10 Real Things I Wrote While Grading

Tuesday, October 28, 2014


I haven't posted in a while because I've been grading fictional short stories for the last twelve hundred years. Why? Because I told my students there was no page limit for the assignment. I'll pause while you laugh at me and point and shout, "ROOKIE MISTAKE!" jeeringly.


Thank you. I needed that.

Now that that's done, I actually did enjoy grading them. Their stories were awesome and they actually read their rubrics, which figuratively speaking made my heart explode with never-ending confetti. I also enjoyed grading them because I began to realize that some of my feedback would sound very, very strange if taken out of context. 

So I decided to publish it on the Internet.  

Here are 10 real things I wrote while grading:

I mean, don't we all?

Super stinky scarf, or superhuman senses? This is important.

If you've had the popcorn in Chicago you will understand that this is a valid question.

Or a governor-appointed granny?

(Note: It was in the linen closet.)

Can't believe I fell for the old bait-and-switch!

When only the last paragraph of a paper is messy, you may as well make a note to your teacher that says, "Rushed to finish writing this on the bus, xoxo"

This would be a strange thing to shout in a movie theater.
Or anywhere.

This story was AWESOME and I am still thinking about it.

And finally, the comment that gave me the idea for this post:

I already can't wait to grade next year's short stories.





  1. Love them! Makes me want to read them all. Totally curious now especially about the wound licking?!

  2. Love this! Would you be willing to share this project with us?

  3. I.am.dying. It almost makes me want to teach middle school, but then I would miss second grade journal writing....which is only one page or three sentences!

  4. You must be a SpringBoard teacher, just like me. Those narratives were torture to grade. I made the same mistake you did. I had some kids turn in 30 page stories. I gave up after awhile and just skimmed. Thank goodness I had them highlight the parts of the hero's journey that they included or I would have never finished them.

  5. After reading a romance narrative that all of my class had to write, I wrote to a student.....I'm pretty sure that a well dressed young woman wouldn't say....'May I sit here? Some wanker is in my seat.'

  6. Love!!! Yes, I'm a H.S. English Teacher of 20+ years, and I still make the rookie mistake at times regarding length. But, hey, who are we to stunt a student's imagination and enthusiasm for writing? Thanks for sharing.

  7. Love these! I can so connect to the popcorn in Chicago statement- I was introduced to it this summer when I went to Chicago and a friend told me I had to stop by Garrett Popcorn. My mouth is watering just thinking about it! :)

  8. I am currently in my last semester of classes before student teaching next semester. I love the idea of writing down things students say, write, or do that is funny. I have never thought about writing down the comments that we, as teachers, may write back to them. I hope to write down information like this when I am a teacher, so that when I am not having my best day I can go back and look at these. I believe that this will help remind me why I wanted to become a teacher. Thanks for sharing!! :)

  9. Today, on a physics assignment I just wrote "but are you the REAL Slim Shady?"

  10. Teaching, learning. The circle of life.

  11. These are even giving more understanding with respect to grading quotes and students would almost be showing their most of the interest towards.

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