Tag Archives: Assessment (homeschool)

Placement Testing for fall

I and I admit I am a bit obsessive, am having Big do some “placement tests” for a home school curr — I am using it to see where he falls grade level wise.  The on-line testing shows where he should start or be placed according to their standards.  http://www.aceministries.com/assessments/ is the assessment page:  and the curriculum can be found here:  http://www.aceministries.com/curriculum/?content=main.

Chronically he is ending 2nd grade this month or next, and in the fall on 2014 he should be starting 3rd grade.

Spelling he just passed 2nd grade, he passed it but did not ace it, but they place him at the first unit of 3rd

Math he is placed at 2nd unit of 3rd — so a little ways “in” and not at the very start of 3rd.  He passes 6 units of 3rd and 2 units of 4th grade math — what he is lacking, as far as 3rd goes is multiplication and division, neither of which we have started.  He had some “gaps” in 2nd but they are material I feel confident he simply tested badly on as I feel he knows the topics.

Reading supposedly he passed 1st, 2nd and third; and they would place him in the first unit of 4th.  I am not so sure I agree.  The reading test was not all that detailed.   His reading is improving; but I don’t feel he is at the beginning of 4th.  However i am confident he is not totally behind his peers.  I’d like to see his reading a lot stronger.  I felt the reading test was the weakest test of the 4.

Grammar:  He has gaps, and I have to find out what they are, but he has NO GAPS till the end of 3rd grade.  After “fixing his gaps” the suggest placement of the 3rd unit of 5th grade.  (they boy loves grammar)

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Reviewing Kindergarten goals

As I get ready to move Big Brother into more and more First Grade Work; I have taken some time to review our kindergarten goals to be sure he is as ready as I feel he is for First.  He has mastered almost everything we set out as ‘to be learned in Kindy’.  There are a few things lacking, but I realized as I went though the list the things he “can’t do” are things I have not introduced or exposed him too.

So after reviewing this, our goals for the year, I feel even more sure he is ready to move on to First Grade curriculum.   I’ll intentionally hit on the final few items from this list, and start on First Grade.

 Items he has not had exposure to in RED

Items in BLUE he has some skill in, but not Mastery of 

Social Studies
  • Meanings of holidays, traditions, and customs
    * Individual’s role in family, home, school, and community
    * Relationship of the individual to the group
    * Safety rules and symbols
    * Basic human needs
    * Location / Diagram of home and other common location
  • Recognize events that reoccur (at specific times of the day or week).
  • Knowledge ofUSA– location on globe, national bird, distinct from other countries
  • Knowledge of where child lives (country, state, city)
  • 4 directions
  • Name of 7 Continents

 

Science
  • Observation of everyday, familiar things
    * Common animals and plants
    * Interrelationships of animals and plants
    * Classification of living things
    * Like and unlike plants
    * Weather and seasons
    * Temperature
  • Use a balance scale to compare the weight of two objects and identify which is heavier.
  • Simple measurement
  • Sort, order and classify — Sort and classify objects by attributes including size, shape, color, texture, orientation, position and use, and explain the reason for each sort.
  • Describe and make comparisons of qualitative and quantitative changes of a given pattern using terms such as warmer, softer, more, one more, less, one less, bigger, smaller, longer and shorter.
  • Identify and extend visual, auditory and physical patterns to make predictions.
  • Describe location, direction, and position of objects or parts of objects, using terms such as under/over, inside/outside, next to/near, top/bottom, in front of, first and last.
  • Pose questions about objects and events in the environment that can be used to guide the collection of data.
  • Collect data, record and the results using real graphs and picture graphs.
  • Arrange information in a systematic way using counting, sorting, lists and graphic organizers.
  • Describe measurable attributes of objects, such as length or weight. Describe several measurable attributes of a single object.
  • Directly compare two objects with a measurable attribute in common, to see which object has “more of”/“less of” the attribute, and describe the difference.
Speech / Communication
  • Following and giving directions
  • Use the most frequently occurring prepositions correctly (e.g., to, from, in, out, on, off, for, of, by, with).
  • Produce and expand complete sentences in shared language activities.
  • Participate in collaborative conversations with diverse partners
  • Follow agreed-upon rules for discussions (e.g., listening to others and taking turns speaking about the topics and texts under discussion)
  • Ask and answer questions in order to seek help, get information, or clarify something that is not understood.
  • Form regular plural nouns orally by adding /s/ or /es/ (e.g., dog, dogs; wish, wishes).
  • Understand and use question words (interrogatives) (e.g., who, what, where, when, why, how).
  • Relating events and experiences using complete sentences

