Sometimes when I golf I like to take a Mulligan.  Sometimes, I like to take many Mulligans. Most times, I just don’t bother to keep score.  Redoing something is a necessity in life.  I have had to repaint my basement six or seven times.  I can not remember all of the colors except for gray.  My wife had trouble living with the gray walls because it made her feel like she was in a cave.  Being a Neanderthal, I liked my man cave.  In the end the basement became the kid’s play room, so I had to redo my idea for a man cave.  (I now have a corner of the garage that I share with a spider I named Charlotte.)

Today in class I gave an in-class writing assignment inviting students to show their assessment of a dinner meeting between a Major in the U.S. Army and a Sheik in Iraq that takes place near the end of the novel Sunrise Over Fallujah by Walter Dean Myers.  I asked students if they agreed with the Iraqi that a different war was going on now.  After reading the paragraphs, I can see many students would like a redo.  Some did not fully understand the question.  Some did not fully support their opinion with examples from the novel.  Some, obviously, did not complete the reading assignment.

The problem I face is to whether or not to have a redo.   Did I not explain the assignment well enough?  Could I have modeled it differently?  Should people unprepared get a second chance?

I know in every work place leaders deal with similar problems.  A major difference, of course, is that at work results matter.  In school, learning is what really matters.  So, I will hold kids accountable for this assignment, to teach the assignment again, and have students redo with a different question.  I continue to learn that people comprehend tasks at different rates.


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Filed under Business, Education, Lesson Plans, Lessons from students

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