We always want to be prepared for all things in our classroom, but one thing that is sometimes challenging but essential is being prepared for State Testing. Today, I am hopeful that I can provide a few test prep strategies for elementary students and ideas to inspire you. If your students are getting ready to take the state tests, you may be wondering what you can do to help them prepare. Luckily, there are a number of things you can do. Test prep is important for students of all ages and learning levels.
There is more that goes into test prep than just the material itself. For example, many students get nervous about tests or have a difficult time concentrating. Over the past 15 years, I have been in testing grade levels. I believe that bombarding students with practice tests is NOT fun for the teacher or the students. Therefore, as a teacher we want to focus on growing our students and not overwhelming them. If you have been teaching the curriculum all year and working to grow your students, you have been preparing them. However, it is natural to feel the need to prepare, as we do for anything in life.
Here are some test prep strategies for your students:
- Spend time doing daily reviews: Preparing for exams can be overwhelming, especially for children in younger grades. Rather than dumping all of the practice tests on them at once, it’s important to spend time reviewing one area each day. Here are some tools that can help your students: Click here to preview.
- Focus on trouble areas: Are you finding that more of your students are struggling with math? If so, you will want to focus on this a little bit more during your test prep.
- Teach kids test taking strategies: Give them tips on what to do when they feel unsure of an answer, such as making their most educated guess and moving onto the next question. I developed some strategies that help my students. Seeing these displayed is often a simple reminder for them. Click Here
- Focus on the positives: Remind the students how far they have come this year. Have them write out all the things they are proud of knowing and learning. Get students to create motivational quotes to motivate each other. I use these Growth Mindset Posters and let them create their motivational posters, they enjoy this.
- Ask for help from parents: Let them know when you will be doing your state test preparation and ask them to make sure that their child is well-rested and eats a well-balanced breakfast. You will want to do the same thing during the week of state testing. Parents appreciate these tips. Click here for a freebie I send home to parents.
Test Prep Strategies and Resources I love to Use:
- Test Prep Bundle: Includes Test Stems Questions to use with any text. 2 sets of Mentor Reading Texts with higher level thinking questions, Reading Graphic Organizers.
- Reading Test Prep Comprehension Passages: I create many sets including monthly sets with fiction, nonfiction and poetry to use for weekly assessments or other activities.
- Writing Test Prep Activities: I have many resources to test and prep students for Writing Testing. Lots of prompts providing different practice guides.
- Motivational Awards: It is also important to motivate and encourage our students, so these are positive for testing prep season!
You will find this FREE Testing Prep Parent Letter in our resource library! I send home to parents just to remind parents of test taking information and helpful reminders.
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