Nov 23, 2009

Examinations for Fall Term 09

We are ending our school term with Mason-style exams. I have never done this before, and I really had no idea how it would go. Today, we did Bible and Geography, because we have basically finished those subjects, at least enough for them to answer the questions I had written. I started with Kaytie and she did very well. For their narrations, I typed as they talked and just put down exactly what they said. I did not correct even the most glaring of errors.

Exam questions for term one: Kaytie


Retell in your own words the story of Joseph.

Joseph had a father that really liked him. And one day, I think it was on his birthday, his father gave him a coat of many colors. And after he gave him the coat, he said, “Your brothers have been out with the sheep a long time. Go see if they are ok.” And when his brothers saw him coming, he, they said, “Look, here comes the dreamer. And let’s get rid of him.” So when Joseph came up, they grabbed him and threw him in a pit. They took off Joseph’s coat. Then a camel train came by. It was traders and his brothers sold Joseph to the traders. “Not only were they getting rid of him,” they said. “We are also getting money.” And they tore off bits of Joseph’s coat and they dipped it in one of the sheep's blood. Rueben, who loved Joseph, too, was planning to rescue him, later, until they selled him while Rueben was off checking the sheep. And when he came back, and found out what happened, he was sad, but it was too late now. The traders took him to Egypt where he could interpret dreams with God’s power. He interpreted the baker and the cupbearer’s dreams. The baker’s meant that he was going to die and not get his job back. But the cupbearer’s meant that he would get his job back. And then he interpreted the king’s dream. Which meant 7 years of famine and 7 years of plenty. And he, Pharaoh, who was actually the king, put him in third command. And one day, on the 7 years of famine, the brothers of Joseph went to him and asked for food and he said, "You are spies." But and his brothers did not recognize him, but Joseph recognized his brothers. He said, "All of you should go in jail but one of you should go and get your smallest, your uh, little brother, and come back. If you don’t, then you are truly spies." And Simeon was the one who went and he asked his father, if he could go back with Benjamin. That’s all I remember.

Recite Psalm 148

She knew the first 3 verses, but then kind of grabbed phrases here and there.

Answer catechism questions

She did this perfectly!

Find three countries that we have studied on the map, and tell me three facts about each country.

She had no problems showing me three countries in our atlas.

United States:

1 The flag has red stripes, white stars and a blue square that the stars are on.

2 The bald eagle is the symbol.

3 There is very many houses, and most people aren’t very poor.


1 The kids play soccer, but instead of calling it soccer, they call it futbol.

2 The capital is Mexico City.

3 The flag is green, white and red. There is an eagle that caught a fish.


1 They grow Brazil nut trees.

2 They grow oranges.

3 Its capital is Brazilia.

From the list of countries that we have studied, tell which goes on which continent.

She got them all easily except for Argentina. But she remembered it when she saw it on a map.

Tell me your favorite country and why?

The United States because it is a free country.

Exam questions for term one: Nate

Retell in your own words the story of Joseph.

(This was difficult. I had to ask a lot of, "What happened then?" And at one point (right after the first sentence) I had to get very explicit: This can be a fight, which you will lose, or you can answer the question pleasantly and tell me what you remember, because I know you remember something.)

He got a new coat. His brothers didn’t like his dreams. His brothers threw him in a pit. And when his father found out, he cried. They gave him to some people going to Egypt. Potiphar threw him in jail. He helped two other people by explaining their dreams. The dreams were… the first one was the cupbearer was balancing three baskets on his head and birds were eating off the first one. It meant that Potiphar was going to stick a pole through him. The other guy got out of jail. Joseph helped Pharaoh, explained his dreams. His dreams meant that there was going to be seven years of food and seven years of bad food. Pharaoh let him out of jail. Joseph had a party because he got out of jail. He told them to collect one fourth of grain.

Recite Psalm 148

He said the first verse, then grabbed a few phrases.

Answer catechism questions

He mixed two up, but got the others perfectly.

Find three countries that we have studied on the map, and tell me one fact about each country.

He found them all easily.

United States

The flag has stars and stripes.


They eat popovers.


They grow brazil nuts.

From the list of countries that we have studied, tell which goes on which continent.

He did this perfectly and much faster than Kaytie.

Tell me your favorite country and why?

Argentina because of how they talk.

From this exercise, I drew the following conclusions.

1. Five years old is a little young for narrations: especially for boys.

2. We need to spend a lot more time on our Scripture memory. I think next term we will say the entire passage every time instead of trying to work on one verse a week.

3. Kids have really good memories! And this method is kind of fun for everybody but five-year-old boys!


Jeanne said...

These are wonderful narrations! I especially like to see the proper nouns - even from Master 5! It is a great effort from both of them.

I would second the idea of learning passages in a chunk rather that verse by verse. We simple read the verse through each day until it is learned. Sometimes Jemimah joins in with a verse or two; at other times she learns a word or two per verse. By the end of a few weeks she can recite a whole chapter!

Can't wait to read more!

Spesamor Academy said...

Thank you! I was hoping you would comment and say nice things. :)
Getting your input was the main reason I posted this!


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