Sorry to say it but the cartoon reflects an opinion I have offered many times, that a lock-step curriculum bores the bright pupils and discourages the slower ones. This is not the fault of educators, but of natural human culture. People like to think all children are equal and they aren’t of course, but parents demand that we pretend so.
I would also add that not all children test the same way. Everyone has different strengths and we should not judge them all the same way. One of the reasons I vary my approaches in class is to give different children the opportunity to play to their strengths.
Good for you, Jennifer. I wish every school would give its teachers that latitude.
Testing is a good place to start but should never be the end. I was saved by a test in 3rd grade, I came from a poor background and was a poor reader but I understood what I read. They had me in the slow group when I took the annual Weekly Reader Comprehension Test and scored the highest score in my grade-I was put in the 1st group from that result and enjoyed the advantage of strong competition from that point on. Testing saved me.I do like your cartoon-it is very indicative of how non-educators see testing.
I agree Norm. Testing has a benefit – looking at student’s strengths and weaknesses. However, it should not be the end all be all of achievement. A brilliant friend of mine didn’t get into her college of choice because she suffered from severe test anxiety. She had a +4.0, tons of extra curriculars, and if you spoke to her, you could see her intelligence. However, her SAT scores were just average at best. Therefore, she lost funding and opportunity. Ridiculous.
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