Sunday, July 18, 2010

Putting in time

I was visiting my 94 year old grandfather the other day when I asked him if he had to do multiple choice exams in school. He said that he didn't, and that he was only kind of familiar with what they were.

I took some time and explained the basic idea of a multiple choice quesiton.

After a moment of thought, he turned to me and said, "Sounds kinda like just put'n in time."

I laughed out loud - it was funny because it was so true! I couldn't summarize the whole idea of multiple choice exams any better.

It was pretty neat to have my 94 year old grandfather make me laugh like that. Where his body is failing him, his mind is, at times, as sharp as ever.

Thanks Grandpa!


  1. It would be interesting to know when Multi-guess test were introducted in education.

    I wonder if they came in around the same time as automated marking became possible. I would guess that their introduction did not occur in a context of 'is this good for teaching and learning?'


    Great Blog Joe, I only stumbled across it a week or so ago, but love your thinking.


    Peter (@kent3ed)

  2. too bad I cannot edit the grammar, something to remember for next time.


  3. How ironic that multiple choice tests began to be used with mass populations when the military in the United States needed to process new soldiers for World War I and decide where they should be assigned...
    Joe, can I come and teach at your school in Canada? I teach reading and writing...workshop style.


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