 

Language Arts / Phonics /Reading
  • Social listening
  • Constructing visual images while listening
  • Paraphrasing and summarizing
  • Recognize and name end punctuation.
  • Follow words from left to right, top to bottom, and page by page
  • Understand that words are separated by spaces in print.
  • Recite familiar stories, poems, nursery rhymes, and lines of a play
  • Describe familiar people, places, things, and events and, with prompting and support, provide additional detail.
  • Print many upper- and lowercase letters.
  • Phonics

 

Health and Safety
  • Personal hygiene
    * Good eating habits
    * Good grooming
    * Care of teeth
    * Physical fitness
  • Major body parts
  • Name 5 senses and identify organ of use
Mathematics / reasoning
  • Simple counting to 100
  • Count to 100 by 2, 5 And 10.
  • Write numbers from 0 to 20.
  • Understand One-to-one relationship
  • Count forward beginning from a given number within the known sequence (instead of having to begin at 1).
  • Sequence of events
  • Recognize, reproduce, extend and create repeating patterns.
  • Measurement:
    * Concepts of more, less than, same.
    * Correspondence of quantities
    * Ordinal-cardinal relationship
  • Identify the ordinal position of objects: first, second, third, fourth, fifth and last.
  • Meaning of addition and subtraction
  • Act out and solve addition and subtraction story problems that reflect real-world experiences and contextual problems using sets of up to 10 objects and describe the strategy or reasoning used to solve a problem.
  • Solve addition and subtraction word problems, and add and subtract within 10.
  • Write the number sentences that correspond to story problems using addition, subtraction and equals symbols (+, -, =) correctly
  • Fluently add and subtract within 5.
  • Number line (Introduction and use for simple math)
  • Identify and describe familiar shapes (triangles, squares, rectangles and circles) and solids (cubes, spheres, cylinders, cones and prisms) in the environment.
  • Basic chart and graph concepts
  • Locate yesterday, today, and tomorrow on a calendar to sequence events and use terms such as before and after to compare events.
  • Complete simple shape and jigsaw puzzles
  • Compose simple shapes to form larger shapes
  • Model shapes in the world by building shapes from components (e.g., sticks and clay balls) and drawing shapes. writ writing

 

 

 

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goals met

Since I blogged tonight about looking on to Kindy for Big Brother and noted Daddy and I feel he has accompished, and the pre-k level, all that is important and necessary, and since Daddy and I agree he is a good place ‘school wise’ we are ‘offically closes his pre-school binder’.  (all rather silly i guess since pre-school is such a silly concept to start with, but it as good a term as any for lableing memory boxes i guess 🙂 ).  Here is the final list of ‘pre-school goals’ assessed for Big Brother as of now.  Some of the items inclused are just rather silly and I have left them black, many we did not even mess with; others are a matter of maturity and are just going to take time.

Pre-school Check List

Big Brother

2.8.11  (last one):

 Taken from:  http://www.worldbook.com/typical_course_of_study_preschool_curriculum_guide.html

 

  1. RED – MASTERED
  2. BLUE – he has not mastered
  3. GREEN – do not apply to us / him

Some I left black, I just think they are a bit over the top for pre-k. 

Size

* Understands big and little.
* Understands long and short.
* Matches shapes or objects based on size.

Colors and Shapes

* Recognizes and names primary colors.
* Recognizes circles.
* Recognizes rectangles.
* Matches shapes or objects based on shape.
* Copies shapes.

Numbers

* Counts orally through 10.
* Counts objects in one-to-one correspondence.
* Understands empty and full.
* Understands more and less.

Reading Readiness

* Remembers objects from a given picture.
* Knows what a letter is.
* Has been read to frequently.
* Has been read to daily.
* Looks at books and magazines.
* Recognizes some nursery rhymes.
* Identifies parts of the body.
* Identifies objects that have a functional use.
* Knows common farm and zoo animals.
* Pronounces own first name.
* Pronounces own last name.
* Expresses self verbally.
* Identifies other children by name
* Tells the meaning of simple words.
* Repeats a sentence of 6-8 words.
* Completes incomplete sentence with proper word.
* Has own books.
* Understands that print carries a message.
* Pretends to read.
* Uses left-to-right progression.
* Answers questions about a short story.
* Tells the meaning of words heard in story.
* Looks at pictures and tells a story.
* Identifies own first name in manuscript.
* Prints own first name.

