ProTip Wednesday: 7 Easy Standards-Based Grading Hacks

standards based learning strategies

You’re taken the dive and are now swimming in the murky waters of standards-based grading. You might have seen this picture, which starkly illustrates how much more student transparency a teacher receives when using SBG:

(via “Seven Reasons for Standards-Based Grading” by Patricia L. Scriffiny)

You know that you want to do it, but the question is how? Here are 7 “hacks” to get started with SBG with help with experts from the community.

Translating SBG grades to the final grade

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Stuck with your school-mandated grade book? Maybe you’re not sure which assignments count towards the final grade or not—here’s how to use it all to your advantage. (via MeTA musings)

Grading science labs with SBG

Ms. Bethea standards based grading

Teaching science and not sure how to grade labs with SBG? Ms. Bethea developed a Google Spreadsheet for students to track their mastery. She also documents her journey from using Easy Grade Pro, to Google Docs, to finally Snap Grades for recording grades. (via Teaching|chemistry)

Steps to implementing a successful SBG

Mr. Buell Always Formative standards based grading

Mr. Buell over at Always Formative sets up many of the foundational steps to implementing successful SBG. From setting up your grade book, to tracking assessments, to translating final grades, this is a solid resource to start with. (via Always Formative)

Keeping the grading policy transparent

Ms. Shettsline grading policy

Ms. Shettsline offers a sample of her grading policy for her Algebra 3/ Trigonometry class to help explain an easy SBG transition. This is a very transparent strategy to show students how SBG works in your class, why you are using it, and even how a sample grade might look like in the grade book. (via Make Math Easy)

Increasing student intrinsic motivation

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How do you get students into the “I can” mentality and voluntarily buy into SBG? Superfluous Thoughts decides to re-frame a semester in mastery skills for her ELA class. All skills are framed with “I can…” thereby making it more tangible for students. (via Superfluous Thoughts)

Elementary level-friendly data tracking sheets


You may have seen her tracking tools floating around Pinterest already, so here Ms. Nannini created a 3 part series of what, why, and how to SBG. To make things even easier, she created a 3-5th grade SBG kit complete with data tracking tools and grade book pages for the elementary teacher. Her blog is full of resources that helps any beginner SBG-er get started. (via Young Teacher Love)

Keeping track of SBG

Mr. Noschese

Mr. Noschese, just featured as a teacher who SBG, shows how to keep track of your SBG from both the teacher end as well as the student end. He shows how to color code his Google Doc to a reflection sheet students fill at the interim periods for self-reflection—resourceful strategies to make sure both parties are accountable for learning. (via Action-Reaction)

How can pin-pointing learning gaps help your students? Find out how you can get started at

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