Apr 15, 2009

The Old Schoolhouse® Magazine

To Test or Not to Test?
Apr. 15, 2009


When I first began homeschooling, I was surprised that in my state, homeschoolers aren't required to do any kind of testing.
I wondered how in the world parents would KNOW that their children were performing at grade level.Oh, how my opinion has changed over the years.
Although I have had my boys take some practice standardized tests just for the experience, I've never had them do any official testing.
Up to this point, it just hasn't seemed like a valuable use of our time.
As a public school teacher, I realized very quickly that standardized tests actually reflected more on the students' test-taking abilities (and how well the teacher had taught to the test) than how much the student had actually learned.
Little things like the tests using different terminology than the classroom curriculum, would cause students to miss questions on skills that I knew that they had mastered. It was very frustrating for both teacher and student.
And as a homeschool mom, I know it would be the same.
I'm thankful that in my state we don't HAVE to spend weeks preparing for and administering standardized tests.
I see my children's work and progress every day. I know how they are performing based on the things I'm teaching.
I don't need a standardized test to tell me that.
I know, however, that some of you live in states where standardized testing is required and that some homeschoolers opt to do standardized testing even if it isn't required.
If your child is going to be taking a standardized test, help to make it as non-threatening as possible.
Practice for the tests together.
Give him some special test-taking pencils to make it a special treat.
Make sure that your child is well-rested and ready for the big day.
Do your best to make it a positive experience.
Your child will appreciate the support, and it's another opportunity to make memories together. Enjoy every minute!
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Have a Blessed Day & Kiss your kids for me!

1 comment:

Livin' out loud said...

I AGREE!!! I view our children testing as a test for ME! I tell them, "This is for ME, so i know if I am doing my job!" Great post.