It may be your child taking all the tests, but you're the one who needs to help him through it. Here are some test taking tips for parents to help you get your child ready.
10 Test Taking Tips
Tip #1: Make attendance a priority, especially on days that you know standardized testing will be administered or there is a test in the classroom. Though it's important for your child to be in school as many days as possible, making sure he's there when the test is taken helps to ensure he won't lose more learning time because he has to make up a test during school.
Tip #2: Make a note of test days on the calendar -- from spelling quizzes to big high-stakes tests. That way both you and your child know what's coming and will be prepared.
Tip #3: Look over your child's homework daily and check for understanding. Subjects like science, social studies and math often have cumulative exams at the end of units or chapters. If your child is struggling with something now, it won't be easy for her to have time to try again to learn it just before the test.
Tip #4: Avoid pressuring your child and provide him with encouragement. Few children want to fail, and most will try their hardest to do well. Being afraid of your reaction to a bad test grade can increase anxiety, which makes careless mistakes more likely.
Tip #5: Confirm that your child will be receiving any pre-determined accommodations during tests. These accommodations are detailed in his IEP or 504 plan. If he doesn't have one but needs some assistance, make sure you've communicated with his teacher about his needs.
Tip #6: Set a reasonable bedtime and stick to it. Many parents underestimate the importance of a rested mind and body. Tired children have difficulty focusing and are easily flustered by challenges.
Tip #7: Make sure your child has enough time to wake up fully before he has to go to school. Just as rest is important, so is having enough time to get his brain engaged and in gear. If his test is first thing in the morning, he can't afford to spend the first hour of school groggy and unfocused.
Tip #8: Provide a high-protein, healthy, low-sugar breakfast for your child. Kids learn better on full stomachs, but if their stomachs are full of sugary, heavy foods that will make them sleepy or slightly queasy, it's not much better than an empty stomach.
Tip #9: Talk to your child about how the test went, what he did well and what he would have done differently. Think of it as a mini-debriefing or brainstorming session. You can talk about test-taking strategies after the fact as easily as beforehand.
Tip #10: Go over the test with your child when he gets it back or when you receive the scores. Together you can look at any mistakes he made and correct them so he knows the information for the next test. After all, just because the test is done doesn't mean he can forget everything he learned!