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The Daily Bobcat

Is a high score the only high school goal?

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In the current educational system, it seems like everyone is learning material just to score high on a test. Especially in the spring, the schedule is filled with numerous state tests for all grades. Kids are on edge about their potential grades and teachers begin to rush information to apply it on test day.  And while tests are a great mark for understanding a subject, a test should not be the only goal. Students should learn for the sake of furthering their knowledge and benefiting their schools, not for a grade to the state.

With this current system comes a stigma that learning is unenjoyable. It is understandable when the only thing you learn is followed with the phrase “and know this for a test”, not because it will help you later in life. Students are pressured to read extra books on a specific schedule and it can bring resentment against the book, author, or reading as a whole. This takes the joy out of learning. Few people would be excited to be reading a book when a standardized test looms over their heads. While teachers try to give interesting assignments and discussion, how do you expect students to do well when they have no interest or motivation to learn?

It lends students not to understand the material in front of them, just how to get an A. While some students are able to pick up on this information, others are not able to in a fast paced learning environment. They don’t know the reasoning behind it but just to get it done, and fast. The most I have learned in math was the year my teacher have reasoning behind the numbers. For each problem, they would explain what the numbers meant not just “because it is”. Id students are given these lessons they will Reasoning gives more dimensions and understanding to the information.

When students so understand the information it is then applied to a test. There are many strategies taught to students on how to apply this information. They are taught to “take your time” but also fill out every answer and get it correct. On a timed test we are taught strategies for not finishing because the teachers know its an unreasonable time given. To pick a letter a bubble it in when rushed. There is no questioning this method or a creative way to solve a problem. Instead of going through reason kids are taught there are only four possibilities to any question. No give to anything just right or wrong. So while they can ace a test, how many will remember it next year?

These standardized test are a good way to mark how far and how well students are comprehending materials.  But they should not count toward their future. How can a student perform at their fullest when they can’t focus on the information? The stress and anxiety over a test that could change their future. These tests can cause a lack of sleep that affects the score and their whole week. Periods or valuable learning time is spent registering for exams. Tests similar to Advanced Placement, AIR, ACT, and SAT that could alter a college decision or scholarships opportunities.  How can you be expected to score high and represent your school when you don’t know over half of the information to prove a point about standards?

So when the year is complete what will you remember? You will remember the stress and exhaustion of early morning test and the perfect score you studied all year for. You probably won’t remember though all the long passages and practice papers. But what will it earn you? Is all you get a good score?  A few tests should not determine a student’s whole high school career.

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The student news site of Bowling Green High School
Is a high score the only high school goal?