SOLC Day 18: Report Cards

March 2021 SOLC–Day 18
A huge thank you to Two Writing Teachers for all that they do to create an amazing community of writers and a safe, welcoming space to write, learn, share and grow.

I’m in the midst of end of the trimester grading and writing report cards. This year, more than ever, it feels so challenging and superficial to reduce a child’s school experiences to a series of numbers.

Report Cards

Building our classroom community
in the midst of a pandemic
distancing, masks, hybrid class
learning, laughing, growing
Express this all
in a few

©Molly Hogan

We’ve been back with our full class in-person five days a week for about two weeks now, and my students have navigated that as well as everything else that’s been thrown at them this year. They’ve triumphed in so many ways and a number tells such a small part of that story.

To my mind, these kids are unsung heroes, and they’ve simply stolen my heart.

This week’s Poetry Friday Roundup is hosted by the wonderful Linda Baie at her blog, Teacher Dance. Be sure to visit and check out the array of poetic offerings!

18 thoughts on “SOLC Day 18: Report Cards

  1. humbleswede says:

    Couldn’t agree more. The report cards, for me, required just holding my nose and jumping in. Then quickly moving on to what I would share at conferences. I like the way your poem becomes thinner and thinner as you reduce the year to numbers.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Impossible! And arbitrary and meaningless. I have been so frustrated this year with expectations to grade after years of teaching college with contract grading and self-grading. It hasn’t been something I’ve had the energy to tackle, but next year I will definitely be reinstituting contract grading and self-grading! I loved the shape of your poem and the power of that final line!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. What a great blog to send to your parents, whom I guessing love you already.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. kd0602 says:

    Yep. I ended up writing about data today–somehow related.



  5. lindabaie says:

    In my very first teaching job, first graders, we too were expected to give them grades. Things were very different then, much less over-reaching core rules. I gave them all A’s! Your poem’s beginnings tell the true story, & reducing it to numbers seems so wrong. I don’t know “how?”, either. Best wishes for continuing to celebrate those wonderful kids who really have been through something none of us ever imagined!


  6. It is an impossible task and so meaningless and yes, kids have had to be resourceful and brave. In India students are being passed with marks in the mid 90s when they haven’t sat an exam or any test after almost a year of no school. Ludicrous!


  7. bmagee10 says:

    I’m glad you are singing the praises of your ‘heroic’ students, Molly. In the broad spectrum of life, these numbers truly are meaningless, but a teacher like you is EVERYthing. 🙂


  8. janicescully says:

    Your students, you and other teachers and school workers are all heroes to me. Yes, it must seem strange and unfair to try to give the efforts of students, who have struggled against so much, a number.


  9. haitiruth says:

    Oh, you’re so right! Ruth,


  10. Maybe this needs to be a pass year of “A” year for all students, acknowledging that they all tried and made it through. I agree with you and don’t believe that a letter grade tells a picture of what they’ve done and accomplished. Your nonet reveals this all so succinctly. A while back I taught at a junior college and had to give grades, I never took it lightly, thanks Molly.


  11. macrush53 says:

    You are spot on, Molly. Students are so resilient. Love your Monet.


  12. maryleehahn says:

    More than any other year, my students have been my daily WHY. To put a number on all they’ve accomplished trivializes what we’ve been through and come through.


  13. Kay Mcgriff says:

    Report cards (and grades) were always hard for me when I was teaching. How can a number or letter tell of the complexity of learning and growth in reading and writing and community (or any subject and exploration). Best wishes as you finish out this topsy turvy year.


  14. Sux. I’m lucky–no grades in PreK. I have to assume you’ve come across this, but in case not…

    Hang in there, babe, and hooray for the kids.

    Liked by 1 person

  15. margaretsmn says:

    I wish that we could do away with grades entirely. What does a number mean? I love how much you love your kid-heroes.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s