So I’m guessing that you can already deduce that I’m not a big supporter of NAPLAN. In fact, I think it’s a total waste of time. Teachers do teach to these tests. Children (I can only speak for primary-aged kids, since that’s where I work) do worry about them and get stressed by them. Children in regional and remote schools are disadvantaged by them. The tests disrupt the entire school community – lots of other lessons have to change around in the weekly timetable, there needs to be silence in the school, and it’s tiring for everyone. The list goes on….
So I’ve been wondering today, and thinking about what I think children should be tested on. Actually, it was quite fun. (Maybe you’d like to add to the list…) Here’s the start of my list – in no particular order:
- How many songs can a child sing, and can they adjust the words to at least one of them to make someone laugh?
- How many pieces of art can they create in a day?
- How can they be kind to someone who looks like they are having a hard time? How many ways can they come up with to make that person feel better?
- Can they create a garden, and care for it?
- Can they devise a game outside, and get someone to play the game with them that isn’t in their friendship group?
- Can they cook a meal using fresh ingredients?
- Can they negotiate a situation that is going a way that they don’t like without using names, or force?
- Can they control their emotions when they lose in a game?
Wouldn’t these skills be better than what are tested at the moment? Maybe?