A kid hands in his state test (multiple choice) with two answers circled for one question.
Me: “You can only choose one answer for each question.”
Kid: “Well, I know but I couldn’t decide between B and C. So I’m just going to do both.”
Me: “You can’t do both. If you choose both, it’s automatically wrong.”
Me: “Please choose one answer.”
Kid: “No thank you. I’ll take my chances.”
I’m not sure you understand how chances work.
Kid (in reference to the state tests): “Is the rest of life going to be this boring?”
Me: “What?! No! Promise.”
Us: “There is NO talking during this test. Starting right now– absolutely NO TALKING.”
Kid: “Ok! Got it!”
Answering multiple choice questions about a text.
Kid: “The answer is ‘A’!”
Kid: “Because the answer is always ‘A!'”
Jesus Christ, kid. Have we taught you nothing?
The answer is always ‘C.’
Technically the kid had too many errors to qualify for this reading level, but then he pronounced “damp rag” as “damn rag,” and since he’s 9 years old and very otherwise well-mannered, it was pretty fucking hilarious.
So I passed him.
I think that’s fair.
Teachers, people with children, or anyone who knows or cares about teachers or children, this John Oliver rant on standardized testing is a MUST WATCH.
Every bit of it is hilarious because it’s so painfully and pathetically true.
Two of my personal fave highlights:
1. “Pearson are the educational equivalent to Time Warner Cable– either you’ve never had an interaction with them and don’t care, or….they HAVE RUINED YOUR FUCKING LIFE.”
2. Did anyone else know that Pearson uses Craigslist to recruit test-graders? Yes, that’s right– “Pearson chooses test graders the same way that you’d look for a mattress full of bedbugs or a no-strings-attached hand job.” This is like when I found out that Sing at Camp Robindel was judged by the local balloon lady. (sorry to the 99% of readers who have NO idea what I’m referring to, but to the 1% who do, you know the EXACT disappointed feeling I’m talking about).
Student: “Miss Emily, look! When I add 214 and 90, I get that the answer is still 214. But that’s not possible!”
Me: “You’re right. Not possible. So what do you think that means?”
Student (with a knowing smile): “There’s a typo on the test!”
And then I quit my job and never came back.
“It’s halfway out.” — Kid, when he requested to use the bathroom mid test and I asked if it’s an emergency.
I kind of want to give him full credit, though.
It’s only “teaching to the test” if you call it “teaching to the test.” If you call it “Test Prep Academy,” it’s best practice.
I’m glad my superiors explained this to me slowly and carefully while swinging a pocket watch and chanting the mantra “we do not teach to the test,” because when I first saw the schedule for the next two months I was starting to wonder why I became a teacher.
But “Test Prep Academy” sounds super fun, guys!!! Can we all wear fatigues?!