I’ve mentioned on the boards a few times that I’m going back to school in January to become a teacher. Well, the state of Virginia, like many states, requires a test called the Praxis for prospective teachers. On Saturday, I took the Praxis I which is the pre-program testing for the University certification program I plan to attend.
There are three parts - a reading section, a math section, and a writing section. The reading is just as it sounds - basically a reading comprehension test. The math is basically rudimentary math skills - something that should be fairly easy, but of course, I haven’t done since I was in middle and elementary school - fractions, percentages, probability, weights and measures, medians, modes, etc. And the writing is partly a test of grammar and partly an essay.
I spent some time studying last week and brushing up on everything. Reading and writing I had no qualms about as I’ve spent the last five years of my life as a semi-professional playwright and screenwriter. However, the math had me completely freaked. My poor boyfriend came to stay the weekend with me and I made him sit down with me for a half hour on Friday night to quiz me in math.
I went in for the test Saturday bright and early. It’s a computer-based test, timed, but you can basically work at your own pace. I decided to take the math first since I was fresh, and to get it out of the way. I finished that in under an hour (time limit was an hour and fifteen minutes), then moved onto the reading. Again, I finished that in under and hour and took the writing. That involved multiple choice questions, but also the essay - so I wrote my essay. My former English teachers would have been proud. I stated my position, backed it up with examples, and gave a damn good conclusion.
Because it was a computer-based test, I was able to decide once I’d finished the test if I wanted to submit my scores to my school of choice. I was feeling good about my math, so I decided to submit it. After I did, the computer showed me my score. The highest score one can get on this test is 190. My score popped up and I got a 185! I got my score on the reading, and it was 186! I have yet to get my writing score, but I’m feeling fairly positive about that as well (although the girls who were proctering exams for people told me that I could pretty much fail the writing and still get the cumulative score that I needed for my program).
So, I was feeling pretty good today. This is a weight lifted off of my shoulders - I’ve scored well above the requirement for my program and will be able to start classes in January. And by December of 2004, I should be a full-fledged teacher:). A little far from what I once saw myself doing (writing for soap operas and living the high life in NYC;) - I’m still writing, though, and working on getting a series of childrens’ books published.), but I’m becoming more and more excited about it - I think this may be the path I was always supposed to take. It just took me awhile to find it.