The Nightmares of Kindergarten Testing!



I have spent the past two days assessing kindergarteners on the iPads.  We have to assess what they don’t know at the beginning of the year in reading and math to compare at the middle of the year and then again at the end of the year.  

This is NOT easy or fun for any of us.  I will probably have nightmares that involve these.

A server that drops the signal during testing! 

Using technology the kids don’t know how to use!

Germs!  They are nasty!  Picking noses and sneezing on the iPads is never fun to deal with.  This was my friend for the past two days!

The attention span of a flea.  Going through 35 reading questions and 40 math questions even in small groups will drive us all crazy.  I was constantly redirecting students who were hungry, thirsty, or just plain bored.

Shouting out the answers and cheating off of each other.  {Or randomly choosing answers}.  This gives us a false idea of what the students truly know.  Many of the students even called the test a game and said it was fun.  Glad they thought it was fun, but I don’t think they had the right idea or took it seriously.


And lastly, the pure knowledge that this is not the right way to assess kindergarteners.  We all know that many of them will come in with little knowledge, even with preschool experience.  They are sponges.  They will get it, regardless of if we assess them three times a year or not.  If we want to know what they really know, we can assess them in many different ways ~ not with a Student Growth Assessment created by a group of people who are not in the classroom.

To avoid these nightmares, we really need to use appropriate means to assess our kindergarteners to see what they really know.  Using technology only tells me if they know how to use it or not.  Though technology makes it easier for us to grade and keep data, sometimes we need to go back to a simpler way and use other methods to find out more about who our students really are. 


No more nightmares for me!

3 comments

  1. You bring up some great points! My daughter loves to get things wrong in games just to see what happens. Or if you ask her a question she will spout out gibberish just for fun. She starts school next week! Wish me and get teacher luck! :)

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  2. You bring up some great points! My daughter loves to get things wrong in games just to see what happens. Or if you ask her a question she will spout out gibberish just for fun. She starts school next week! Wish me and get teacher luck! :)

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  3. I agree. Try a paper and pencil test within the first 2 weeks. The first test of the school year does not give my any information. Some of the students were good guessers. They counted 17 correct but could not count to 5. I take the beginning of the year tests with a grain of salt.

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