I'm curious what your thoughts are on the "Not on the Test" song? Do you think our focus on standardized testing is causing our brightest students not to "think?"

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I fear our incessant testing has had a dreadful impact the classroom, particularly on anything that goes untested. Creativity is one of the most vital components of success, both collectively and individually. Not all creativity is necessarily specific to the arts--there are creative scientists, politicians, etc. I would argue that the creative ones are most likely among the most successful in their field. I embedded the video on my blog a while ago. I was talking about PD for teachers and web2.0 recently (not at my school) and had someone say "but this won't affect test scores." No, it won't. I can't argue convincingly that it will, although I can talk about how engagement can't help but have an impact on assessment.

Have you seen this video? We will need all the creativity we can muster to solve the world's problems. We desperately need our artists and musicians to remind the rest of us of the importance of the arts.
This is a very powerful video. Thank you for sharing it. I'm afraid that if I shared this with the teachers in my current district, I would get the same reaction from them....

It appears NPR cut out the part of the song about "The school board is faced with No Child Left Behind."
That one must be a re-do of the visuals. Here's the version from Tom Chapin's website, which definitely mentions NCLB:
Thank you for sharing these unedited videos. The presenter for Intel's Thinking with Technology workshops I'm attending shared the NPR audio with us last week. I wasn't aware of the Teacher Tube & You Tube videos. I've recently resigned my district level position of Math/Science/GT Coordinator and accepted a campus level technology integration specialisit (K-3) positon due in part to the importance of TAKS testing. What happened to teaching the "whole child" instead of teaching "the test?"
Thanks for sharing this, CC. I passed this along to others in my blog today, and then after coming back here was pleased to see that others had already found the other links related to this song. It's a shame that nearly everyone knows that the system is not working, but we continue to work within it. I hope we can create some critical mass soon to see real change.
This was my first time hearing the song "Not on the Test" and I think it brings up some very valid points about testing. I think in many ways standardized tests are not testing our students on the higher order thinking skills that they need, such as synthesizing, debating, creativity and analysis. This are the "true" skills that our students need in order to succeed in the world today. As teachers, I think we are so busy teaching to the test that there is often not enough time to teach and incorporate these skills into our lessons.



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