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Communicate Clear Expectations on Assignments

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Study Skills & Tools ^Music, Art and Makerspaces All Ages Strategy

Communicate Clear Expectations on Assignments

If your student does not live up to potential on assignments

Teach It!

  1. Objective: Students will have a clear picture of what is expected of them on a given project, assignment or activity.
  2. Background: Adults might assume that students have a clear understanding of what a successful outcome looks like, but oftentimes they don't. Perfectionist students might assume they need to do more than is appropriate, while other students might think a minimal amount is fine. As a teacher, you might care as much about process, growth and mindset as you do about the final outcome. Be sure that students fully understand your goals for them.
  3. Teacher Takeaways: a) Provide specific, concrete examples of what you view as a successful outcome. If you have varying expectations from students, be sure to meet with them individually. Make certain they know that your expectations are unique to them and not to focus on others. b) If appropriate, provide a written rubric students can refer to. Some students might have a clear understanding at first, but forget over time. c) Consider creating the rubric as a class. When students take part in creating the objectives and clarifying successful outcomes, they are likely to be more motivated and fully understand expectations.

Why It Works (the Science Of Learning)!

When students don't begin an assignment with clear direction, they might produce work that lacks focus or doesn't meet expectations. Some students might create unreasonable expectations for themselves, creating unnecessary stress. Providing clear direction and specific expectations is likely to keep students engaged and confident.