I was asked the following question on a previous blog post:
I know that the (standardized) testing always test beyond what the standard level of education is, but what do I do to prepare her for this test. When I taught High School, we always set aside 2 weeks to prepare students. Is there something out there I can get to prepare her for these mastery tests?
Many states require standardized testing for homeschoolers. Some parents and children look forward to showing off how much they know. Some treat it as a necessary evil. Others freak out and worry that they will not be up to par. I am not sure what state you are in, but in most cases, the standardized test is to be held by the parent, not sent to the local school authorities. I treat these tests as a tool to make sure my children have absorbed everything they should know by their current age and grade.
Meanwhile, you still want them to do their best, so a review is in order. Here is how I prepare my kids for standardized tests.
- Determine which test your child will be taking. I use the CAT (California Achievement Test) from an online service www.familylearning.org/. The kids take the test at home, and then it is mailed in for grading. The tests are then returned directly to me. Not all states allow this option.
- Locate an old version of the test online or in the bookstore. You can find test prep workbooks that contain several practice tests, which are essentially tests from previous years. If such a workbook is not available for the test, you are using, search online for ‘sample test’ for that particular test. If there are no sample tests are available for your chosen test, and then purchase a Spectrum Test Prep book. They are available for grades 1-8 For higher grades, purchase Cliffs review books for the subjects you are most worried about.
- Spend 2 weeks to a month reviewing the books. The more time you have the better. Set aside a few hours a day taking sample tests, and then reviewing what you got wrong.
- Two or three days before the test, stop studying. It will do you no good to stress yourself out trying to cram in extra information. Instead, spend the time resting and eating well.
*Have a question about homeschooling? Just ask.
*Want to know more about homeschooling? Start here!