\doc\web\97\08\samptest.txt
Reading and math samples
Note - the 50th percentile level of performance was just at the upper
edge of "1" equal almost zero level of performance or understanding,
only the top 20% met the standard, only 70% met the standard at the
best school in the greater Seattle area, where 90% were above
national average on the CTBS, and only 2% f/r lunch in Bellevue's
Somerset school. The goal is 100% above standard for all students,
which would imply every student at the worst school performing
better, on average, than Somerset. Sure, no problem. And if you
believe that one....
from
http://csl.wednet.edu/Web%20page/Assessment/Pilot4/Pilot_menu.html
Test samples
Reading
Sample Passage Summary
Students read a short passage, summarized here, explaining what the
word camouflage means and how it works.
Animals in nature have a special way of hiding. The color of their
skin or coat blends with the color of their surroundings and makes
them hard to see. This is called camouflage.
If you want to find out how camouflage works, take some toothpicks of
different colors, including green, natural wood, and red. Scatter
these toothpicks, one color at a time, over a small area of green
grass. Which toothpicks are easiest to see in the grass? Which are
hardest to see?
NOTE: Because most of the reading passages are copyright protected,
only a summary of the passage is reproduced here.
1. In the activity described in the selection, which of these colors
would be easiest to find?
A. Green
B. Natural wood
C. Red
2. What is the author's purpose for writing this selection? Circle a
phrase given below.
To tell a story
To explain an idea
To describe a setting
Explain your choice.
3. Make up an activity different from the one in the selection to
show how camouflage works. Be sure to tell
(1) what materials you need and
(2) what steps you will take
My camouflage activity:
Materials to use:
Steps to take:
4. In your own words tell the meaning of the word camouflage.
Task 1: Page 1 | Task 1: Page 2 | Task 1: Page 3 | Task 1: Page 4 |
Task 1: Page 5 | CSL Homepage
Writing
Directions: Today you will do a writing assignment. The magazine
column below, "Advice Column," is meant to give you ideas for the
assignment. Read the column to yourself while it is read to you.
Advice Column
Dear Guest Advice Columnist,
I have an idea, and I'd like to see what you think about it. I'm a
fourth grader who thinks the school day should be longer. Now, before
you say "What?!" please read the rest of my letter.
If we had a longer school day, we could have more days off! That
would mean longer vacations during the school year or for the summer.
Suppose we went to school one hour more each day. That would make
five hours a week. If there are about four weeks in a month, that
would make 20 hours a month. That's almost two full days each month!
What do you think about my idea? Do you think other kids would like
it? Do you think my principal and teachers would go for it?
Signed,
Curious
In this letter, a fourth grader wants advice about an idea to make
the school day longer. Your writing assignment is to pretend that you
are the advice columnist and will write a letter to the person
explaining what you think about the idea. Is it a good idea? Why or
why not? Think about the advantages and disadvantages of having a
longer school day. Make sure you answer the questions that are at the
end of the person's letter, and explain your answers.
On the next page is a checklist for you to follow in order to do your
best writing. Before you begin writing, read the checklist to
yourself while it is read to you. Read it again before and after you
write your final draft, and put a checkmark in each box when you
think you have done that part of the checklist.
Go On >
4th grade Math --
http://csl.wednet.edu/Web%20page/Assessment/Pilot4/Math_1.html
Eddie wants to find the height of the school flagpole below. The only
measuring tool Eddie has is a 12-inch ruler.
Tell one way Eddie can figure out the height of the flagpole. Explain
all your steps clearly. Use words, numbers, or pictures.
Picture shows building, fire hydrant, and the flagpole casting a
shadow on the ground.
F P
/ /
/ /
/
(Geez, can you solve this problem without trigonometry??)
1 - use trigonometry by matching the apparent size of the ruler to
the flagpole, and measuring the distance away as the base of a
triangle with the ruler at the far end
2 - attach the ruler to the rope so that it falls when it hits the top, count
aloud to measure it time it takes to fall to the ground, use the gravitational
constant to solve for the height.
3 - measure the length of the shadow of the fire hydrant, compare
that to the actual height and establish the "scale". Measure the
length of the shadow of the flag pole, and multiply by the same scale
factor. This will only work on a sunny day with a clear shadow.
---
Look at the four digits below.
3 1 8 5
Change the order of the digits to make the greatest number possible.
Write the new number on the line.
Use these same digits to make the smallest number possible. Write
that number on the line.
Explain what you had to think about to make your numbers. Use words,
numbers, or pictures.
--
You have three different bags of marbles. Each bag contains black and
white marbles. Which bag gives you the best chance of picking a white
marble?
A - 2 black 1 white
B - 5 black 3 white
C - 2 black 2 white
(you have to compare and reduce fractions 1/3, 3/8, 2/4, and
compute probability)
---
Eric plans to use the box shown below to hold his baseball cards.
(box evidently can hold 1 row of cards on end, ruler is provided)
Explain how Eric can estimate the number of cards this box can hold
without putting any cards in the box.
---
Which of the following is a reasonable estimate of the width of a
sheet of notebook paper?
