Thursday, January 26, 2012

I don't like Stands tests.

A standardized test is a test that is administered and scored in a consistent, or "standard", manner. Standardized tests are designed in such a way that the questions, conditions for administering, scoring procedures, and interpretations are consistent and are administered and scored in a predetermined, standard manner - Wikki

I do not like standardized test! I think they measure absolutely nothing!  I had to write a short argumentative paper on the issue in one of my Graduate classes a couple of semesters ago. It was one of those papers were everyone in class was able to read and required to write at least 3 argumentative comments on it! So, it was very hard!  I had to research the test’s limitations, discrepancies, and the lower academic standard since they were re-organized in the 70s.   I also had to debate why they are good to use – which for me was hard to find a reason to like them but I dug deep and found 2. ;) 

As a home school Parent, I just regarded the stands test issue as one in which I wouldn’t voluntarily make my children do.  So, when I discovered that the state, in which we will be moving to, requires all home schoolers to be tested every  year, the issue was taken out of my hands. 

So, let me fast forward! Since, we are going to be in our new state a few months before the school term ends, I decided it would be best just to have scores on file for when we get there.  So, although it is several months before the other children take their exams, and the Little Lady hasn’t finished this year’s curriculum, I had her take the CAT today anyway. (California Achievement Test).

I chose the CAT test to give her. Why? Out of the entire standardized tests (and there are many) in which children can take, you can purchase the 1970 version of the CAT.  This was important to me because the test was not one of the new editions which reflect a lower academic standard. There were other reasons as well. The test could also be done as a paper test or as a computer test. If you took the computer test than the scores were sent to you by email after the test is totally completed. If you took the paper test you only had to wait about a week.  Either way, the wait time for the test results would be fast!

The Little Lady scored mostly in the 98 and 99 percentile. Except for one test which she ranged in the middle of 3rd grade level, the rest of the test results ranged was between 4th and 6th grade level.

This was what I needed to hear! Praise the Lord for the confirmation to keep our little 2nd grader plugging away on the curriculum that we have selected! (It is a hard work load.) And as you all know, as a home school Parent, who chooses their homeschooling curriculum in light of what we feel the Lord would want us to do, it is still easy to second guess if we are doing enough, doing it right, etc., particularly with the amount of curriculum choices there are out there!
Anyway, I am glad that this year’s test is all over! I was so anxious. Here she was taking the test and I felt like I was being graded as her teacher. I was more nervous for her than I was when I took my own Graduate standardized test!  It sounds silly! Doesn't it? When I told Beloved all that I felt he laughed at me and gave me a hug.  I couldn’t help but laugh back but there were tears in my eyes! I was so relieved it was all over -- at least for this year.
* The Little Man just turned 6. So, I chose not to test him since in the new state that we will move to you don't have to start school until you are 7.  He will take the test next year. 


  1. I'm with you on this one! Our new state tests every year too, so I've decided to look at it just as a "fun" way to gauge what "people" think my kids should know...and lo and behold, my kids do just fine!

    This summer, my two oldest complained after taking the tests that there were "hardly any questions about the really fun stuff we learn". :)

    It is interesting to me too to see how my kids do "taking" the tests, and I have discovered a few areas to work on that I may not have thought to work on otherwise. That's a plus, right? :)

  2. Washington state has the same yearly test requirement. We've done them at home, but now go to a church where someone is doing the testing (helped me a LOT when I had other babies that weren't being tested!) My kiddos think it's a field trip day! They love testing! and the picnic/visit time that is included! Our state does not require that we report the test results, only that we can supply proof of administration if, we jump through that hoop...but I agree, I'd rather not.

  3. You and your children are simply amazing!! Love you!!

  4. I feel like tests are a measure of how effective I'm teaching more than anything else. I definitely take them personally! I'm thankful that in my state, we aren't required to test our children. Our curriculum has some pretty rigorous testing, but the kids haven't taken any standardized tests.

    Perhaps I would consider having the kids take them to silence those who question our choice, but I'm confident that my kids are doing well.

    I'm so glad you got through them and that they went so well! Good job, teacher!

  5. Where did you get your test at? Is there an online link you would be able to send me?

    Our state does not require the testing, but I would like to know where my daughter is at and to see if we are on the right track. I like the idea of not having to wait long to get the results.

  6. Yes, Mrs. Lisa! Deo gratias! She hits the latin books hard this year. I have been letting her just dip her toes in lately.

    Jamie, I have an email coming. We were on a simulator field trip today!

    Good to know, Keri! I think after this coming up move, we might head to Washington. But, who really knows?!

    Thanks, Aunt Sidney.

    Same with my curriculum, Nell. They are tested all the time but not with standardized testing. I was amazed how much it helped for others (who do not homeschool - I don't have a lot of support in this area- many do not agree with it or understand it) to hear how well she did on the test. It was obvious that they considered it more of a gage to show how well I teach the children than I do.

    Melissa, Yes. There is an online link. I will slip in and give you the info. The test is not expencive ($25) so it is easy to justify it if your state doesn't require it.

  7. Just catching up on some stuff I missed! Wow, that's great about your dd! Congratulations to both her and you !
    Btw, love your fave scripture from Is 61, it's been on my heart for quite a few months now and I've even reading meditating and confessing ! Great confirmation for me. Did you put that up there recently or have I just not noticed before lol ?

  8. The scripture has been up there for at least two years. It is special to me. "The Double Portion" was placed in my heart about 9 years ago.

  9. oh really! ok, that makes it even more amazing to me as I'd not noticed it before and it caught my eye yesterday....thanks!

  10. That is funny! God does that a lot to me too! :)

  11. http://​​testing-service/


Your comments are a gift to me and they warm my heart. I read and treasure every one. If you leave a comment, I will visit you as well. ~ Carmen