My students started their state testing yesterday.
While it continues to aggravate me that my kids are getting tested as if it were the end of the school year (which, believe me it is not!), the test is here and we need to deal with it. By the way, did I mention the test is scheduled before the second trimester has ended? And that this year the students will have had a week’s less of instruction because of the snow days we’ve piled up here in Massachusetts?
In the end, all I can do is ensure that my students have some strategies under their belts: strategies for decoding those challenging words – especially important for my English Language Learners, strategies for deriving word meaning within context, strategies for understanding what they’re reading, and strategies for making the best out of this testing situation.
I have no idea how my students did on yesterday’s test. I am not allowed (by law!) to even take a look through students’ completed test booklets to see that they haven’t skipped a question. I do know that I saw children who are 8- and 9-years-old diligently reading (read the directions, read the italics, read the questions, THEN read the selection), and underlining, and rereading, and writing.
If effort and persistence were something we were assessing, every single one of my kids would be proficient. And that makes my day.