Standardized tests are a part of every student's life. Doing well on them requires more than knowledge. Preparation and follow-through are also important. Your middle grader can make the most of tests with these tips:
  • Encourage your child to strengthen her testing "muscles" at home with regular reading and writing practice. Examples: read every day; look up unfamiliar words in the dictionary while doing homework; keep a journal about important events. Making routines like these a habit will sharpen her skills and help her demonstrate what she knows at test time.
  • Help your child develop good test-taking skills. Advise her to read instructions, questions, and multiple choice answers carefully and to double check her work when she's finished. Studies have shown that the first answer a student chooses is usually the right one. Your child should only correct an answer if she's sure it's wrong. Being a smart test-taker will lessen her anxiety and improve her scores.
  • Go over test results together. If you don't understand what they mean, ask your middle grader's teacher for help. Let your child know that, while the scores aren't the only measure of school success, they can be useful in discovering her strengths and weaknesses.
Source: "Middle Years"‚(c) 2006 Resources for Educators, a division of Aspen Publishers, Inc.