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Published:December 10th, 2008 18:45 EST

Teachers Shouldn't Use A Red Pen To Grade Papers

By Robert Paul Reyes

"Teachers using red pen to mark students` work could be harming their psyche as the color is too aggressive, according to education strategies drafted by an Australian state government.

The `Good Mental Health Rocks` kit, which was distributed this month to about 30 schools in Queensland state, offers strategies such as `don`t mark in red pen (which can be seen as aggressive) - use a different color.`"

Reuters/Pauline Askine

When I was a small child my mother didn`t hesitate to spank me when I did poorly on a test. That was hurtful to my rear end and harmful to my psyche, but I graduated from high school with honors and I attended college.

If a student flunks a test, the big fat "F" is going to be harmful to his psyche whether the teacher used a red, blue, or black pen. If a young scholar flunks an exam his psyche should be hurt, he will never improve if he`s not upset when he receives a poor mark.

Implementing The "Good Mental Health Rocks" kit will create little wimps who aren`t prepared for real life. In the real world everyone fails at one time or another, we just have to learn to pick ourselves up and try again or move on and do something else.

Teachers should compliment their young charges when they do well, but it`s also their duty to let them know when they fail to meet expectations.

My advice for teachers: If one of your pupils flunks a test, use a big fat red marker to grade