Costa Rica,  Homeschooling,  Wendi's Daily Blog

Quarantine Day #62 . . . What’s Up for this Week?

Well . . . I am feeling MUCH better, compared to last Monday. This means that I need to really ponder where to “runaway” to this week, so we don’t have a repeat of last week.

We are supposed to hear this Friday what restrictions Costa Rica will lift, and will also still practice . . . but we are hoping for the airport, the national parks, and maybe some beaches to open? 🤷🏻‍♀️

But until then, this week has brought the beginning of taking placement, (ahhh-hum) I mean achievement tests.

I must be honest. I have mixed emotions towards asking my children to do this.

For one, a test can never truly measure all you know or “should” know at any given point and time in one’s unique life.

Secondly, I don’t agree with how most tests are created. The questions can be irrelevant, redundant, or too simplified, which can create frustration, confusion, and a feeling of being tricked. Unless one loves to take tests, or has been trained to test well, the testing experience can create a lot of negative emotions and consequences.

But tests can also help you understand how man judges one another, thus allowing you to know how that feels and then ask yourself the tough question . . .

Do I believe that God measures me like a test (or how man) does?

I truly hope that each of my children can honestly answer this question in a truthful way that “NO! God does not judge us like a man-made test tries to.”

I love this “Mormonad”. It is from my youth and I had it hanging up in my own bedroom for all my teenage years. (The scripture is too small to see, so it is here👇🏻.)

I don’t know that I allowed myself to let only God judge my worth . . . Instead of man . . . until recently. And that skill is still a work in progress for me. But I have met plenty of people who learned about this skill and worked to acquire it for themselves in their teenage years, or at least well before I did. So I truly hope that my children will be blessed to acquire this skill sooner than later!

Maybe I will need to write my own tests to give to each child one day, but until then, we have felt to again use the CAT Academic Excellence test. Curly Cook is our first participant. Yesterday proved to be a bumpy first start because of what we had to do to just get the test up and going.

Then we had a moment of truth. This is hard for a momma to admit, especially a Homeschool Momma. But I can see why parents aren’t around on testing days in public/private schools. We know what they are trying to communicate, because we speak their language. But the test can’t be accurate if anyone is “helping” them.

So we needed to make some immediate changes. Thankfully only 2 of the 10 tests had been taken when we realized our error. So we stopped, asked for the tests to be restarted, and then we purchased a practice test so Curly Cook could ask ALL of her questions and feel more familiar with the test. Then today she started her test ALL alone!

Yep. It was hard to walk away. Thankfully I needed to still take a shower (it was already 3:00 p.m. 🤦🏻‍♀️ – I seriously feel like this Pandemic is like having a new baby in the family). I left her on the couch in my room, while I got ready to take a shower. But before I could, she was finished.

I asked her if she wanted help to take a second test and she looked at me, with exhaustion and stress in her face, and said pleadingly, “No. I’m done Mom. I just want to know my grade.”

Poor kid. We don’t do grades in Homeschool. We learn to understand, not to earn grades. So my heart ached for her to have to face her “grade”. She handed me the laptop she had been using and I quickly glanced at the score she had already found for herself. I looked at her questioningly and she said, “I only asked because I don’t know what it means.”

I looked at the score and it showed a 90. She could easily figure out how many questions she missed, but she didn’t understand the rest of the scores. She asked what 90 meant. I told her that it was her percentage on the test. She simply asked, with a bit of fear and trembling swarming about her mind,” Is that good mom?”

I wanted to hip and holler HOORAY!!!! But I knew in that moment I had a choice to make. This is a teaching moment that could possibly stay with her for the rest of her life. Our children are so impressionable. Instead, I dug deep and asked a quiet prayer for what to say. What came to me was a simple, “You did great sweetheart. I am really proud of you for taking that test on your own. Had you not done that, this wouldn’t be an honest score, but it is and it says that you are learning very well. I’m so happy for you.”

She smiled in relief and then asked what the 8.3 meant. Well, that’s a bit tricky to explain. It means that a child in the 8th grade and 3rd month of 8th grade would have gotten the same score on this particular test. It doesn’t mean that our daughter is on an 8th grade level, because 8th graders would take an 8th grade level test, not 5th grade.

After a brief explanation, she simply shrugged her shoulders and said, “I get it mom. I’m okay. I’m just glad I passed.”

I smiled in relief, “Me too sweetie.” And off she went.

She is such a sweet girl. I pray that she will be careful and guard her self worth at all times, just like I hope she is doing now. I feel a sense of relief that this experience happened, just like it did the last 2 days.

For I trust that these experiences aren’t really about having tests to prove to the USA that my child is indeed learning, but that this experience is on a higher, God-like level. I feel that this experience was uniquely created to help teach us what self worth truly is and that it has true value.

I hope Curly Cook learned a bit of this truth today. And maybe you did too!

Happy Tuesday,


  • Allison Owen

    This is such great news! I’m so proud of Curly Cook! But I’m proud of you too!! You handled the situation beautifully!! Oh and I 100% agree with you about standardized testing! 👎🏻

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