Refine Your End of-Year-Grading with Shoelace

Written by Lauren Lutz-Coleman

I know, it probably feels as if summer vacation is still miles off course. Now that we’re entering the final marking period, though, we’re in the home stretch! That also means that it’s time for end-of-year responsibilities like grading, assessing, and reporting. As a former middle school teacher, I’ve been right there with you: conducting reading level assessments, recommending students’ course placements, and, of course, preparing final report cards.

If you’re feeling burdened or overwhelmed, now’s the perfect time to tap into the power of your Shoelace educator dashboard. In this blog post, I’ll guide you through how Shoelace assignments and educator dashboard data can help you synthesize platform insights for either traditional or summative report cards, get more grades for your gradebook, and communicate the takeaways clearly to students and their families.

Harness the Skills Report for Standards-Based Reporting and Comments

If you’re prepping for standards-based report cards, you might be thinking, “What I really need are ways to demonstrate student mastery of set performance indicators.” Shoelace has got you covered! You’ll find that the indicators shown on your standards-based report card match well to the skills that Shoelace academic content addresses.

Above: An example of a standard-based report card.

Teachers with Shoelace Premium membership receive individualized skill reports for each of their players. These reports contain significant insight into how each of your students have performed on the skills they’ve encountered. See which skills they’ve each mastered, they’ve each struggled to learn, and more with Shoelace’s tiered reporting system. 

These reports have value outside of standards-based report cards, too. They’re excellent sources of inspiration for drafting report card comments or parent/teacher conference talking points. With a quick glance at each player’s skills report, you can elevate the report card comments for that child by noting specific strengths and weaknesses. Prepare for parent/teacher appointments by pre-identifying their children’s strengths and weaknesses— or by printing out the skill report for them to receive alongside the report card!

Bolster Your Gradebook with Shoelace Assignments

Does your district use traditional report cards, where final grades are reported as percentages that correspond to letter grades? If you happen to know that say, a 97%-100% is the grade band for an A+, your district likely distributes traditional report cards.

Above: Examples of traditional report cards, with one reporting numerical percentages and the other reporting letter grades.

Determining final marks for traditional report cards requires calculating all of the individual grades in your gradebook. But wait— do you have enough graded work recorded in your gradebook? You’ll want to ensure you have enough marks recorded that the final averages are fair representations of students’ abilities. In my district, policy required teachers to surpass a minimum number of graded assignments each marking period. 

If you need to increase the number of graded assignments you’ve logged for this marking period, turn to the Shoelace assignment library. Premium Shoelace teachers have access to more than 700 pre-made and educator-vetted assignments in the Assignments Library. With assignments that address an array of reading levels, reading skills, and literary genres, there’s sure to be something that aligns to your curriculum. Once assigned, students receive the content in-game, while you can track their progress and find their auto-graded scores on your educator dashboard. Once everyone’s done, transfer those scores to your gradebook!


Getting through end-of-year grading and reporting can be stressful, especially while also hustling to finish curriculum, battle waning student motivation, and coordinate field days, field trips, class parties, and more. We feel for you. Yet, we know this work is significant with a lot often riding on these marks.

Lighten your workload this season with Shoelace. Let our auto-graded assignments and educator data dashboard streamline your grading process, so that you can instead spend your final weeks with the students acknowledging the pay-offs that come from their hard work. Let’s celebrate growth, progress, improvement, and effort!


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