My second teaching prep test is coming up on Saturday and the amount of information I have to know is so vast. It's not that it's that complicated (except science; I don't understand you, molecules! And I never will.) It's just that there is SO MUCH information to review and relearn and retain. I am heartened that teachers have to pass these tests. I want the people instructing our future leaders to know how to convert miles to kilometers and what the Reformation was, even if it's not in their subject area. But it's just a tremendous amount of information. There is no study guide printed for this exam (neat, huh?) but my school recommended at least three months of preparation because there is just no way to cram for this one. I second that emotion.
The test is four hours long, and from what I read online, it's the one teaching prep test that people usually don't finish in the time allotted. That stresses me out. The hardest part for me is not that it covers so many subjects - seven - or that the subjects are so wide that each one really includes several subjects ("social science" includes history, economics, civics and government, geography, state history, sociology, and scientific research.) The hardest part is that for every tested subject there is an essay section on the test. With multiple essay questions. That is bad news in LSLville. I can try to narrow down which of the national parties came second chronologically between the Republican, Whig, Federalist, and Democratic, but I have a hell of a time naming the four major geological eras and discussing characteristics of the plant and animal life forms of each era. Know what I mean? Multiple choice: good. Essay: bad. Times seven subjects.
I am very sleep deprived; I've been studying until 2:30 or 3:00 every morning. And I do feel like I'm starting to crack a little - the stress is building in my mind and in my body. But mostly I am loving what I'm learning and really enjoying the chance to spend 14 hours a day (day after day after day) learning it. What a luxury! When I read the material I think of how awesome it would be to teach it to little inquiring minds, and then I get so excited for school. But one step at a time. First I need to pass this test.
P.S. I know their minds won't be inquiring. :)