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How do you prepare students for state test?

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How do you prepare students for state test?
Old 03-18-2008, 03:03 PM
 
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I am a first year teacher and teach both 7th grade reading/writing and 8th grade science. Our state testing is in a few short weeks and I was wondering how some of you review with your students. I don't want to swamp them with a lot of review work but they do need to be prepared. What do you do?


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Old 03-19-2008, 07:03 AM
 
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Not sure what state you are from, but does your school have any practice books that are geared to state testing? I know we do, but most of our stuff is now outdated, so we are getting some new stuff this year. Also, make sure you review the key comprehension strategies and focus on the types of genre on the test. We know that most of our tests reading selections are nonfiction so I will be putting emphasis on that between now and testing time.
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Old 03-20-2008, 02:36 PM
 
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I think I can help. The classes I teach that get tested are 6th grade reading and 7th grade science.

In reading, our school has test prep books. I spend about 30 minutes a day, two to three days a week on the test prep book. My goal in this is to review concepts that were covered at the start of this year or in previous grades. I also am getting them used to the test format by giving a sample test and by reviewing test taking strategies. Our reading test has a writing component, but we have been reviewing that for a couple of months. I have also told the students about any websites I find that offer review for reading tests. Our state has a sample test that students can take on-line. Lastly, get your students to practice reading. I start my students at 20 to 30 minutes of free reading a night (unrelated to homework). By the time the tests come, they should be up to 45 to 50 minutes. The tests involve a lot of reading and they need to build up endurance.

In science. I spend two class periods a week using the test prep book. We teach Earth Science to our 7th graders, so mostly I am reviewing the other science topics that they cover in other grades (life science, physical science, etc). Again, I am giving a sample test to prepare them for the format.

Finally, if you are going to need to change your seating chart for the tests (i.e. students can't sit in groups or whatnot) then, if possible, I would do so now. The students will get used to the room arrangement and will be more comfortable come test time.

As you said, we don't want to swamp them. Most of the prep you do is in your everyday teaching. These are just some small things you can do to help them be prepared.

Good luck!!!
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strategies
Old 03-21-2008, 04:28 AM
 
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It is important to do some prep with the testing booklets and talk about test taking strategies.

In reading I have the students do sidewriting--writing a word or phrase next to each paragraph to remind them of what the paragraph is about. I also have them highlight the 3 sentences around any vocab word to remind them to look at all their context clues.

When doing the questions, talk about the purpose of elimination. Often they'll get stuck on an unknown word and shut down. Walk them through skipping an answer they're unsure of and eliminating the ones they know are wrong. Read and reread.

They have taken these tests before and do know the basics. A yearly review is always important though.
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Great Sites
Old 03-26-2008, 04:39 PM
 
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I stumbled across these Site and LOVE it. Check it out. I did it with my class as a whole group review. The best part is that it gives the students a grade at the end of the practice. As you know, it is sooo hard to get grades when reviewing for and giving the State TESTS.



http://www.iq.poquoson.org/index.html


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study island
Old 05-31-2008, 08:42 AM
 
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I've heard that study island is a great test prep site as well and gives you a score at the end too, check it out!
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