Assessments, Self-Worth and Extra Credit


Cassie:  Holy Smokes!  This is an excellent assessment in math!  You got everything correct.

Charlie:  Yep.

Cassie: You must feel good about this!

Charlie:  Whatever.

Cassie:  What do you mean, “Whatever?”

Charlie: (in a snippy way)  I don’t base my self-worth on grades.

Cassie: Your self-worth?  Why all the attitude when I complement you on a perfect score?  This is fantastic, Char Bar!

Charlie:  (again with the snippy air) Your excitement and giddy voice is tiresome, Mom.  I don’t care what grades I get…on anything.  I never have.

Cassie:  Yea…well…I think you should care.

Charlie: Well I don’t.

Cassie:  It seems like maybe you cared.  Why else would you have bothered with these extra credit problems here?

Charlie: I was bored….and since there was no good reading material in the class room where we were having the test, I thought I might as well do the problems so, ya know, I wouldn’t be bored.

Cassie:  Hmmm.  So if there had been a good book to read on a shelf in the classroom, you would have gone for the book instead of doing the extra credit?

Charlie:  Of course.  I already showed that I knew how to do all the math on the test.  I didn’t need to do the extra credit.  I was just bored.  That teacher never has good books to read when you’re done with your work. I guess since she’s a math teacher, she wouldn’t.

Cassie:  I think all teachers, no matter their subject, should have good books around.

Charlie: (excitedly, snippy voice gone)  I know! Me too.  (Pause) You were the kind of kid who was always over-the-top about extra credit, weren’t you?

Cassie:  Maybe.

Charlie:  Just like Chloe.

Cassie:  What are YOU over-the-top about in school, Charlie? (Pause)  Besides computers?

Charlie:  Science experiments.  Learning NEW stuff. Talking to my friends.  I’m NEVER over the top about assessments or extra credit.  Pffft.

Cassie: (sighing)

Charlie:  That makes you mad?

Cassie:  No.  Not at all.  You teach me a lot of things all the time Charlie Bollinger.  You really do.

Charlie:  I’m an excellent teacher.

(No kidding.)


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