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Friday, February 7, 2020

Standardized testing season is right around the corner, so today we offer a few suggestions to prepare your classroom for those intense and sometimes stressful days.

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"I don't believe in luck. I believe in preparation."

-Bobby Knight

 

'Tis the season for testing!

The annual testing season is almost upon us. Whether you are a fan of assessment or opposed to it, standardized testing is a reality for most of us. Today, we offer 3 strategies to begin using in anticipation of testing season.
  • Create and foster a culture of positivity. A balance between being relaxed and serious about test-taking can be hard to strike, but it is important to strive for well before the day of testing. Using language throughout the year like, "I want you to try your hardest," rather than "You need to do well on this test," will not only align with a growth mindset, but will also show your students that you believe in their efforts.
  • Introduce relaxation techniques to use all year. Some teachers find that yoga exercises are helpful in maintaining a calm classroom, while others introduce students to mindfulness. The important thing is to introduce and practice what works best in your classroom, so that on the day of testing bringing out the yoga moves doesn't throw students off during breaks.
  • Practice time management on tests. One of the biggest complaints from students and parents is the fact that there are time limits on most standardized tests. In an effort to avoid blindsiding students on the day of testing, prioritize time management training and practice throughout the school year across various subjects. Your students will be less likely to crash on the day that they need to truly adhere to those time limits.  
     
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Relaxation Checklist
 
When thinking about all that goes into preparing our students for standardized tests, we often keep coming back to trying to ensure that we're keeping the stress and anxiety out of the equation. Spending time on teaching relaxation techniques is helpful all the time, not just during testing season. We offer an article with tips to help you create something like a relaxation checklist for you and your students.  After all, when we prepare for the stress, we're able to manage it that much better. 
 

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