Monday, November 26, 2007

Day 26 Tomorrow's Forcast --- Boring

Tomorrow at school we being three days of giving a pre-TAKS benchmark test in math, reading and writing for fourth grade/science for fifth grade. This should tell us where are kids are and what we need to do to get some of them over the hump for the real TAKS in March and April.. Next to the actual TAKS test it is the most boring three days in existence. I will have a group of 4 or 5 students and all I am allowed to do is walk around -- supervise breaks, to keep them from discussing the test (like these kids are going to discuss the test -- get real -- I have the lower students, the ones who don't discuss test and since they are with other students they know are low too, they don't even try to cheat) and in general be bored.
I have been giving the Texas Assessment of Knowledge and Skills since its conception back in the 1980s. I have seen its name change from TABS to TEAMS to TAAS to TAKS. Each name change brought minor changes in the test.
I used to fuss about giving the test and hated to feeling like I had to teach to a test. I didn't really teach to a test. I felt that if I just did good teaching then prepared the students for taking a standardized test they would do well and for the most part that was true. I was luck enough to teach in school that didn't put extra pressure on teacher to over prepare students. I know that it has changed --- it is that change that has a job for me now. I tutor at risk students.
I don't lobby (quietly in teacher lounge) anymore for the test to be dropped. It is because of that test that I get a pay check. :) So now when teachers are fussing and letting off steam, I just sit quietly and smile to myself glad that my name isn't on a bottom line anywhere.
Funny how circumstances change your perspective.

1 comment:

Carrie said...

It's amazing to me how much teaching has changed since I started 10 years ago due to NCLB.