A. About 20 millimeters
B. About 20 centimeters
C. About 20 kilometers
(You have to memorize that a standard sheet in the US is 8.5" wide by
11" high, something not generally taught unless you are in a habit of
reading the label when you buy the paper, and multiply 8.5 by 2.54
conversion factor which you have to memorize, if you have a
calculator, but then many have cm conversion built in if they allow
calculator use, otherwise it's long hand multiplication of a 2 by 3
digit number which isn't much fun. But then the "trick" is to realize
that the answers are all off by a an order of magnitude, and the
centimeter one is the only one that makes sense without an exact
conversion)
Students tested different brands of batteries to see how long they
would power the same flashlight. They tested 20 batteries of each
brand. The students graphed the results below:
Here's the frequency histogram:
Brand A:
x xxx
xxxxxxx
x xxxxxxxx
+----+----+----+
0 10 20 30
Brand B:
x x xx
x x xx
x xxxx xxxxxxx
+----+----+----+
0 10 20 30
Brand C:
x
x
x
xx x
xx x
xxxx
x xx xxxx
+----+----+----+
0 10 20 30
Which brand of battery should you buy if you need your batteries to
last at least 10 hours? Explain your thinking. Use words, numbers, or
pictures.
Solution:
1) Unclear as to how this would be scored, this might meet the
standard even though it does not meet the question as well as
the next solution.
Find the highest median
Compute the median by counting halfway (10) from the top, down
Take the one with the highest median
a: halfway point is 19
b: halfway point is between 20 and 21
c: all but 17 are above 22, so
the median is well above 22
Answer: "C" has the highest median value, assuming that lasting at
least 10 hours means the longest lasting one. In real life, this
would be a safe assumption.
2) (This appears to be the best therefore, only correct solution, it
is a trick question because the one with the highest average life
isn't the one least likely to last less than 10 hours.)
Strategy: Find the lowest probability of battery lasting less than 10
hours Count the total number of x's, then count the number that fall
below 10 hours. Ignore the number above 10 hours, that's not actually
relevant to the answer.
a: 1 below 10
c: 3 below 10
d: 3 below 10
Answer: A has the lowest probability of not lasting at least 10
hours, compared to 3 out of 20 for the other two. This is counter to
the intuitive assumption that the one with the highest median will
has the lowest probability of short life.
(What the heck is this? Most high schoolers only see frequency
histograms in advanced science classes, not in normal math and
certainly not in the 4th grade. You have to interpret intermediate x
tic marks, ask if they're just asking for the battery with the
longest average, which is just about impossible to computer, or
median, which you could eyeball as giving the edge to the last one
since all but 3 x's are above 20, but a much larger fraction of the
others is below 20)
Bird feeder problem from:
SEATTLE: NEW REFORM TEST DIFFICULT, GRADES ON EXPLANATION, NOT
CORRECT RESULT
http://www.seattletimes.com/extra/browse/html97/test_072197.html
Copyright © 1997 The Seattle Times Company Monday, July 21, 1997
Education reform's first test faces examination by the public
Sample Math Problem
Teachers say the math section of the new fourth-grade test is
particularly difficult, requiring students to read story type problems
and answer questions with words, numbers and drawings. Many
problems require a number of steps to reach the correct answer. This
question is typical:
Problem: Your class project is to build a bird feeder. Explain how
you could use the information given to find the total cost of the
materials. use words, numbers, or pictures.
Parallel projection 3D picture: bird sits on a tray on post,
dimension lines drawn 60 inches tall from top to bottom of post,
bottom of post is in cutaway of ground in cement.
+------+
/ /
/ /
+------+ +-----------+
| ^ | |
| | | +--+ |
| 60 inches | | | |
| | | +--+ |
| | +-----------+
#|#v
###
###
Top view: 4 Screws attach to post, dimensioned as 60 inches tall,
cement mounting in ground is in drawing, post connection piece drawn
in dotted lines, dimension lines are set on tray bottom 2 feet
square, tray frame made of wooden strips
Table:
Item cost per unit
------------------------------
Wooden post $2.50 per foot
Strips for
tray frame $1.00 per foot
Tray bottom $6.00
tools, screws, nails, wood glue, and cement mix - donated by
parents
Example problem shows a bird house with a platform of a certain size,
and material at a certain cost. The solution was not just to get the
right answer, in fact, the explanation was graded more important than
a right answer.
Solution: Times 5 by 2.50 and get $12.50 for the wooden post. for
each side of the tray, times 4 by 2 and get 8. the tray bottom (sic)
is $6 and the rest is donated by parent. You add $12.50, 48 and $6
together and get a total of $26.50
source: Washington State Commision on Student Learning
Comment - You have to deal with english foot / inch conversion, so
the given answer starts out wrong! You have to divide 60 inches by 12
to get 5 feet, which you either have to with a calculator, long
division by hand, or memorize, common for adults familiar with 5 ft
high 60" people, but not 4th graders. The answer does not tell what
part of the table 4 by 2 (4 sides by 2 feet per side strip) comes
from.
For a tray, you have to know enough 3D geometry to know that it has a
bottom and 4 sides. You also have to be trained to read 3-view
construction drawings, and the meaning of dotted lines, and dimension
arrows, something most kids don't get until they take mechanical
drawing in high school, and something boys and whites are better at
than girls or minorities.
You have to know how posts attach to screws, how wooden "strips"
attach to a "frame", how a post is set into cement, and how to read a
table. In short, there's no way this is fourth grade material, I
imagine even an average 50th percentile 10th grader would be hard
pressed to get this one completely correct.
If a fourth grader understands the basic four functions of plus,
minus, multiplication and division, that should be plenty without
having to master shop as well.
Skills inventory for this problem -
----------------------------------
reading comprehension
"donated by parents" equals zero cost
writing
addition
multiplication
division
reading 3D projection drawing
reading top view
dimension lines in 3D and top view
perimeter
hidden lines
screw attachment
cement achoring
post
tray
strips for tray edger
reading table
english foot / inch conversion
memorization of 5ft = 60 inches