Justplainbill's Weblog

May 21, 2015

1895 8th Grade Final Exam, Salina KS [I failed. :-)]

Filed under: Education, equalizers, Historical context, Humor, Media Check, Political Commentary — justplainbill @ 2:21 pm

This is the
> eighth-grade final exam from 1895 in Salina, Kansas, USA. It
> was taken from
> the original document on file at the Smokey Valley
> Genealogical Society and Library in Salina, and reprinted by
> the Salina Journal.
>
>
>
>
>
>
>
> 8th Grade Final Exam:
> Salina, Kansas – 1895
>
>
>
>
>
>
>
>
>
> Grammar
> (Time, one hour)
>
>
> 1. Give nine rules for the use of capital letters.
>
>
> 2. Name the parts of speech and define those that have no
> modifications.
>
>
> 3. Define verse, stanza and paragraph
>
>
> 4. What are the principal parts of a verb? Give principal
> parts of ‘lie, ‘play,’ and ‘run.’
>
>
> 5. Define case; illustrate each case.
>
>
> 6. What is punctuation? Give rules for principal marks of
> punctuation.
>
>
> 7 – 10. Write a composition of about 150 words and show
> therein that you understand the practical use of the rules
> of grammar.
>
>
>
>
>
>
>
> Arithmetic (Time, 1
> hour 15 minutes)
>
>
> 1. Name and define the Fundamental Rules of Arithmetic.
>
>
> 2. A wagon box is 2 ft. deep, 10 feet long, and 3 ft. wide.
> How many bushels of wheat will it hold?
>
>
> 3. If a load of wheat weighs 3,942 lbs., what is it worth at
> 50cts/bushel, deducting 1,050 lbs. For tare?
>
>
> 4. District No 33 has a valuation of $35,000.. What is the
> necessary levy to carry on a
> school seven months at $50 per month, and have $104 for
> incidentals?
>
>
> 5. Find the cost of 6,720 lbs. Coal at $6.00 per ton.
>
>
> 6. Find the interest of $512.60 for 8 months and 18 days at
> 7 percent.
>
>
> 7. What is the cost of 40 boards 12 inches wide and 16 ft.
> long at $20 per meter?
>
>
> 8. Find bank discount on $300 for 90 days (no grace) at 10
> percent.
>
>
> 9. What is the cost of a square farm at $15 per acre, the
> distance of which is 640 rods?
>
>
> 10. Write a Bank Check, a Promissory Note, and a
> Receipt.
>
>
>
>
>
>
>
> U.S. History (Time,
> 45 minutes)
>
>
> 1. Give the epochs into which U.S. History is divided.
>
>
> 2. Give an account of the discovery of America by Columbus
> .
>
>
> 3. Relate the
> causes and results of the Revolutionary War.
>
>
> 4. Show the territorial growth of the United States.
>
>
> 5. Tell what you can of the history of Kansas.6. Describe
> three of the most prominent battles of the Rebellion.
>
>
> 7. Who were the following: Morse, Whitney, Fulton, Bell,
> Lincoln, Penn, and Howe?
>
>
> 8. Name events connected with the following dates: 1607,
> 1620, 1800, 1849, 1865.
>
>
>
>
>
>
>
> Orthography (Time,
> one hour)
>
>
> [Do we even know what this topic is?]
>
>
> 1. What is meant by the following: alphabet, phonetic,
> orthography, etymology, syllabication.
>
>
> 2. What are elementary sounds? How classified?
>
>
> 3. What are the following, and give examples of each:
> trigraph, subvocals,
> diphthong, cognate letters, linguals.
>
>
> 4. Give four substitutes for caret ‘u.'(HUH?)
>
>
> 5. Give two rules for spelling words with final ‘e.’
> Name two exceptions under each rule.
>
>
> 6. Give two uses of silent letters in spelling. Illustrate
> each.
>
>
> 7. Define the following prefixes and use in connection with
> a word: bi, dis-mis, pre, semi, post, non, inter, mono,
> sup.
>
>
> 8. Mark diacritically and divide into syllables the
> following, and name the sign that indicates the sound: card,
> ball, mercy, sir, odd, cell, rise, blood, fare, last.
>
>
> 9. Use the following correctly in sentences: cite, site,
> sight, fane, fain, feign, vane, vain, vein, raze, raise,
> rays.
>
>
> 10. Write 10 words frequently mispronounced and indicate
> pronunciation by use of diacritical marks and by
> syllabication.
>
>
>
>
>
>
>
> Geography (Time, one
> hour)
>
>
> 1 What is climate? Upon what does climate depend?
>
>
> 2. How do you account for the extremes of climate in
> Kansas?
>
>
> 3. Of what use are rivers? Of what use is the ocean?
>
>
> 4. Describe the mountains of North America.
>
>
> 5. Name and describe the following: Monrovia, Odessa,
> Denver, Manitoba, Hecla, Yukon, St. Helena, Juan Fernandez,
> Aspinwall and Orinoco.
>
>
> 6. Name and locate the principal trade centers of the U.S.
> Name all the republics of Europe and give the capital of
> each.
>
>
> 8. Why is the Atlantic Coast colder than the Pacific in the
> same latitude?
>
>
> 9. Describe the process by which the water of the ocean
> returns to the sources of rivers.
>
>
> 10. Describe the movements of the earth. Give the
> inclination of the earth.
>
>
>
>
>
>
>
> Notice that the exam
> took FIVE HOURS to complete.
>
>
>
>
>
>
>
> Gives the statement
> “he only had an 8th grade education” a whole new
> meaning, doesn’t it?
>
>
> No wonder they dropped out after 8th grade. They already
> knew more than they needed to know!
>
>
> No, I don’t have the answers! And I don’t think I
> ever did!
>
>
> Have fun with this … pass it on so we’re not the only
> ones who feel stupid!

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2 Comments »

  1. Dear Bill, on reading the 8th grade test, my first reaction was to forward it to our provincial politicians‚Äč in the hope that they would recognize that our 21st century educational system has been seriously degraded in the past century. I then realized that our 21st century politicians would not themselves be able to answer the questions posed on this public school test paper. They would not themselves recognize that there are serious problems with the curricula that have evolved – particularly since about 1940. Up to that time, children learned to read with story books written with full sentences (in Canada, we learned to read with “The Mary, John and Peter” reader). After that time, children were taught with booklets using short chopped sentences: “See Spot. See Spot Run.” It has been down hill ever since.

    Regards, Gerry Porter, Ottawa

    Comment by JGPorter — May 21, 2015 @ 3:18 pm

    • Have you seen the ‘core curriculum (sic)’ that The Gates’ Foundation and the U.S. Dept. of Education are now pushing? As far as I can tell, its only purpose is to force everyone to buy pc’s, which means a forced upgrade every three years, and MicroSoft products.

      Thanks for the comment.

      Comment by justplainbill — May 21, 2015 @ 4:53 pm


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