Monday, October 5, 2015

This will be on the test

My son is in real school now: He has defined classes, grades and real homework. So far, he has loved all of it.

As we continue on his academic journey, I am trying to keep a close eye on how he handles the structure and rules of school. Especially tests. He had a math test last week that he was excited to tell me all about - but that might be because he found it "easy" and got all the answers correct. I will be interested to hear what he thinks about the standardized testing when he gets his first exposure to that in a few years.

I remember standardized testing in my school - those odd days where we sat at our desks for hours filling in bubbles on a scantron sheet and then getting the results several months later. I am sure that it has changed since then - especially the frequency.

A recent Mother Jones article describes the increase in standardized testing and how some students are starting to retaliate: Mostly by opting out. Granted, students are not able to opt out of every test, but with a little research, they are able to determine which tests are required and which ones are measurements used to evaluate their teachers and schools, and are therefore optional.

The history of standardized testing and the need for data is complex, but I find it disturbing that U.S. schools dole out the highest number of tests per year - with some unfortunate students taking up to 20, depending on their school district.

I, for one, would rather my son focus on learning more in school than how to take a test.

How many standardized tests does your child have to take this year? Tell me in the comments.

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