Home > Education, Homeschool > Standardized Tests Can Be A Good Thing

Standardized Tests Can Be A Good Thing

The Educator and I have been patiently waiting for the results of Youth 2’s standardized test. I want the test to confirm a statement made by Youth 2. It would put Youth 2 in the 99th percentile. I seriously doubt it.

Standardized tests are mandatory. They really offer no real data other than where your child should be at a point in the educational time. The downside is order of education being done. If my child hasn’t covered the tested topic at this time, he/she will in the near future. My real reason for a standardized test is for evaluating my child.

These tests show me where my child is with the national average. If Youth 2 were to score below the 50th percentile, I then know homeschooling is a failure. I want to know the effectiveness of our teaching.

Another reason for this test is to see where we need work. If Youth 2 were to score low in say math, this would mean we evaluate the curriculum we are using and how we are instructing. Do we need to focus more on math?

I have an expectation of my children needing to score higher than the 80th percentile for me to believe my children are succeeding. That is just me. I worry in the 70’s.

There are downsides to standardized testing. Youth 2 took the test for 8th grade, but my child is studying Algebra II. I am not going to get an accurate assessment unless my child scores low. Even with tests that are on par with the grade of my child do not tell me enough detail.

Standardized tests provide me general information about how well my child is doing. It lacks the detail I would love to have. Is my child struggling with geometry but is excelling is algebra? I don’t know. You can only take this information so far. What you can get is whether or not your homeschooling is working, but WAIT there is a catch.

Some tests are easier than others. We learned this the first time Youth 1 took a standardized test. Taking the easier test does not provide accurate or informative information. You don’t know how your child is doing. We selected and have always selected the harder version which coincides with public and private school testing.

Take the time to use these tests as a way to independently evaluate your child. These tests can provide you a general idea of where your child is. You will be able to focus on the educational weaknesses of you child.

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  1. November 18, 2013 at 3:49 am

    Oh; I agree. I like the testing, personally. We do ours at the end of the year though, but it helps me plan for the next year. I don’t doubt your son is in the 99th percentile. I know our daughter surpassed even my own expectations and they were pretty high.
    Great post!

    • November 18, 2013 at 5:10 pm

      It helps us prepare for the next year, too. We had to complete this before the end of the yard.
      The 99th percentile is great except for one issue. My child isn’t taking 8th grade math but a higher level. I should have known when he stated he correctly answered every math problem.
      Good for your daughter! I am happy for her and you as well.

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