Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Sick of standardized testing? Bubble THIS in

© George Waters

With all the standardized testing our children undergo these days, if a child gets "left behind" it will only be because he was still bubbling answers in when the boat pulled away from the dock.

My kids, before their schooling is done and they begin their inevitable careers as underpaid but highly esteemed bloggers, will have endured, at a minimum, the STAR test, CAT/6, SAT, CAHSEE, and quite possibly the TACHS, COOP, SSAT, ISEE, SHSAT, the FAB 4 and the Dave Clark 5.

So I have developed a test of my own, which combines all of the tests above into one, in an effort to simplify life for the students of our nation, and also to sell my weighty and expensive study guide. I call my test the "ASSI-9." 

Below are a few sample questions:
1. Which of the following may be said about the American Revolution?
a) The food wasn't as good as the French one
b) Say what you want, they had great hats
c) The book was better than the movie
d) Every time Paul Revere yelled "The British are coming!" everyone had to drink a shot

2. 4 (x - y) = 4x - 4y is a good example of:
a) things I used to know
b) what am I, Stephen Hawking?
c) I was never very good at geometry
d) I missed that lesson because my piercing totally got infected

3. What is meant by the phrase "He wears his heart on his sleeve"?
a) The transplant did not go exactly as planned
b) His feelings are always easy to figure out, since he is screaming in agony
c) He has absolutely no fashion sense when it comes to organs
d) You should see what he wears on his tie

4. Cats claw your furniture into ribbons, urine-mark your walls and deliver small dead rodents to your feet. Based on this information, we can deduce that:
a) owning a cat might be fun
b) cats never attack large rodents
c) cats think your feet are their master
d) a Broadway show is no place for cat-themed entertainment

5. Henry David Thoreau lived alone in the woods for two years. Historians now know that during this time he:
a) plowed through a heck of a lot of pork rinds
b) could never, no matter how hard he tried, get past 93 bottles of beer on the wall
c) gained new human insight into nature as a way of picking up babes
d) invented the "I spent two years staring at a pond and all I got was this lousy" t-shirt

6. If 257 x 900 = 900 x a, what is the value of a?
a) Nowhere near what it was back in '99
b) What is the value of a what?
c) "Value" is the bourgeois conceit of capitalist running dogs
d) I was never very good at geography

As you can see, my test very much lives up to its name. In this, it is exactly like every other test your child will take, but with mine, the dozen standardized tests your child might otherwise have had to endure are compressed into one, the most important one, the one for which I get paid.

Please contact your school board and tell them you want your child to take an ASSI-9 test today. I have no doubt they will be happy to oblige.