by Debbie Malone
Not every student is a skilled test taker. However, testing is necessary to assess whether students have mastered new concepts. It’s also something that will come up again and again in their adult lives. That’s why it’s important for teachers to ensure their students understand the basic principles of good test-taking.
But the start of a new school year brings with it more than a new batch of students. It also brings a whole lot of unknowns, and many teachers might wrongly assume that students, especially in middle school or high school, have already learned good test-taking strategies. Sadly, that’s not always the case, but most teachers won’t find out until after the first exam, when they’re greeted with a host of disappointing test scores.
Don’t assume your students know how to take a test. And even if they do, reminding them about smart test-taking strategies never hurts. Oh, and you know that old adage about how it’s best to stick with your first answer? Well, it turns out that it’s not usually right, so don’t tell them that.