Test Your Dog not Your Kid
Testing is a hot topic among local parents today. Some accept it as a necessary evil, some tell me they appreciate the rigor (finding public school curriculum too watered-down), others enjoy the chance to find out how their child stacks up.
As you can tell from my posts so far, I'm not a big fan of high-stakes testing; I think it detracts from real learning. (And I can't wait to read Vicki Abeles' new book Beyond Measure.) My own position is a bit murky, I guess, (like Jerry Mander owning a television?) as for the past several years I've worked with my father on evaluating education programs at local city schools, hoping to find significant impact in a field—arts and music—that's notoriously difficult to measure. Although the students themselves never find out the results of these tests, so perhaps I can deflect charges of hypocrisy. For fun, I've written these little books of tests for dogs (and they've so far, bizarrely, been my best platform for ranting against one-size-fits-all assessments). The "tests" are meant to be entertaining, and hopefully provide an afternoon or two of mental and physical stimulation for willing canine subjects. Here's the jacket for the upcoming U.S. Edition of the second book in the "series." It has already been released in paperback in the UK. The super-talented Chuck Gonzalez did the illustrations.
Here are three jackets from the first book. Which one do you like best?