I’m reading Anya Kamenetz’s new book The Test: Why Our Schools are Obsessed with Standardized Testing – But You Don’t Have to Be. IMG_9297For one, I’m interested in Anya’s perspective on the topic of testing in public schools because I have my opinions due to my work with schools, teachers, etc. Two, she’s written this book with parents as her intended audience. As a parent, I say, “Finally! We need more resources to help navigate what all the test scores actually mean for our children and the schools they attend.” Third, I’ve read, enjoyed and learned from Anya’s other two books: DIY U and Generation Debt.

Here is short description about The Test from the inside cover. When I read this, I found myself nodding in agreement and giddy to read the book. I am so excited I had to share:

Your child is more than a score. But in the last twenty years, schools have dramatically increased standardized testing, sacrificing hours of classroom time. What is the cost to students, teachers, and families? How do we preserve space for self-directed learning and development–especially when we still want all children to hit the mark?

The Test explores all sides of this problem–where these tests came from, their limitations and flaws, and ultimately what parents, teachers, and concerned citizens can do. It recounts the shocking history and tempestuous politics of testing and borrows strategies from fields as diverse as games, neuroscience, and ancient philosophy to help children cope. It presents the stories of families, teachers, and schools maneuvering within and beyond the existing educational system, playing and winning the testing game. And it offers a glimpse into a future of better tests. With an expert’s depth, a writer’s flair, and a hacker’s creativity, Anya Kamenetz has written an essential book for any parent who has wondered: what do I do with all these tests?

I am going to end tonight’s post so I can read The Test before bed. If you are also reading The Test, please let me know. I welcome your thoughts about testing in schools. Thanks!

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