By Melissa Priester, Illinois FACS Teacher and Realityworks guest blogger
My school was fortunate to replace our RealCare® Baby II models with the latest generation Baby, RealCare Baby 3, earlier this fall. Because we upgraded every single one of our Babies, I felt that my students needed to be assessed, as the latest generation Baby also monitors ambient temperature, time in a car seat and clothing changes. To assess my students on these new features – and help ensure that they were all being used – I created two separate grading rubrics: One details the possible ways students can get points deducted from their grade, and the other details all possible ways students can earn points towards their grade.
To assess the new information recorded by Baby, I deduct 1-5 percentage points on the rubric as follows.
Baby Temperature: -1% for every 10 minutes Baby is out of the safe range. I feel that this allows students to properly adapt to the temperatures they may encounter.
Clothing: Baby must be changed at least every 8-10 hours. This allows the student to not have to change the baby while in school.
Car Seat: Baby must be out of the car seat for a minimum of 5 hours. Again, I looked at making this possible for the students who choose to take the Baby over the school week. I choose to take 1-5% points off depending on the amount of time Baby is in the car seat. I have not seen any negative with this yet, but I could assume that if the car seat detectors are not installed correctly, that could alter your data.
Again, these deductions are in addition to points deducted due to missed care opportunities and mishandling events already recorded by baby.
Additionally, I included in my rubric points for student’s daily journal entries, taking a minimum of 2 photos of Baby and taking Baby out in public. These all allow students who have difficulty with Baby to make up some lost points.
Extra credit: I also offer extra credit for those that take brief videos of themselves daily, expressing their frustrations and excitements of the day on camera.
By using these rubrics, I feel that every student now has the chance to earn the best grade possible, while I ensure that all the great new features of RealCare Baby 3 are being used.
Melissa Priester is in her 13th year of teaching Family & Consumer Sciences at the high school level in Illinois. She has a master’s degree in Education Teaching Leadership and a bachelor’s degree in Family & Consumer Sciences.