Saturday, November 16, 2019
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Demo of new math question types on PARCC online tests

I posted an eight-minute video to the Maryland Assessments.org site for use by teachers, parents, and students. The video gives a very quick demonstration of some of the new, technology-enhanced question types that students will see on the PARCC tests next spring, if they take the tests online.

This video uses the high school math classes (algebra I, geometry, and algebra II) for demonstration purposes. Other videos will be released in the next few weeks showing math question types for younger grades, as well as new English language arts question formats for high school, middle school, and elementary school.

Whatever your political beliefs may be about these tests, schools have no choice but to administer the tests to students. Schools are, in general, law-abiding, and federal law requires that they administer tests o every students in certain grades and subjects.

There’s really no getting around the federal law. I hope it’s changed in the next Congress, but I’m not holding my breath: the law itself was a Bush initiative, despite having strong bipartisan support, and Republicans are now in charge.

Because schools have no choice, if you live in a PARCC state, including both Maryland and Illinois, please introduce your students to this training, which uses PARCC’s published practice tests.

The more comfortable students are with the test-taking environment (called TestNav 8), the better able they’ll be to perform on the tests based on their mastery of the material, not on how unfamiliar they are with the online test delivery software.

Paul Katula is the executive editor of the Voxitatis Research Foundation, which publishes this blog. For more information, see the About page.

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