There’s a strange phenomenon that occurs when I mark books: there is always one that goes unmarked. I’ve been teaching for 9 years, and each year I have at least half a dozen different sets of workbooks that I mark regularly throughout the year. Every single time, without fail, I hand the books out and one student raises there hand:
“Err, sir? You’ve not marked mine.”
Sometimes, I know the reason: that student has taken their book away to slyly add to an assessment, or they’ve put the book in their bag without thinking. Most of the time, I have no idea how they were missed. I go through, book by book, until they are all done. This has been so common place that I go through the books again to check for that one workbook. Yet when it comes time to feedback, one solitary assessment has gone without comment.
It’s like the sock that goes missing in the wash. There’s no rhyme or reason for it, and it’s never the same student twice. Maybe it’s the students’ long term goal to send me loopy. Or maybe I’m doing it subconsciously, trying to make marking more entertaining?