Wednesday, April 10, 2013

I Mustache you a Question...Are your students ready for the big test?


I must ask...Are your kids ready?
 
Testing season is upon us and it's time for our young students to show us what they know. In lots of classrooms in schools across our country students are cramming in those last few skills and strategies that will help them to do their very best on their state standardized tests. Having taught both 3rd and 1st grades I have seen first hand some of the pressure kids place on themselves before testing.

As teachers we all have those nights right before the test where we wake up from a sound sleep and scream, "Did I teach them how to add fractions? Do they know what an adverb is? What about science....Did I even get to that????" The worries are real but the pressure shouldn't be...keep your classroom a stress free test prep zone. We have a few ideas to help make it fun and engaging so students can feel confident in what they have learned and truly show what they know!

One of my favorite ways to review materials before the big day is in a teach off, where the students become the teachers. Assign students into groups of 3 or 4. Ahead of time decide which 4 or 5 topics the class could use as a whole to review, write each topic onto an index card. Have teams choose an index card. As a team they have to decide how best to teach/review that skill with the class, as a team they need to decide on a way to deliver the review (on the board, a game, question and answer...encourage them to be as creative as possible)

After teams plan their activity and review they teach it to the class. We all know that students retain much more if they are teaching it to another student, so why not tap into that and encourage them to become the teacher instead of just passively absorbing the information that you are teaching.


Another fun way to get students engaged is to make a class set of mustaches, just print ( insert image below into a word document, drag corners to resize as needed) cut and add to a straw or a wooden stick. When reviewing or asking kids questions have them raise their mustache instead of raising their hand if they "Mustache" you a question about the concept being reviewed. This is just a fun way to keep things light and fun. It gives students a novel way to express their questions while having fun.

 Enjoy the bookmark below, pass it out as a reminder the night before the big day. Remind students that the best way to be prepared is to get a good nights rest, eat a good breakfast, get to school early and ROCK the test!


 Wishing everyone the very best as testing weeks approach around the country! Check out some more test prep ideas on our Pinterest boards!
How do you review with your students? leave us a comment below and share your ideas with other teachers.



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