beejaxxxosaur asked: How does the standardized testing work? We haven't implemented it in our school yet but I think it's coming soon.
Hmmm. Well…I’m not exactly sure of your question.
If you are asking how standardized testing for Art works. . Well, I have no idea. I am still in the -blessedly safe- realm of no-standardized-testing-in-Art.
If you are asking how standardized testing works in a school. LAWD. Basically, from the moment the kids’ feet touch the doorframe in August, we are constantly telling them about what type of score they need to meet/exceed on each portion of the state standardized test (Reading, ELA, Math, Science, Social Studies). In the Fall, students takes the ITBS (Iowa Test of Basic Skills) which helps with placing the students into Gifted/Advanced classrooms and/or sometimes identifying areas of need. Throughout the year, we give quarterly -at least- benchmarks to determine how the students are progressing. At least once a month we meet in Data Teams (no really, that is capitalized) to review the progression of students and examine the data and use it to inform our goal-making and in-classroom teaching. After the holiday break, we really hunker down and reiterate the skills needed to meet/exceed on the standardized test. Then, a few days before the standardized test, we have a Pep Rally to get the kids “pumped” to take the test. It sounds a bit strange, but this is becoming standard practice in my neck of the woods. During the Pep Rally, students sing, rap, dance, perform original songs, perform spoken-word pieces, perform dramatic short plays, and perform as a step team to remind students to “do their best,” “get good rest,” “eat well the morning of,” ” bubble in darkly,” “take your time,” and to achieve the desired score.
Next, comes testing week. It is usually five days of testing wherein the students test for at least half the day. Sitting still for nearly four hours when you are 11-15 years old is so, so, so, hard. Much less, sitting still in the stressful environment of a standardized test. So, during this time, I try to make Art class a place of relaxed escape wherein the kids can catch their breath, have the optimal conditions for success, and just sort of “be.”
Because, you see, if students don’t meet/exceed on at least a specific number of the content tests and/or they don’t pass their classes…I’m not able to give you specifics, because this ratio often changes and it is sometimes situational…Well, then, the kid is retained and has to repeat the grade. To you and me, reading the above statement makes it seem pretty obvious that it is hard to “get held back,” but remember, the kids have been reminded constantly all year of the importance of this test. They are very stressed out by the time the testing day arrives.
Hence, we went outside to make Art, we are drawing skulls, and we are making Art in the style of Peter Max.
I hope this answers your question!