Thursday, July 25, 2013

"IDK" is not an option this year!

The most infuriating thing to me is when a student doesn't know an answer on a test and writes "IDK??" in the sloppiest of handwriting. Those of you who teach elementary may not know what I am talking about , but I know my secondary friends can for sure relate! Even if you teach completely angelic students who always know the answers, please just nod your head and smile so I don't feel alone...okay, thanks.

I never allow that as an answer in class, but up until this summer, I never felt like a had a good response when a student says "IDK" because I can't help but think they really mean "I don't care." My friend Melanie and I went to a session when we were at CAMT and the presenter talked about other sentence starters for students who need more help to answer questions. In essence, they are 5 alternatives to using "IDK" in the classroom. Of course, we both had to make posters to put in our classroom! Here's mine:

Don't worry, I wouldn't share anything if I wasn't going to make it available to click here to download it for FREE from my Teachers pay Teachers store!

This is formatted to print out on 11x17 paper. You can send it to any office supply/printing center and have printed. Office Max is printing mine for less than $2! 

Let me know what you think! Do you have any ways to get kids past the "IDK" statements?


  1. OMG Danielle (LOL) I know exactly what you mean! One thing I always tell parents is that I am happy to help students when they are having trouble. However, I do have one rule about it...they can't come in for extra help and say I don't get it...they have to have specific questions. Kind of like what you wrote on your poster...I got to here and I don't know what to do next, etc. I feel like it is extremely insulting to me when I have spent 45 minutes working with a class on something and the best "question" I get is I don't get it!

    1. Haha! Jennifer, you must be my long lost twin. I say the exact same thing daily! You crack me up.

  2. I teach middle school and have the same problem! It drives me crazy, thanks for sharing the poster!