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As our standardized testing season approaches, please remember that this test is not the only factor in your child’s academic success. While this test is important, it does not capture the whole picture. Many students experience anxiety before or during the test. Some may feel unprepared or uncomfortable. As a parent, there are several tips to keep in mind before and during the test week that may help to ease your child’s experience and maximize performance.

Before the test:

  • Go ahead and start talking about the upcoming tests. Ask your child how they are feeling, if they are concerned about any particular portions/subjects, and which portions/subjects they are excited about.
  • If your child seems anxious or nervous, remind them that they are not the only students that are feeling this way. (Check out these helpful strategies: https://www.ets.org/s/praxis/pdf/reducing_test_anxiety.pdf)
  • Remind your child that while this test is meaningful, it is not the only factor in determining their success.

During the test:

  • Research shows that children between the ages of six to thirteen should acquire nine to eleven hours of sleep each night. This will help to decrease anxiety, increase their cognitive abilities, and maintain attention.
  • Prepare each night for the mornings so that you are not rushed. Go ahead and pick out clothing, breakfast options, and have their backpacks packed and by the door so they are accessible.
  • Be on time or early to school. This will help to avoid the feeling of rushing which may cause anxiety.
  • EAT BREAKFAST! Research has also shown that students perform better when they eat breakfast in the mornings. If your child prefers to skip breakfast or usually doesn’t have time in the mornings to eat, pack a breakfast for the car or make a smoothie.
  • Be positive about the test. Acknowledge that tests can be hard and that they’re designed so that no one will know all of the answers. Explain that doing your best is what counts. The important thing is to make your child comfortable and confident about the test.

After the test:

  • Talk with your child about his or her feelings about the test and acknowledge their effort.
  • Ask about their concerns and any changes they think they should make in the future.

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If you have any questions or concerns about the upcoming tests, please let your teacher know as we want to ensure our families are informed and comfortable with testing. Test scores will be distributed during the summer months. We are excited to see how each student has grown over the past year!

Jennifer Dunn

*To learn more about Advent Episcopal School, please visit our website: http://www.adventepiscopalschool.org