Sunday, November 24, 2013

Creating Exam Questions

When we create our exam questions, we follow a similar process every time.

First, I make a list of what we’ve studied and the developmental needs of the age.

I ask the kids to demonstrate their knowledge in 1 of 6 methods of expression/communication:

creative (handicraft, recycled material project, diorama, cooking, land art, or art media: collage, paint, mold, chalk, pencil)
    oral (presentation: Describe, Explain, Defend, Persuade, judge, compare/contrast, inform, interview, narration) 
      written (narration, journal entry, letter, persuade, problem/solution, instructions, list, poetry) 
        visual (diagrams, blow-outs, maps, graphic organizers, chart, poster, pamphlet)
          movement (play, puppet show, music, dance, pantomime, video (still, animated, silent, movie)
            analytical expression (game, puzzle, crossword, word search, code)


            Looking at how I've grouped the subjects, I try to match up the type of expression/communication with what would flow most naturally.

            Then I use questions that allow them to apply what they’ve learned to synthesis information.


            1.Characterization: What do they think? How do they feel? How do they react or act in certain situations or with other characters? How do they influence the people around them? How do they make us feel? Could we be friends with them or should we run when we see them coming? How did ____ influence ________? Can you explain the relationship between...? What are/were the consequences...? Can you explain what must have happened when...? What motive is there...? Who will gain and who will lose? How does ______’s decision impact the story or other characters?

            2.    View point: Not just, “Who is telling the story?” Are they reliable, can they be trusted? What may they be holding back? How does someone else in the story feel about those same events? Why should we or shouldn’t we see and feel things the same way they are being portrayed? How did ____ influence ________? What are/were the consequences...? Can you explain what must have happened when...? What were some of the motives behind...?

            3.    Background: In addition to the setting (where and when)…What does it mean to live in that time of history? Who was ruling or in charge then? How did people dress? What was a day in their lives like? What do their homes look like? How did they go about their day? How is it different for them than it is for you? How did ____ influence ________? Can you explain the relationship between...? What are/were the consequences...?

            4.    Mood: How does the story make you feel? Does the mood of the story affect the characters or are the characters making the mood? How would you feel being there with them? Are you scared, content, worried, anxious, joyful? What are/were the consequences...? Can you explain what must have happened when...?

            5.    Drama, Movement, and Change: What happens to change the character? How are their lives better or worse from the events happening to them and around them? Do the characters change over time or is it sudden? What kind of a change is it? Physical? Geographic? Emotional? What part does the character have in the changes? Is the character doing the changing or is the change or event happening to the character? How did ____ influence ________? Can you explain the relationship between...? What are/were the consequences...? Explain what is happening when the author says...  What was the turning point? Can you explain what must have happened when...? What may/could have happened to change the course of events? Why did ... changes occur? What are some of the problems of...?  What had the most influence on the outcome and how do you know? Explain how _______came to be?

            6.    The Greater Meaning: How does it impact the characters? Would it have impacted them the same way? What is the story of the story? What does it say about the human condition? How did ____ influence ________? Can you explain the relationship between...? What are/were the consequences...? What examples can you find to support...? What conclusions can you draw about...? What influence will ___ have on our lives? 

            Here are some of our sample exams.

            Wishing you homeschool blessings,


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            2 comments:

            Phyllis said...

            This is a great post! Thank you for writing it.

            Bethany said...

            Terrific I'm so glad you like it.

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