Tuesday, May 02, 2006

Magic Pencils

We're taking the standardized test right now - and let me say that whoever thought it was a good idea to give eight year olds a really long, hard, scantron test obviously never had to administer it. I mean, I'm all for accountability, but this test is approximately FOURTEEN hours long for third grade (some parts of it are untimed, so it varies a little) over two weeks. It's ridiculous.

I gave them special pencils for the test and told them that these were their "magic pencils." I was mostly kidding, but they totally bought into it and are asking me how I made the pencils magic, and telling me that the magic pencils really do work.

One kid told me today that he was "being a pain" because he gets stressed out during the test. It's true - they all of a sudden have more needs than ever because they're worried and feel inadequate. And this group is needy to begin with! The minute the test gets passed out, they are all hungry, have to go to the bathroom, are going to die of thirst, need a Kleenex, have itchy bug bites, remember a relative who died that they're sad about, have something they have to go give to their sibling right now, their shoes are too small, they lost their earring, their braids hurt...

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