Position and Direction

* Understands up and down.
* Understands in and out.
* Understands front and back.
* Understands over (on) and under.
* Understands top, bottom, middle.
* Understands beside and next to.
* Understands hot and cold.
* Understands fast and slow.

Time

* Understands day and night.
* Knows age and birthday.

Listening and Sequencing

* Follows simple directions.
* Listens to a short story.
* Listens carefully.
* Recognizes common sounds.
* Repeats a sequence of sounds.
* Repeats a sequence of orally given numbers.
* Retells simple stories in sequence.

Motor Skills

* Is able to run.
* Is able to walk a straight line.
* Is able to jump.
* Is able to hop.
* Is able to alternate feet walking down stairs.
* Is able to march.
* Is able to stand on one foot for 5-10 seconds.
* Is able to walk backwards for five feet.
* Is able to throw a ball.
* Pastes objects.
* Claps hands.
* Matches simple objects.
* Touches fingers.
* Able to button a garment.
* Builds with blocks.
* Completes simple puzzles (5 pieces or less).
* Draws and colors beyond a simple scribble.
* Able to zip a zipper.
* Controls pencil and crayon well.
* Cuts simple shapes.
* Handles scissors well.
* Able to copy simple shapes.

Social-Emotional Development

* Can be away from parents or primary care givers for 2-3 hours .
* Takes care of toilet needs independently.
* Feels good about self.
* Is not afraid to go to school.
* Cares for own belongings.
* Knows full name.
* Dresses self.
* Knows how to use handkerchief or tissue.
* Knows own sex.
* Brushes teeth.
* Crosses residential street safely.
* Asks to go to school.
* Knows parents’ names.
* Knows home address.
* Knows home phone number.
* Enters into casual conversation.
* Carries a plate of food.
* Maintains self-control.
* Gets along well with other children.
* Plays with other children.
* Recognizes authority.
* Shares with others.
* Talks easily.
* Likes teachers.
* Meets visitors without shyness.
* Puts away toys.
* Able to stay on task.
* Able to work independently.
* Helps family with chores.

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looking in the direction of kindergarden

Daddy and I feel Big Brother has for the most part mastered the skills he needs on the ‘pre-k level’ and are offically starting to look at and think about Kindergarten for him.  For a lark i took the goals i have currently saved for Kindergarten  (they really need fleshing out and expanding) and ‘assessed’ him on them as of today:   

Kindergarten Check List:

Big Brother

2.8.11

  • RED – Mastered
  • BLUE – he has not mastered but is working on
  • GREEN – do not apply to us / him
  • Black – not started yet

Social Studies

* Meanings of holidays, traditions, and customs
* Understanding and appreciating other cultures
* Individual’s role in family, home, school, and community
* Relationship of the individual to the group
* Work and jobs
* Safety rules and symbols
* Basic human needs
* Self-respect and self-awareness
* Awareness of others
* Location of home and school
* Diagram of home and school

Science

* Observation of everyday, familiar things
* Common animals and plants
* Interrelationships of animals and plants
* Classification of living things
* Farm animals
* Care of pets
* Like and unlike plants
* Indoor plants
* The sun: our principal source of energy
* Weather and seasons
* Temperature
* Light
* Colors
* Senses
* Earth, moon, stars, planets
* Simple measurement
* Beginning experimentation

Language Arts

* Phonics
* Choral reading
* Listening to literature, music, poetry
* Nursery rhymes, fairy tales, fables
* Social listening
* Constructing visual images while listening
* Oral communication skills
* Role play
* Following and giving directions
* Paraphrasing and summarizing
* Organizing ideas
* Experience stories
* Relating events and experiences using complete sentences
* Listening for correct speech habits and word usage
* Beginning writing process
* Manuscript handwriting

Health and Safety

* Personal hygiene
* Good eating habits
* Good grooming
* Care of teeth
* Major body parts
* Physical fitness
* Safety to and from school

Mathematics

* Simple counting to 20
* One-to-one relationship
* Concepts of more, less than, same
* Sequence of events
* Correspondence of quantities
* Ordinal-cardinal relationship
* Number-numeral relationship
* Recognition of basic sets
* Meaning of addition and subtraction
* Introduction to number line
* Estimation
* Elementary geometry (shapes)
* Calendar and clock
* Denominations of money
* Basic problem-solving strategies
* Basic chart and graph concepts

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Phonics “assessment” 9.20.2010

I have been working on “file folder games” for the boys – I love my laminator.  My games do not actually go in file folders, 🙂 , but that is the general idea.  Little educational games or “pieces” that can be manipulated.

