1. Giving The Number Of Fingers. Procedure

"How many fingers have you on one hand?" "How many on the other hand?" "How many on both hands together?" If the child begins to count in response to any of the questions, say: "No, don't count. Tell me without counting." Then repeat the question.


Passed if all three questions are answered correctly and promptly without the necessity of counting. Some subjects do not understand the question to include the thumbs. We disregard this if the number of fingers exclusive of thumbs is given correctly.

2. Description Of Pictures. Procedure

Use the same pictures as in III, 3, presenting them always in the following order: Dutch Home, River Scene, Post-Office. The formula for the test in this year is somewhat different from that of year III. Say: "What is this picture about? What is this a picture of?" Use the double question, and follow the formula exactly. It would ruin the test to say: "Tell me everything you see in this picture," for this form of question tends to provoke the enumeration response even with intelligent children of this age.

When there is no response, the question may be repeated as often as is necessary to break the silence.


The test is passed if two of the three pictures are described or interpreted. Interpretation, however, is seldom encountered at this age. Often the response consists of a mixture of enumeration and description. The rule is that the reaction to a picture should not be scored plus unless it is made up chiefly of description (or interpretation).

Picture (a). Satisfactory responses: - "The little girl is crying. The mother is looking at her and there is a little kitten on the floor."

"The mother is watching the baby, and the cat is looking at a hole in the floor, and there is a lamp and a table so I guess it's a dining room."

Picture (b). Satisfactory responses: - "Some people in a boat. The water is high and if they don't look out the boat will tip over."

"Some Indians and a lady and man. They are in a boat on the river and the boat is about to upset, and there are some dead trees going to fall."

Picture (c). Satisfactory responses: - "A man selling eggs and two men reading the paper together and two men watching."

"A few men reading a newspaper and one has a basket of eggs and this one has been fishing."

Unsatisfactory responses are those made up entirely or mainly of enumeration. A phrase or two of description intermingled with a larger amount of enumeration counts minus. Sometimes the description is satisfactory as far as it goes, but is exceedingly brief. In such cases a little tactful urging ("Go ahead," etc.) will extend the response sufficiently to reveal its true character.

3. Repeating Five Digits. Procedure

Use: 3-1-7-5-9; 4-2-3-8-5; 9-8-1-7-6. Tell the child to listen and to say after you just what you say. Then read the first series of digits at a slightly faster rate than one per second, in a distinct voice, and with perfectly uniform emphasis. Avoid rhythm.

In previous tests with digits, it was permissible to reread the first series if the child refused to respond. In this year, and in the digits tests of later years, this is not permissible. Warning is not given as to the number of digits to be repeated. Before reading each series, get the child's attention. Do not stare at the child during the response, as this is disconcerting. Look aside or at the record sheet.


Passed if the child repeats correctly, after a single reading, one series out of the three series given. The order must be correct.

4. Tying A Bow-Knot. Procedure

Prepare a shoestring tied in a bow-knot around a stick. The knot should be an ordinary "double bow," with wings not over 3 or 4 inches long. Make this ready in advance of the experiment and show the child only the completed knot.

Place the model before the subject with the wings pointing to the right and left, and say: "You know what kind of knot this is, don't you? It is a bow-knot. I want you to take this other piece of string and tie the same kind of knot around my finger." At the same time give the child a piece of shoestring, of the same length as that which is tied around the stick, and hold out a finger pointed toward the child and in convenient position for the operation. It is better to have the subject tie the string around the examiner's finger than around a pencil or other object because the latter often falls out of the string and is otherwise awkward to handle.

Some children who assert that they do not know how to tie a bow-knot are sometimes nevertheless successful when urged to try. It is always necessary, therefore, to secure an actual trial.


The test is passed if a double bow-knot (both ends folded in) is made in not more than a minute. A single bow-knot (only one end folded in) counts half credit, because children are often accustomed to use the single bow altogether. The usual plain common knot, which precedes the bow-knot proper, must not be omitted if the response is to count as satisfactory, for without this preliminary plain knot a bow-knot will not hold and is of no value. To be satisfactory the knot should also be drawn up reasonably close, not left gaping.

