This article I found on feedly.com talks all about how WRONG the testing process is and how it goes against almost everything that studies have proven to help students achieve higher scores. First of all, testing in a similar setting to where learning takes place allows students to recall information more easily- even with this knowledge most testing is done in computer labs or gyms where many students can take exams at once. Another point that came up was that distractions may be a good thing. In everyday learning experiences students face distractions. Although typically being distracted is not a good thing, if students learn in a distractive environment, chances are they will score high in a similar environment. A third thing mentioned was that chewing gum stimulates the brain and also has proven to been helpful to student test scores.
I don’t know about all of you, but in my school we were tested in gyms, we had to be silent and couldn’t move from our seats, and we were not allowed to chew gum. Hmm.. Interesting considering all of those things have been proven to help students.
Differentiation is a huge part of classroom instruction and teachers emphasis this in their classrooms everyday. Is testing differentiated in any way? NO. Again.. very interesting.
All in all, todays educational system is too focused on ‘test scores’. Schools are being rated on how highly their students perform on tests, schools receive more funding if their students perform better, and so on. With this system in place what makes educators want to teach students anything not on the test? This issue is something that needs to be discussed and worked through in the educational system and rather than having so many tests, educators should begin to think more about “how they can improve students lives now and in the future”, and “how they can empower them and their strengths”.