But what do you REALLY think?

Testing. All Month.  My students only had one day of their English high stakes test (55 multiple choice questions – about reading, are you kidding me?) but then we have all the other grades and all the other tests that determine we don’t have internet access, or library availability, or any work in the computer labs or laptop carts.  It’s all about the tests.  After our test was over, at least one student, in every single block asked me, “Why do we have to come to school?  The SOL test is over.”  (I think there are some teachers who feel the same way but that’s a whole other topic…)

In an effort to put this whole testing thing in perspective, I asked my kids to draw a picture of what they thought the test creators looked like, and then give them a backstory.  What was their home life like?  How did they come to be in this job?  Here are some of the results:

Z used to be a human but one day on his way to work he was bitten by a Zombie.  He then blamed his teaching job for the incident and became a Test Creator.  Now he creates hard questions to annoy students into becoming…ZOMBIES! – Bill 

Back in 1963, there was a chemical war with a distant planet.  NASA created a deep space radar satellite.  Instead of trying to communicate, they triggered a war.  Rodriquez McPittles was out with his family when a glowing boomerang glided through the air.  That was the last thing he saw before he lost consciousness.  He awoke in 1972 in a pile of rubble.  He realized that he and a group of mutants were the last thing on Earth.  He later realized that his beloved family was dead; his father, his mother, and his beautiful siblings.  He lost his sanity and ever since then he tortures little kids into doing mind-wrenching tests call the SOLS. – Logan

Janking 5000 was a very old computer and his ‘father’ built him.  He raised him with questions (and without Google) so he had to figure out everything himself.  He saw all the other computers getting updated while he stayed the same.  He chose to take his anger out by writing questions for children that they can’t use Google for either.  He never had a Mom and his ‘Dad’ abandoned him for an Apple computer.  He lives in a powerplant so he can have unlimited energy to do what he does.  He plans to go on until he dies (never) or until iPhone 10000000 comes out. -Calvin

Senor Ghost

This is Senor Ghost.  He died while taking a test.  Now he will get revenge by haunting tests and making everyone fail.  Even the easiest questions are hard when he haunts them.” Emily 

Mr. Paper is a former heavy metal star.  One day a scientist invited him to his lab and by accident, made him as thin as paper.  Nowadays he is a middle school teacher who hates students. ( This is because the scientist was a college student).  If a student makes one wrong move, he will whack them with his electric guitar.  He is also famous for his latest teaching endeavor, making a new testing category; UF for Utterly Failed.  – Jim

Mr. Washton-Haston was raised by female clowns.  They dyed his hair red and gave him a makeover.  In Mr. Washton-Haston’s free time he sends out questions about things he has overheard.  His Moms make him do acrobatics and he breaks at least a bone a day.  This makes him very grumpy.  Ladies and gentlemen,  Mr. Washton-Haston! – Genovi

Dr. Midget Catclone – As revenge for calling him ‘cute’ constantly, he plans to make SOL questions and hacks the mainframe that debates the questions and enters his own.  He intends to bore people to death. – Chase

Ms. Booty-Shahooty was literally raised by wolves.  Once, she was dropped on her head and all her hair was sucked up by a vacuum so now she grows it obsessively.  She trips on it around 6-8 times a day.  She lives in a cave and makes pesky tests for the SOLs.  She hates children. – Virginia

Mr. Gwenn Shoeford stands at a tiny 3 feet tall.  He is 50 years old but likes to think he is 20.  He is an orphan (his parents died when he was very little in a fire) and he had to raise himself as a kid because no one wanted him.  Not even the orphanage.  – Julianne

Some of the kids only did pictures:

I’m glad they have a sense of humor about it all (more than I do, at least) but think about the message we are sending with these high stakes tests at the end of the year.  The overall theme in all of their backstories was someone who DOES NOT LIKE KIDS! Yet these are the same people making decisions about their futures?

“A nation’s greatness is measured by how it treats its weakest members.” ~ Mahatma Ghandi

We must do better.
If you agree, sign the resolution:  http://timeoutfromtesting.org/nationalresolution/