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    #3546 - 09/22/07 05:27 AM What do you tell a child about that upcomming test
    Grinity Offline
    Member

    Registered: 12/13/05
    Posts: 7207
    Loc: Connecticut
    Hi Dear Ones,
    I know that many of us are testing soon, and I wonder how some of our more experienced parents brought up the subject of Educational Assesment, and what kinds of conversations we had about it.

    DS11 was 7 at his first test. Here's my fanticy of what I would have told him if I had known then what I know now! I did tell him that there were Definitly going to be some questions that were too hard - because the test was make for kids of all ages. Does he think that he can do high school stuff yet? He hasn't been taught so it's not his fault if he can't do it - but they have to ask, just to make sure, ok?

    Also, some of the tasks will be really boring and silly. Please try to do your best because some of what they are checking for is how you would do in a classroom when a teacher asks the class to do something silly or boring, because older kids are better at handling this without a tantum or fogging out than younger kids, so they want to see how mature you are. Of course teachers don't do this very often, but sometimes the tasks that seem silly or boring to you, are really really important to some other child, so you want to be fair, right?

    Smiles,
    Trinity
    _________________________
    Coaching available, at SchoolSuccessSolutions.com

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    #3547 - 09/22/07 08:38 AM Re: What do you tell a child about that upcomming test [Re: Grinity]
    acs Offline
    Member

    Registered: 03/05/07
    Posts: 797
    This is a great question. DS will be taking his first out of level test this year. It will be the ACT. He has been taking the state tests for NCLB for several years which do have many out of level questions. He has scored "advanced for 10th" in all areas on these since about 4th grade so I know is is smart (his are by far the highest scores for his grade in the district.) and I know he is good at tests. But I know the ACT questions will be harder and the BIG DEAL is that they are timed and our state questions are not. DS is very reflective and enjoys savoring the challenge of hard questions as well as getting a good chuckle over the decoy wrong answers. I can just see him thinking hard about the first reading passage or two and then forgetting to do the rest. So, first, how do I prepare him for a timed test?

    Second, DS is quite aware of what this is for. He wants to do one of the cool summer institutes and he wants a score that will get him into one that he wants to go to. He also knows the typical incoming freshman scores for the college next door. He is quite aware of score cut-offs for various things and has goals in mind. He wants to take practice tests and he wants to do really well.

    It would have been nice if his first out of level test was more of an innocent affair but its not. He LOVES tests and wants to do well. I know that studying for out of level tests misses the point and I don't plan to force him to study, but what if he wants to study for his own purposes, is that OK?

    Since this a something he has high hopes for and is excited about, how do keep it sane, especially if he does not do as well as he expects to do?

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    #3591 - 09/25/07 11:30 AM Re: What do you tell a child about that upcomming test [Re: acs]
    Grinity Offline
    Member

    Registered: 12/13/05
    Posts: 7207
    Loc: Connecticut
    Originally Posted By: acs
    So, first, how do I prepare him for a timed test?

    ...He wants to take practice tests and he wants to do really well.

    ...It would have been nice if his first out of level test was more of an innocent affair but its not.


    I think the practice test will tell you about how much to worry about the time factor. He may just see it as an aditional challenge. If not, Nintendo DS's Big Brian Academy is totally timed and totally sweet and fun.

    Too bad his first won't be more innocent, but still better than taking it "high stakes" at the usual age!

    Trinity
    _________________________
    Coaching available, at SchoolSuccessSolutions.com

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    #3605 - 09/25/07 04:36 PM Re: What do you tell a child about that upcomming test [Re: Grinity]
    Kriston Offline
    Member

    Registered: 09/19/07
    Posts: 6145
    Loc: Midwest
    Such good advice! The "some will be too hard, but they have to ask and some will be easy and boring, but answer them right anyway" is so smart without being pressure-packed!

    Thanks! I'm taking notes!
    _________________________
    Kriston

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    #3607 - 09/25/07 06:48 PM Re: What do you tell a child about that upcomming test [Re: Kriston]
    cym Offline
    Member

    Registered: 05/01/06
    Posts: 865
    Loc: southwest
    Acs, That's great that your son's already sold on the whole process and institute, etc. I had to coax my son, by telling him that some people really enjoy testing & lifting that ceiling to see how well they can do. The only prep he did was one practice test timed (from the booklet that comes with either ACT or SAT). He'd sit in the dining room and I'd say "go". I just didn't want him to get negative about it if we did a lot of extra work to prep. For the sample test, we broke it up instead of doing it in one sitting, and I went over any wrong answers with him so he'd understand. Key strategy is answer EVERYTHING for ACT but only answer the ones you know for SAT. That was another thing I did--read the instructions very carefully with my son to make sure he understood the difference (SAT wrong answers count against you). I made sure he knew that this was totally for fun, didn't count, wouldn't be on the "permanent record", but could open doors for him.

    Make sure they bring a watch, a calculator, sharpened pencils, ID, info with social security number, or whatever other information they ask them to fill out before the test starts, snack/water bottle.

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