So I have a set of letter cards (2 inches by 2 inches, black and white, block letters, cut apart and laminated).  A capital and a lower case of each of the 26 letters, plus a picture card for each letter completes the set.

I am not one for a lot of academic testing, ok I AM, but I am not one for pushing the child or telling them what is going on.  For my own benefit, and given professionals at schools asked, I thought I would see just where Big Brother’s phonics skill really are.  Daddy asked Big Brother several letter / sound pairs this moring in our ‘before getting up snuggle time’ and Daddy and I both got up amazed and pleased.

I posted yesterday about the fact that he seems in general to be “off” on a skill until one day there is a sudden explosion and in a week or 2, or less, the skill or ability is mastered.  Again, in May and June he could not rhyme at all, seemed almost random.  In August he started to “get them” and now is well above 95% for mastery.  Phonic seems to be following that same pattern; nothing, nothing, and now seemingly out of the blue; POOF he has a lot of the skills.  So I wanted to find out just where he stands.

Today Big Brother and I sat at the table and simply went though them; I am not the most creative momma, sadly.  I asked him to identify each letter and give the correct sound.  For picture cards, I asked him what letter or sound they start with.  The picture cards do have the word written on them, in addition to the picture, but when you are learning I don’t even think that is “cheating”.  I know today’s correct answer does not indicate complete mastery, I know there is a ‘forward and back and forward again” tone to really mastering fundamental skills / tool likes phonics; but at least this gives me a general idea of his level.

So there were 78 possible correct answers (26 + 26 + 26 = 78).  He only missed EIGHT – so that is 90%!!!!! That is, uh, if grades matters.  Giggle.  Grades really do not matter, not at this age.  Momma is kinda obsessed with check list and so on, but I admit it and try to laugh about it.  I am just amazed 2 or 3 weeks ago his mastery of this topic was so lacking, and now it is practically achieved.  A real confidence builder for MOMMA let me tell you.

He could not correctly identify:

  • Capital I
  • Capital Y
  • Capital w
  • Lowercase y
  • Lowercase n
  • Lowercase u
  • Lowercase q
  • Lowercase g

I am really proud of him.  Obviously the work on phonics doesn’t stop here, but it is clear that he is acquiring the tools he needs.

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Big Brother July 2010 “school assessment”

I think it is fairly we known at this point that we, as a family, plan to home school our children in the primary grades.  I think it is commonly well known that we do not support the “rush to school” that is so over-whelming these days.  I think it is rather clear that even if we were choosing to enroll in public schools we would not be using pre-school.  I will further state, and I doubt this is a surprise, that we are very troubled by the push to make compulsory education laws start younger and younger (as states like Iowa push to make preschool mandatory).  I will further state I personally feel a mistake was made in making Kindergarten 1. Mandatory and 2. Academic.  Note: Kindergarten is NOT legally mandatory in all 50 states, though few want to tell you that and none make such a fact a “well known fact”.   Actually it is only mandatory in 14 states.  14 states, bet you didn’t know that, I didn’t.

I have stated before, and I will state again that the rush, the push to cram academics younger and younger is not only sad it is dangerous.

That all being fact, I am a lover of check lists and do function, once in a while, in the reality populated by the majority of the rest of the population.  J  So when Big Brother turned 3 I sought out a solid check list of “things that should be accomplished in pre-school”.  Nothing overly academic, nothing ‘advanced’, just the basics. 

I found this site, a world book site:   http://www.worldbook.com/typical_course_of_study.htmlorld

Starting when Big Brother was 3 I printed this pre-school list out a couple of times a year and crossed off things he has mastered, noted what he had some skill out and noted to myself to look for opportunities to introduce or work on things he has no mastery of at all.  I did this mainly to have some outside resource to be sure I was not missing something obvious.  For example: you can not blame a 4.5 year old for not being able to use scissors when momma never gave him a pair to use. 

