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Monday, March 19, 2012

No stray marks

When I was grading my kids "Ready to STAAR" test over Spring Break (and yes, I hate that name as much as you do), I noticed that one of my little angels had not shown a single lick of work on her test. She had answer choices circled, and that was it. No pictures labeled. No addition, subtraction, multiplication, or division shown. Nothing circled or underlined. Nada. Zip. Zilch.

Needless to say, I was not particularly pleased with this child.

Today, I asked her why on God's green earth she would choose to show absolutely no work whatsoever. She started with, "You said..." as I thought, "Oh, this should be good. Exactly what did I say that gave you the idea this would be ok?"

"You said that we couldn't make any marks on the test, or the machine would count it wrong."

GROAN. I had told the kids not to make any stray marks on their BUBBLE SHEET - the answer document, completely separate from the test booklet.

This is why this girl did NOT get high marks from me on the TELPAS listening ratings!!!


Martha said...

I have the opposite problem! I create and scan all of our in-house bubble sheets at least 4 time a year for all HS subjects. You wouldn't believe the marks I don't WANT to see on bubble sheets! They are aways doing stuff like connecting those dots that allow them to be scanned! I catch up to them and tell them if they do it again, they'll have to take another test twice as long as punishment. That threat is usually enough to get them to stop. =)

Mister Teacher said...

Yeah, that was what I was trying to get them NOT to do... I NEVER said don't mark in the test BOOKLET!!

Mizz C said...

Uh, oh. I was just about to submit my final manuscript for my revision of my A+ Guide to Great Test Taking, which includes a chapter on standardized tests. I will go back and talk about THE BUBBLE SHEET!!!! in more detail. I do suggest that kids use their test booklet to take notes, do mini-outlines, etc. I'd better call more attention to the important difference between the bubble sheet and test booklet.

May I link to your posting in my blog, Mizz C's Study Skills: You can e-mail me at to let me know if you'd welcome a link or not. Thanks.

Mizz C. aka Louise Colligan

Mister Teacher said...

Hey Mizz C,

Certainly, you're welcome to link to Learn Me Good any time you like!