Achievement testing. You probably dread it. Your child probably dreads it. But, just as a physical checkup at the doctor’s office is helpful to make sure your child is growing properly, annual achievement testing can help you make sure your child is making appropriate progress academically. Here are a few tips to reduce the pre-testing stress.
• Help your child know what to expect.
Practice tests can help familiarize your child with the testing situation (setting, format, answer sheets, etc.) and are extremely helpful, especially if your child has never taken a standardized test or has not taken one for a long time.
• Continue with your usual routine.
There’s no need for last-minute cramming. You and your child have been preparing all year! If you focus too much on upcoming testing, your child may feel overly pressured and overwhelmed.
• Make sure your child gets a good night’s sleep.
Try not to plan late-night activities before testing. Send your child to bed on time (or even a little early) so he or she can be well-rested.
• Fix a good healthy breakfast.
Testing is never fun on an empty stomach, so make sure your child eats breakfast. Try to avoid serving breakfast foods that are high in sugar so your child won’t experience a “sugar crash” later on in the day.
• Make testing fun.
Testing? Fun? Yes, testing can be an enjoyable experience, especially if you plan ahead. Make sure your tester gives your child frequent breaks during the day, and bring along some fun things to do during those times. You might even want to prepare some special snacks.
Do you have other tips for a stress-free testing experience? Please share them in a comment!