In October, in preparation of Little Brother turning 3 I will print the list out for him too.  J Sad huh, my baby, is going to be 3?  I am more amazed that my big boy, my first baby, is going to be 5!!!!!!

So my point here, many family members and friends read this blog to “know” the boys; to keep up with the boys.  So I decided this time, when I updated the accomplishment check list, this past week, that I should share it here for others to see who do not see the boys very often and may not really know how they are learning and maturing.

I have to say, each and every time I go though this list, checking off what Big Brother has mastered and looking at what it is apparently I am not giving him he opportunity to master, I am again and again amazed how God has created them to learn from life.  Big Brother asks to sit down and “do school” some, and we do – a dot-to-dot or a maze or 2.  But the vast majority of what my boys learn they learn without formal lessons.  And as you will note, while Big Brother is not “kindergarten aged” according to this state till fall of 2011 (so 13 or 14 months from now) you will see that he has mastered almost everything on the list now. 

Taken from:  http://www.worldbook.com/typical_course_of_study_preschool_curriculum_guide.html

Big Brother: As of July 2010 (4 y 8 months)

Size

* Understands big and little.
* Understands long and short.
* Matches shapes or objects based on size.

Colors and Shapes

* Recognizes and names primary colors.
* Recognizes circles.
* Recognizes rectangles.
* Matches shapes or objects based on shape.

* Copies shapes.

Numbers

* Counts orally through 10.
* Counts objects in one-to-one correspondence.
* Understands empty and full.
* Understands more and less.

Reading Readiness

* Remembers objects from a given picture.
* Knows what a letter is.
* Has been read to frequently.
* Has been read to daily.
* Looks at books and magazines.
* Recognizes some nursery rhymes.
* Identifies parts of the body.

* Identifies objects that have a functional use.
* Knows common farm and zoo animals.
* Pronounces own first name.
* Pronounces own last name.
* Expresses self verbally.
* Identifies other children by name
* Tells the meaning of simple words.

* Repeats a sentence of 6-8 words.
* Completes incomplete sentence with proper word.
* Has own books.
* Understands that print carries a message.
* Pretends to read.
* Uses left-to-right progression.
* Answers questions about a short story.

* Tells the meaning of words heard in story.
* Looks at pictures and tells a story.
* Identifies own first name in manuscript.
* Prints own first name.

Position and Direction

* Understands up and down.
* Understands in and out.
* Understands front and back.
* Understands over (on) and under.
* Understands top, bottom, middle.
* Understands beside and next to.
* Understands hot and cold.
* Understands fast and slow.

Time

* Understands day and night.
* Knows age and birthday.

Listening and Sequencing

* Follows simple directions.
* Listens to a short story.
* Listens carefully.

* Recognizes common sounds.
* Repeats a sequence of sounds.
* Repeats a sequence of orally given numbers.
* Retells simple stories in sequence.

Motor Skills

* Is able to run.
* Is able to walk a straight line.
* Is able to jump.
* Is able to hop.
* Is able to alternate feet walking down stairs.
* Is able to march.

* Is able to stand on one foot for 5-10 seconds.
* Is able to walk backwards for five feet.
* Is able to throw a ball.
* Pastes objects.
* Claps hands.
* Matches simple objects.
* Touches fingers.

* Able to button a garment.
* Builds with blocks.
* Completes simple puzzles (5 pieces or less).

* Draws and colors beyond a simple scribble.
* Able to zip a zipper.
* Controls pencil and crayon well.
* Cuts simple shapes.
* Handles scissors well.
* Able to copy simple shapes.

Social-Emotional Development

* Can be away from parents or primary care givers for 2-3 hours without being upset.
* Takes care of toilet needs independently.
* Feels good about self.
* Is not afraid to go to school.
* Cares for own belongings.
* Knows full name.
* Dresses self.
* Knows how to use handkerchief or tissue.
* Knows own sex.
* Brushes teeth.

* Crosses residential street safely.
* Asks to go to school.
* Knows parents’ names.
* Knows home address.
* Knows home phone number.
* Enters into casual conversation.
* Carries a plate of food.

* Maintains self-control.
* Gets along well with other children.
* Plays with other children.
* Recognizes authority.
* Shares with others.
* Talks easily.
* Likes teachers.
* Meets visitors without shyness.
* Puts away toys.

* Able to stay on task.
* Able to work independently.
* Helps family with chores.

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