5. Giving Differences From Memory. Procedure

Say: "What is the difference between a fly and a butterfly? "If the child does not seem to understand, say: "You know flies, do you not? You have seen flies? And you know the butterflies! Now, tell me the difference between a fly and a butterfly."1 Proceed in the same way with stone and egg, and wood and glass. A little coaxing is sometimes necessary to secure a response, but supplementary questions and suggestions of every kind are to be avoided. For example, it would not be permissible for the examiner' to say: "Which is larger, a fly or a butterfly? " This would give the child his cue and he would immediately answer, "A butterfly." The child must be left to find a difference by himself. Sometimes a difference is given, but without any indication as to its direction, as, for example, "One is bigger than the other " (for fly and butterfly). It is then permissible to ask: "Which is bigger? "


Passed if a real difference is given in two out of three comparisons. It is not necessary, however, that an essential difference be given; the difference may be trivial, only it must be a real one. The following are samples of satisfactory and unsatisfactory responses:

Fly and butterfly. Satisfactory: - "Butterfly is larger." "Butterfly has bigger wings." "Fly is black and a butterfly is not."

Unsatisfactory: - These are mostly misstatements of facts; as: "Fly is bigger." "Fly has legs and butterfly hasn't." "Butterfly has no feet and fly has." "Butterfly makes butter."

Stone and egg. Satisfactory: - "Stone is harder." "Egg is softer." "Egg breaks easier." "Egg breaks and stone doesn't." "Stone is heavier."

Unsatisfactory: - "A stone is bigger (or smaller) than an egg." "A stone is square and an egg is round." "An egg is yellow and a stone is white."

Wood and glass. Satisfactory: - "Glass breaks easier than wood." "Glass breaks and wood does not." "Wood is stronger than glass." "Glass you can see through and wood you can't."

Unsatisfactory: - "Wood is black and glass is white." (Color differences are always unsatisfactory in this comparison unless transparency is also mentioned.) "Glass is square and wood is round." "Glass is bigger than wood."

6. Copying A Diamond. Procedure

Place the model before the child with the longer diagonal pointing directly toward him, and giving him pen and ink and paper, say: "I want you to draw one exactly like this." Give three trials, saying each time: "Make it exactly like this one." In repeating the above formula, merely point to the model; do not pass the fingers around its edge.


The test is passed if two of the three drawings are at least as good as those marked satisfactory on the score card. The diamond should be drawn approximately in the correct position, and the diagonals must not be reversed. Disregard departures from the model with respect to size.

Alternative Test 1: Naming The Days Of The Week. Procedure

Say: "You know the days of the week, do you not? Name the days of the week for me." Sometimes the child begins by naming various annual holidays, as Christmas, Fourth of July, etc. Perhaps he has not comprehended the task; at any rate, we give him one more trial by stopping him and saying: "No; that is not what I mean. I want you to name the days of the week." No supplementary questions are permissible, and we must be careful not to show approval or disapproval in our looks as the child is giving his response.

If the days have been named in correct order, we check up the response to see whether the real order of days is known or whether the names have only been repeated mechanically. This is done by asking the following questions: "What day comes before Tuesday?" "What day comes before Thursday?" "What day comes before Friday? "


The test is passed if, within fifteen seconds, the days of the week are all named in correct order, and if the child succeeds in at least two of the three check questions. We disregard the point of beginning.

Alternative Test 2: Repeating Three Digits Reversed. Procedure

The digits used are: 2-8-3: 4-2-7; 5-9-6. The test should be given after, but not immediately after, the tests of repeating digits forwards.

Say to the child: "Listen carefully, I am going to read some numbers again, but this time I want you to say them backwards. For example, if I should say 1-2-3, you would say 3-2-1. Do you understand? " When it is evident that the child has grasped the instructions, say: "Ready now; listen carefully, and be sure to say the numbers backwards." Then read the series at the same rate and in the same manner as in the other digits tests. It is not permissible to re-read any of the series.

If the first series is repeated forwards instead of backwards, the instructions must be repeated. Before each series exhort the child to listen carefully and to be sure to repeat the numbers backwards.


The test is passed if one series out of three is repeated backwards without error.