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Lesson Plans


testing

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Nancy Sojka (turtles)
Sun, 9 Feb 1997 09:40:35 -0600

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I am the K-12 art teacher in a small rural school. Recently, our secondary
staff has been dicussing possible changes in our semester testing
procedures. Presently, our handbook says that all "academic" subjects must
provide a comprehensive semester test, project, or summation. The test must
be worth 20% of the semester grade.
Some on our staff believe that semester testing procedure--two days of 90
minute testing period for eight periods with comprehensive testing--helps
prepare our students for college testing. Of course, not all of our
students are college-bound. Many students who have good daily grades end up
with very poor semester test grades.
As the art teacher, I have modified the requirement by asking students to
do the last assignment of the semester as their "Final project" in which
they will show that they can apply all of the technical and intellectual
content they have learned during the semester. I don't do paper and pencil
testing, since I don't teach paper and pencil material.
One problem I have is that if students are required to be present for the
unusually long 90 minute period, there are always students with "extra
time." You and I know that WE would try to use all of the available time to
refine that important project. Most teens would rather say,"I'm done!" and
play. I have motivated students to finish the final project by the last
regular class period by telling them that if the project is finished they
don't have to come for the final period. Only the few dedicated workers
come to use that 90 minutes.
The debate is: should we eliminate the 90 minute period and ask teachers to
do whatever evaluation they want to do in the normal 42-minute period? (Of
course, we are working on a block-schedule, so this may be a useless
debate.)Should teachers be required to weight a final exam or project at
20% of the semester grade?
Nancy Sojka

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  • Reply: Christine Merriam: "Re: testing"
  • Reply: Mysticsue: "Re: testing"