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A home school placement test can come in quite handy when it comes to choosing curriculum. The only thing you might have to watch is that it doesn't cause your child too much stress.
Parents want to make sure they get material that is appropriate for their child's age or grade level. Placement tests can be used as a diagnostic tool to help evaluate where the student stands. Most tests will tell you what grade level your child has completed and give recommendations on what book or level they should begin.
The most common types of tests are reading and math. These are very important subjects and are fairly easy to measure. You can find many tests online or you can use the chapter tests in the books that you have to be able to tell whether your child understands the material.
Alpha Omega - Look for "free resources" on
the right and click on "Diagnostic Tests". This will give you access to
the tests for Switched
on Schoolhouse, Horizons
Math, and Alpha
Calvert - They provide lower and upper level assessments.
Sonlight - Type "placement tests" in search box to see all tests available for reading, Singapore Math, Saxon Math, Horizons and Teaching Textbooks.
Reading Level - Free test at National Right to Read Foundation
Another option that many parents overlook is the learning style assessment. This has been the biggest key for me in being able to choose appropriate material for my children. The beauty of homeschooling is that parents can choose an individualized learning plan for each child! We don't have to be stuck in the box of curriculum if that is not what is best for our child.
Some states require parents to have their children tested at the end of each school year or have their children assessed by a certified teacher.
states require testing and others will accept academic
assessments. Placement tests are used at the beginning
of a year or at the end of a year to decide which grade or level of
book is to be used the next year.
The end of each semester is a good time to do a homeschool evaluation. January is a good time to evaluate your curriculum or resources to see if it's really necessary to "finish that book." Many times "finishing the book" can be the worst drudgery that a child has to face. There are many ways to learn and parents need to evaluate whether their method of teaching or the materials they are using are really what their child needs at the time. I encourage you to do a semester evaluation using my evaluation form.
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