I’m Spreadsheeting My Heart Out, Part 2

Yesterday I wrote about using a spreadsheet to help me track student progress and identify reasonable goals over the course of monthly cycles. Today I’m going to write about how I am delivering feedback to third grade students.

First, I used Alice Keeler’s Epic Rubric. I tested it out a few times with my own email address instead of using student addresses. I’m glad I did; my first few tries would send the wrong rubric to a student. Chris would be opening his email and clicking on Trisha’s rubric. I couldn’t let that happen! It turns out, the spreadsheet could not handle as many students as I was entering. When I chunked them into smaller groups, it worked way better.

I also adapted the rubric itself. I didn’t particularly need the percentages or to display weights. Plus, if I wanted to easily copy and paste details from my central spreadsheet into the rubrics, I needed them to be horizontal and not vertical. I also tweaked some other things.


I color-coded the pants off it. If spreadsheets wore pants.

So I color-coded the criteria into three groups; yellow is for organization criteria, blue is for using evidence from the passage, and pink is for conventions such as grammar and spelling. To show whether or not they had met a criteria, I did the same thing as I had on my central spreadsheet: if I entered any text at all, the cell turned green, and empty cells turned red. And I actually just copied and pasted the “invisible ones” into it. In fact, once I had worked out how I wanted the rubric to look, I just had to copy and paste from my central spreadsheet.

The “comments” section is even a conditionally formatted custom IF formula. If the student got a score of five or less, the comment that appears is “Your goal is to get two more points next time.” If they got between six and twelve, the comment that appears is “Your goal is to get one more point next time.” If they got a perfect score, then the comment that appears is, “Your goal is to keep up the good work!” Those comments are all actually written in there, it’s just the text turns black when the conditions of the IF formula are met. The text is orange otherwise, and therefore blends into the color of the cell.

Then I used the awesome function of Alice Keeler’s spreadsheet to email the rubric out to all my students. And since we use Gmail and Google Classroom on a regular basis, it’s a cinch to get kids to dig these up and take a peek.

I think this will help my big student-feedback challenge. I’m weirdly excited for the next time we do a prompt!

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