Have you ever felt like you were missing something when you tried planning your homeschool around learning styles and multiple intelligences? Have you ever chosen curriculum because it was visual and engaged your child’s visual-spatial and nature intelligences? And then, when he still struggled to do the work, you got frustrated? I have. This has happened to me waaaaay too often. I can’t tell you how many incomplete books I have. Or, has this happened to you? Your teen completes an online interest inventory for students as they prepare for college and then, your teen completely changes gears when she gets there. Arrgh. This can mean lost credits and more importantly, money. This goes beyond college readiness skills. These skills are definitely necessary, and my college bound teens completed them. But, I have been very frustrated by the waste of resources, even though I talk with my kids, have them take little quizzes, and respect how God made them. Until now, I have had to just put up with it. Recently, this issue resurfaced with my youngest son. So, when I got my hands on the new TruSpark assessment and curriculum, I knew I had to try it.
The TruSpark assessment and curriculum is not a true-false or “choose which one describes you” multiple choice test. While my kids love quizzes, they generally see them as a fun diversion, not as a real test. This was different because this online interest inventory for students uses stories from their lives to assess what motivates them. It is important that students had an active role in the stories they share. It is also important that they get specific with their stories. These things make the assessment more accurate. Then, students are asked questions about how they felt in their stories and why they chose those particular events in their lives. After all, moments that hold the most meaning and make us feel most alive reveal a lot about what drives us. Some people are driven by teaching and helping, others by meeting challenges and completing projects, and there are dozens of other driving factors.
Addresses Core Motivations
One of the unique benefits of this research-based career assessment tool for teens is that it gets to the core motivations. In other words, it tells them why they do what they do and they learn more about how God made them. So, after my son completed his test, I asked him, “What do think? Do you think the results are accurate to what drives you?” He said, “Yes, mostly.” He liked that it didn’t take him long to do the test, either. Just for fun, I took it, too. I felt it was pretty accurate, but I will emphasize that the accuracy of your results will depend greatly on the life stories your teen (or you) chooses. To get the most out of the test, I highly recommend using both the assessment and the curriculum.
TruSpark includes an interactive curriculum. The curriculum is important because it helps teens learn about core motivations and what those are. By completing the first two lessons before taking the test, teens can identify their best life stories. And, after taking the test, the curriculum helps teens learn how to use and practice their newly identified core motivations in their everyday lives. More importantly, it encourages them to express their core motivations and not hide them or compare them to others. After all, this is how God made your teen! Lastly, teens learn how to use their core motivations in exploring careers. I found it to be a fun, interactive experience for my teens.
Based On This Online Interest Inventory for Students, It’s Time to Make Some Changes!
Remember, I said at the beginning that I had encountered some issues with my youngest son? Well, after completing this online interest inventory for students from TruSpark, I learned a bit about why I was having issues. Since he said it was pretty accurate, I used that information to help me uncover answers. What I found was that he wasn’t doing his work because he lacked motivation. From the assessment, I discovered that there was a mismatch between the way the work was presented and his core motivations. So, I discussed his results with him and we talked about changes we could make that might help him succeed.
This copyrighted content has been republished with written permission from Julie Polanco.