Tuesday, March 18, 2014


So... I love my job. I do. But like with any job, there are things you have to do that, frankly, you just don't wanna.  One of those such things is training. Another is standardized testing. And when you get those two crazy things together... well, it's a whole lotta don't wanna.

But whether you want to or not, it must be done. Before the actual standardized test training next week, we had to watch 3 training modules about standardized testing.

No. That is not a typo. It's exactly as clear as it sounds.

This is modern day education. Just like there are warnings like "Do not ingest" on tubes of Preparation-H because somewhere, somebody thought "Hey. This stuff I put on my butt? I wonder how it tastes" and then got sick and died, there are poorly-acted training videos set in the worst looking fake classroom because somebody, somewhere, thought "Hey, I've got 4 hours to let kids test in my room. Maybe I'll take a nap."

And now we all suffer because grown adults can't follow scripted directions, pay attention, and stop eating hemorrhoid cream. Such is life.

But because there's not anything top-secret in these videos, and because I was so tired of hearing the robotic voice explain to me what was happening in said videos, and because I was totally alone in my classroom at 6:30 PM with no one to whisper my snark to, I live-tweeted my experience between video segments. Luckily, I think everyone was watching the NCAA tournament play-in games and paid me no mind.

I have to admit, some of the scenarios were intriguing... students stealing test booklets and hiding them in their leather jackets from 1992...THEFT! A teacher who can't tell the difference between Roberto Martinez and Robert Martin... ILLITERACY! Teachers leaving their booklets, trusting another teacher to turn them in only to have that coarse villain violate privacy rules by looking at the test... BETRAYAL! A shady looking administrator leaving a teacher's door unlocked after "checking smoke alarm batteries"... ABUSE OF POWER!

It's enough to make someone certifiable. Or you know, just #CERTIFIED!

*Please note that all of the teachers referenced below are what I believed to be not-so-professional actors playing the role of some very questionable educators. Because, let's face it... video taping a classroom actually engaged in standardized testing is most likely against the rules. There wasn't a module mentioning it, but I'm sure there will be next year.

**Also, reading this blog post does not qualify you as having been "trained". This blog post cannot be used as module credit, will not print out a certificate, and could never do these videos the justice they so rightfully deserve.

***Plus, I had to watch; therefore, so do you.

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