Well, ISATs are officially OVER!!! And not a moment too soon, either. My kids were positively awful today!! By the end of the day, I had completely had enough. The real tipping point was when it took us about 30 minutes to correct a pre-test that involved labeling the 13 colonies on a map. That should have taken 5 minutes. Chatty, chatty, chatty!!
Yes, I understand that the tests were tough on the kids. But come on, they were tough on me too! Okay, I guess I didn't have to actually take them, but honestly during one of the math tests I was walking around glancing down at the test booklets and got so nauseous reading the problems that I had to sit down for fear I would throw up. Yikes--and they expect my students to know all of this stuff???
Thankfully, they are done. I turned in my test booklets (Saturday I actually was overcome with a wave of terror, convinced that when I arrived at school Monday morning I would find my booklets stolen...see, I really have lost it), shredded my students' scratch paper, and washed my hands of the entire thing. I have officially done all I can, and there is no sense thinking any more about them now. Not for another year at least. :)
While I will miss the hour + of quiet time (I actually read 2 books last week during testing time! book reviews to come!) and not having any papers to grade, I will not miss spending every afternoon cramming and taking practice tests! I will also not miss the kids who, having restrained themselves from talking all morning long, go absolutely crazy every afternoon. I actually started working on my plans for next week and thought, "Wow, look at all this free time!! What did I used to teach every afternoon before we started using that time for ISAT prep??"
What a crazy, crazy school system we live in. Just think how much my students could have learned during the past month and a half if we weren't all so busy trying to prove that they ARE learning.
And so, until next year, the ISATs are no longer going to keep me awake at night :) Although I'm sure something else will! ;)