Monday, April 19, 2010

How the Life of a Test Grader Affects Test Scores

As the time for testing quickly approaches, students in Reading Workshop have the chance once again, to meet Martha, the Test Grader. 

Martha is a single mom, with a four year old daughter named Emily. Martha is just trying to get by day to day. This morning, at 6:00 AM, as Martha was getting ready for her job as an Achievement Test Grader in a state far, far, away, her babysitter called and said she couldn't watch Emily today.

After three phone calls, she finally reached her sister, who agreed to watch Emily for the day. The only problem was her sister lived 20 miles away, so Martha barely had time to get there, and then make it to work on time.

As she rushed around the kitchen, eating a piece of toast while she picked up, Emily spilled her cereal all over the floor. Five minutes later, after cleaning up the spill, Martha glanced at the clock and realized she was going to be late. She grabbed a cup of coffee to go, snatched up Emily and bolted out the door. She put Emily in the car, and jumped in her seat. As she reached across to buckle the seat belt, she spilled her coffee down the front of her shirt. "Oh @#$#@@#$," she thought.

She unbuckled Emily and ran back in the house to change. She searched high and low, but there was nothing clean to wear. She grabbed her cleanest dirty shirt out of the laundry, shook it out, and slid it on. Once again, she and Emily headed for her sister's house. Naturally, she hit a construction zone two minutes from her sister's. After sitting for 10 minutes, she finally got through. She sprinted in, gave Emily a kiss good bye, and headed off to work. She had 11 minutes to make the 20 minute drive.

She was lucky, the construction only held her up for 5 minutes this time through. Unfortunately, her head pounded with a migraine from the stress of the morning. And work hadn't even started yet.

She reached work, late again. She stopped by the pop machine, but didn't have any change for her morning dose of Diet Coke. As she rounded the corner, there stood her boss, with a mean look on his face, and her daily stack of tests to score.

"Late again, I see," he said with a scowl. "Don't even think about taking a break until you get this school's tests scored." With her head pounding, no Diet Coke, and no time for Advil, Martha reached for the first test. Martha, the test grader opened your test.

How will you score?
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Clix said...

I share this with our juniors as they get ready to take the high school writing test :)

Mr. McGuire said...

Maybe students will realize that test graders and maybe even teachers (no, really?) are people too. :)