades or assessment with the intention of giving children marks or any kind of numerable measuring scale of a person’s ability, progress or achievement in life. I do not understand why is there a need to prepare questions based on notes given in a lecture to test whether the student understands the lecture notes by reflecting, interpreting and translating the information into a language that other readers can read and understand.

The worst happens when students fail a particular exam and do not know how to bounce back to move forward in life, on the same path or a different one. History has shown us again and again through many famous people that academic success does not equal to more successes in life. For instance, Richard Branson, Thomas Edison and Isaac Newton were all poor students; Winston Churchill failed the sixth grade;  Charles Darwin and Carl Jung were labelled “stupid” by their teachers; Louis Pasteur was the first from the bottom in his college; Leo Tolstoy flunked his test and  Louisa May Alcott was told she was never fit to become a writer.

Today, look into the circle of friends you have, and identify the poor academic performers. Did their poor grades bring them nearer to the post of failure? Have they ever thrown back the piece of white cloth after flunking every single assessment during their formative period?

I don’t know why, but until today, I still strongly believe in the Montessori and other similar education systems that respect a child’s right to progress according to their own pace without falling down to the preys of examinations and grades. And hence, that is why I never regret not taking the local education teaching certification.


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April 10, 2011 - Posted by | Uncategorized

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