Homeschoolers face many questions. The questions we deal with would never be asked to a parent of a public school child. While we may be upset at times, we need to remember that not everyone understands what we have come to learn. That is why I am taking this week to answer questions that non-homeschoolers have.
Yesterday I answered the question about socialization, and today I am going to talk about testing. Not just the tests that are given throughout the year, but that once a year testing to see how the kids are learning.
The actual question that was asked on my personal Facebook page was “How are the children tested to make sure they are schooling, not just the home part?” At first, I was a little offended, kids learn just by being at home. But I remembered this was coming from someone who did not homeschool and was actually curious to know the answer.
Yearly Testing in Our Homeschool
In the state of Minnesota, we are required to have our children tested using a specific test or going to a facility to have them tested. This needs to be done every year. While we don’t need to turn these into the school district where we report to each year, we still need to do it.
What Do We Use
We use the online California Achievement Test (CAT) from Academic Excellence. This is an approved test in our state that we are able to do online or on paper. We love the online option so much. The kids are timed, take the test and submit it all online. I get immediate scores and results.
This test works through reading comprehension, math, and vocabulary. These are the main topics that all standardized tests cover. I know that by having my children take this test yearly, I am seeing the main results that I need to see.
What We Think
I am not a fan of the idea of testing our kids. They each learn at their own pace, so trying to test them and compare them to other children is not my ideal situation. However, I do like to see where they have strengths and where I need to help them a little more. I love doing this at home at our pace. Using this program allows me to give the children breaks as we need it. We don’t have to spend a whole day testing if we don’t want to, but if they are on a roll, we can keep going.
I may not be able to speak for every state, as each state has its own rules for testing or not, but here in Minnesota, we do take a yearly test to see how much our kids are learning.
Tomorrow I am going to talk about how we know what grade our child is in and not just based on their age! I hope to have you join me again for that!
I am taking part in the Not Back to School Blog Hop put on by the Homeschool Review Crew. head on over and check out the other posts from today right here:
Chareen @ Every Bed of Roses – ABC of Homeschooling
Dawn @ Schoolin’ Swag – Adding Fun to Your Homeschool Day
Erin @ For Him and My Family – Large Family Homeschooling