Determining the Need for Year-End Assessments
Print E-mail
As a homeschooling parent, should you use a yearly standardized test? Some states require testing. Mine does not. The longer I homeschool, the more I value a standardized assessment like the IOWA™. Here are six reasons I believe standardized assessments are a great value:

Number 1: I worry less at night about how my children are doing academically. Let’s face it—homeschooling is a huge responsibility. A test that shows me where my child performs among national averages eases my mind and allows me to focus on something more productive than worry.

Number 2: My children need to believe they’re getting a quality education. They are very interested in knowing their strengths and weaknesses as compared to their peers. This is a great thing! It shows their interest in education and their desire to improve. If you provide your children with an outstanding education, but they perceive their education as lacking, they may also lack confidence to pursue their God-given calling.

Number 3: Something might not be working. A few years ago, before I started homeschooling with BJU Press, I tried a popular math curriculum with a struggling math student. She loved it and I loved that she was making all A’s. When her tests came back with only three months’ grade equivalent growth in a year, I researched curriculum and found a better one. When we’re doing the teaching, it’s easy for us to assume that because we covered it, our children mastered it. That’s not always the case.

Number 4: Time is limited. Even though we would love to give our children a thorough education in every core subject plus art, music, and sports, there is only so much time in our day. Information gathered from tests shows us where we DON’T want to cut corners to save time. It also shows us where we should spend money first if the budget is tight. Perhaps a video teacher could supplement your instruction in weaker areas.

Number 5: Sometimes circumstances change. While we intend to homeschool our children through high school graduation, circumstances may dictate that we change our educational method, move from our current state, or verify our children’s education in order to comply with applicable laws. Yearly testing (preferably with the same test) is especially important for students who may be below grade level because these tests can reveal growth (or lack thereof).

Number 6: It is relatively inexpensive. The most expensive part will be paying your tester, but many parents qualify to become testers themselves. $29 gets a qualified tester access to an IOWA™ test for one student Grades 3-12. Your homeschool group may even plan to take this test together. Group testing greatly reduces the expense of paying a qualified tester, and you may even get a small discount on the fee for access to the materials.

What about you? Can you add to this list?

By Cynda Moore
HomeWorks Consultant and Homeschool Mom
HomeWorks by Precept Consultant, Cynda Moore, KY


Facebook Group

Connect with HomeWorks Consultants and other homeschool moms to discuss BJU Press Homeschool materials in our Facebook Group, BJU Press Homeschool Community!

Visit Group

Consultant Spotlight


Esther Black

Esther Black is a second-generation homeschooler, wife, mom of 7, and HomeWorks by Precept Consultant from Iowa. Her goal is to encourage and support other homeschooling families to find the tools they need to continue investing in their children. ...
Continue Reading

Carla Heslop

As a homeschooling momma of 7, I’m familiar with the fear of ruining your children for life. I’ve even tossed around the idea of pushing my kids on the school bus and throwing in that towel! I desperately didn’t want to, and I just didn’t know what else to do! I was drowning. I needed homeschool help, and I just didn’t know where to find it...
Continue Reading

Beth Milligan

My name is Beth Milligan. I live in a beautiful part of North Idaho surrounded by glistening lakes and rugged forests. We live in a rural area where fishing and hiking are within minutes and where a moose may pay a visit on our back porch. In the summers, you will find our family of 5 playing a fun round of ...
Continue Reading

Natalie Smith

Natalie Smith lives in Fayetteville, NC – the home of Fort Bragg 82nd Airborne and US Army Special Operations. She graduated from Bob Jones University with a Bachelor of Arts in Biblical Counseling and a Master of Arts in Teaching in Elementary Education. Natalie met her husband, Germaine, at Bob Jones University working in the University Cleaners. They have been married for 13 years. The Lord has blessed them with two girls. ...
Continue Reading

Sharon Huizinga

Sharon Huizinga lives in Michigan with Tom, her husband of 13 years, and their four children. They both grew up in Connecticut, met at church, and got to know each other better in college at Western Connecticut State University. Sharon graduated with her bachelor’s degree just a few weeks before she and Tom married in 2006. She went on to teach second, fourth and fifth grades in Christian schools. ...
Continue Reading
tab 1
tab 2
tab 3
tab 4
tab 5

Contact Us Today

HomeWorks By Precept exists to provide you with the best educational resources to help your child become a creative, adaptive thinker with a strong biblical worldview. Our relationship doesn’t end with the once-a-year curriculum purchase—HomeWorks By Precept is here to partner with you all year long.
Find A Local Consultant