Saturday, February 2, 2008

Intelligence Test

Finals. I was covering a 12th grade AP English class.

Their final consisted of over 50 multiple choice questions and one essay. I had to make sure that I got all of the tests back after they were finished (for test security). All the tests were numbered; I just had to make sure that I went through and counted them all.

Technically, keeping the tests in order was my job, but I wanted to see if they would catch on. They were old enough. They were smart enough. But were they paying attention?

The first three students that turned in their tests did not have enough information to go on. But then I had three tests to work with: #6, 14, and 26. I laid them out sideways with their numbers clearly showing and enough space to fit the missing numbers in between. The next two students to turn in their tests? They just laid them right on top.

The next group (I'm not sure why, but they tend to finish in packs) caught on. I went over to straighten out the tests, but four of the five were put in the proper place in the number sequence. Success! Unfortunately, the next group to finish just laid their tests right on top with no notice of the numbering system.

It alternated from there. I was not saying anything to them. I was just seeing if they would catch on. Some did. Some didn't. So, I kept fixing the tests so at any one time I knew which numbered tests were still out.

Then they were all just about finished. Only three tests were still out. Test #3 finished, and he laid his test right on top of test #2 (not under as he should have). But then #23 came up to the front and placed his test between #22 and #24. And then the only test still out was test #1. Well, he couldn't screw that up, so I was done.

Yeah, I know it's silly, but imagine sitting and watching a class for two hours. A silent class. A testing group. I needed something to entertain myself.

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