Are you, as a parent, more anxious to check the results than your children? Of course you are, and why shouldn’t you be? The CBSE ICSE mark sheet is an encapsulation of the entire year’s work, which makes it a very important document.
Do you know how to read the mark sheet? Viewing a mark sheet can be overwhelming and confusing. You may not know what is important and which factors you can ignore. Let’s understand what certain phrases mean and what to watch out for.
Here are five aspects you should look for while evaluating your child’s mark sheet:
The Grade Point System
Mark sheets have a point system for the child’s marks. Alongside a number for the exact marks, there is also a letter for the range of marks. Sometimes, there will only be a letter and not the exact score. Here is an explanation of the grade point system and what it means.
Below is the current CBSE grading scale for classes 6 – 8:
It is important to note that these are the general letter grades on a mark sheet but may vary depending on school and board of education. The scale differs for class 9 and 10. Check the mark sheet for a key with the exact values.
Marks are important but be sure to look at the attendance section as well. It will tell you if your child has been cutting classes. If there is less attendance than you expected, look in the teacher’s notes. Poor attendance may indicate low interest in school or in a particular subject.
Often in the case of younger students, teachers will leave personalized remarks in the mark sheet. Does he pay attention in class? Is your child following instructions? Is he getting along with others?
The answers to these questions can be critical to identify your child’s behaviour in class. As a parent, you should not neglect this behavioral aspect. It shows their attitude towards other students, teachers, and learning in general. Marks are not the only important factor as the child can learn life lessons and get practical experience for the future.
If your child has not performed well, these remarks can also point out the reasons. You will get notes on their personal attributes, communication, behavior, work habits and social skills. If they talk a lot in class or be very silent, do not dismiss it as something that young kids do. The problems may continue unless you remedy them now.
Percentage vs. Percentile
These are two terms which you will probably encounter on your child’s mark sheet. They are often used interchangeably, which is wrong. Both of these have different meanings.
Percentage is more common, and it means, in the simplest terms, ‘a representation out of 100’. The word ‘percent’ can be divided into ‘per’ and ‘cent’, which literally means ‘a part of 100’. The values are being converted to a total of 100.
You should note that percent is indicated by ‘%’ but percentile is not. If your child has scored 20 marks out of 40, they have scored 50%.
Percentage is usually used in general terms whereas percent is for more specific purposes. One might say ‘A large percentage of the children aced their exams’.
Percentile is a bit more complicated. It denotes a measure of distribution through statistical means. If your child is in the 60th percentile, this means they scored higher than 60 percent of the kids who took the exam. You can use percentiles to compare your child to their peers. Was the exam for everyone or just your child?
Percentage – Representation of data out of 100
Percentile – Representation of data in comparison to the rest out of 100.
For example, a child scoring 95% on the exam means they got 95 marks out of 100. However, the exam could have been easy and many others could have scored 100 marks. Percentage doesn’t tell you anything about the others.
If the child was in the 95th percentile, you know for sure that they did better than 95 percent of the class. Therefore, a high percentage is good, but a high percentile is better.
In the end, percentile seems to be the fairer way to judge your child’s performance and know where they stand in class.
There are periods apart from the main subjects that are on your child’s schedule. Karate, music, swimming, art, singing, and dance are just some of the other activities that your child may excel in. It is important to test the waters and ask your child what they like to do. Look at their performance in areas such as PT, writing, and public speaking.
Schools also conduct programs and tournaments for sports, drawing, chess, etc. See if your child is interested in any of these. You may have uncovered a hidden talent and found an athlete or singer.
Try not to compare your child’s marks in front of them as this is off-putting. Not all children learn the same way and someone who excels in one subject may struggle with another.
Do not scold or verbally abuse your child for missing out on marks. Try encouraging them and asking them a genuine reason for failure rather than berating them. This will only make them dislike studying even more.
Knowledge is the top priority but marks are a way of measuring that knowledge. The system is not perfect, but as of now it is the only one that exists. Apart from this, meet the teachers so you can know more about what your child does in class.
Focus more on whether they are learning rather than memorizing and regurgitating information. If they only study so they can do well in exams, the knowledge will get stored in short term memory and be forgotten after the exam.
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Never forget that these are the formative years for your child and will shape the rest of their life. Keep this in mind and your child is sure to go places. Happy parenting!