One of the great things about homeschooling is kids don't always have to put pencil to paper when test time comes around. I typically make up an "official" science test for Sport at the end of each unit, but with other subjects, I tend to be a little more relaxed.
It probably goes without saying that Sport likes sports! Last year, early on in our homeschooling career he came up with a bowling game that allowed me to quiz him on pretty much any topic. We actually ended up using this as a form of assessment quite often. Here's how it goes:
I would take about 10 index cards and write questions on each one (math problems, social studies questions related to the continent we were studying, spelling words...). Then I would lay them out face down like bowling pins (1 on the first row, 2 on the second row, 3 cards on the third row, and 4 on the final row). He would stand about 5 feet away and roll a tennis ball toward the cards. We had a mat designed to go under a sleeping bag on camping trips that we would use for our ally, but it's not necessary. If the tennis ball rolled over any cards I would pick those up and call out the questions. If he answered correctly, the card was set aside. If incorrect, the card went back into the line-up for a second chance. I found this game was not only fun, but it gave me a great opportunity to find out how much he really knew. He was much more forthcoming with information when he could talk about it rather than being forced to write it down. It was also easy to dig a little deeper by keeping the conversation going and turning the question from one card into two or three.
Today we're going to break out the tennis ball and bowling alley mat again for the first time this year. I know he and Spice will be thrilled. We're wrapping up a short science unit on sound and musical instruments so I felt it would be easier to do a bowling quiz rather than make up a written exam. Spice hates to be left out of the fun so I always make her a hodge podge of questions.
Here's a look at their tests for today...
Sport (3rd grade):
-How does the shape of our ears help us hear?
-Why does a guitar have a hollow body?
-Give an example of a percussion instrument and a wind instrument.
-How does sound travel?
-What word tells the measurement of the number of waves that go by each second?
-What is pitch?
-How does the length of a wind instrument affect its pitch?
-What is a vibration?
-How does an echo work?
-Why is it louder when you clap your palms together rather than the backs of your hands?
Spice (age 4):
-What month is it?
-What is another word for autumn?
-What is 9-1?
-Spell the word how.
-What saint is known as the "Little Flower"?
-What is 5-2?
-Who were the first man and woman?
-Who is George Washington?
-Read this word...they.
-Would you like to have lived in colonial times? Why?