Quick and Easy Report Card Comment Help For You!

Fern Smith's Classroom Ideas - a quick and easy way to knock out report card comments!
A quick and easy way to knock out report card comments
My parents moved to the United States from the United Kingdom for a better life. They wanted to see their new "country" and they didn't mind dragging around their only child, me. I went to more elementary school than you can count on both hands, it was probably one of the reasons I wanted to become a teacher. I remember having so many great ones that were kind and loving to the New Kid.
But there was also one other thing I remembered, almost every report card use to say something like, "Fernley is a smart young lady who finishes her work quickly and goes on to bother others." Boy, oh, boy did I love to bother others....nothing mean, just Chatty Cathy talk, talk, talk, talk, talk! I will never forget one year, my mom setting the report card down and saying something like, "Do you think they have a book of comments? This is the fifth CITY but the same comment!"
Turns out they did have a book, actually a few books. There were books of teacher comments in the early 1970s and there are books of teacher comments available now! But now, we also have the beauty of the Internet. 
Many of us have online report cards that are filled out online and then available for the parents to print at home. That's what our district does, I am able to print my son's report card when I want to, or NOT print it and just view it online. Everything is automated, a #2 for needs improvement or an E for Excellent behavior, but as a mother, it is still nice to see a comment from the teacher, even a typed one. That shows me, that out of a classroom full of "little people" {or 150 high school "big people"} that teacher has taken the time to get to know my son.
But filling out report cards can be a stressful time of year, you are still planning and teaching the students, you have a report card deadline, usually even before the nine weeks is over and sometimes, administrator approval of your cards....lets face it, you don't get time during the school day to do this, you are more than likely doing all this work on a weekend, on your own time. :( But this is the one thing we shouldn't skimp on, taking the time to write nice comments will help develop your student - teacher relationship as well as gaining parental support.

Always start and end with a positive comment, squeezing the bad news in the middle.  
EXAMPLE: Michelle is a sweet, young lady who is kind to everyone. If she reads nightly for 20 minutes, her fluency and comprehension will improve. I love having her in my class!
I have found a few FREE sites where you can copy and  paste a terrific comment into your students' report cards. It also helps you when you're stuck with something to say about a student.  
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