Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Tuesday Teacher Tips - May 7- Tips for test anxiety, inference, summarizing and theme

Click on underlined text to see links. 

Stressing over the test?

From Flickr - Fort Worth Squatch

Do your students have a lot of test anxiety when it comes to end of course or high stakes standardized tests? Helping students remember that they are prepared and of course creating a positive environment can go a long way in relieving anxiety and encouraging student success.

Selina at Classroom Magic reads her students the story Testing Miss Malarkey by Judy Finchler Kevin O’Malley and discusses test anxiety with them (we currently don’t have this book, but it is in at the Newport branch of the public library). Then she uses the mnemonic SWEET (Stay positive, Work hard, Examine the questions, Eliminate wrong answers, and Take all the time given) to help her students remember they are prepared.

Another  mnemonic “Thank Goodness I Can Read Better” comes from Scholastic’s “Prepare Students for Standardized Tests” page and uses the first letter of each word (T = take your time, G= go back to the story to find answers, I = italics are important, C= check your work, R= read all the choices, B= bubble correctly).

Sheet bubbling can be a challenge for many young students.  Consider using The Bubble Test Form Generator from Catpin Productions, and have students practice filling in bubbles ahead of time, so you can give them feedback.

Do you have kids who need a little extra help with test anxiety?  It might help to share with them “When Tests Make You Nervous” a KidsHealth article that explains what test anxiety is and gives some practical ways to help alleviate it.


Hooray for Diffendoofer Day!
Celebrate all the things your class has learned (and all the teachers who have helped along the way) with Dr. Seuss Hooray for Diffendoofer Day!
Even the students at Diffendoofer get nervous when it’s time to test, but Mrs. Bonkers says it best: “’Don’t fret!‘She said ‘You’ve learned the things you need to pass the that test and many more– I’m certain you’ll succeed!”’.
Need some teaching idea for the book?  Check out the Seussville guide for some ideas.
Three ELA Quickies – Inference, Summarizing & Theme
Inferences—check out this blog post “Feasting on Inferences” from a Year of Many “Firsts”.  If you scroll down the page, there is an example of a graphic organizer that you can get for free that will help students organize “What I already Know + Words from the Text = What I Infer”.
Summarizing—Summarize story elements with the “Somebody Wanted But So” strategy.  Check it out at Educational Communications Board
Theme—use movie clips to introduce universal themes.  You can search by theme at movieclip.com—as a warning though, not all clips may be school appropriate so preview them before using with your class.



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