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Yes, You Can Handle Standardized Tests

Facing a Standardized Test? – Be not afraid! Here is a list of top 5 things you can keep in mind to defeat the dragon.

5. Deal with your feeling “testy.” When you’re worried about something, those anxious feelings can spread. They can spill out at your parents, your brothers or sisters – anybody! If you’re worried about a test, make sure you don’t take it out on other people.

4. Worry early. That’s right. If you’re going to worry about a test, go ahead and worry about it well ahead of time. In other words, get the worry part over with so you can start making the right kind of moves to make the test go well.

3. Those “moves” might start with just keeping up with schoolwork and homework. You know, the big, standardized tests are often just making sure you are learning the stuff you should be learning in school. They’re not really “extra” tests in that way, just “check-ups” that you’re getting along in your schoolwork.

If the test you’re sweating is one you’re supposed to specifically study for – to learn specific content and/or skills – that’s a different story. You’ll need to schedule that study and/or practice into your life.

Even with standardized tests (like the SAT), it helps to “study” for the test by learning the test formats, the rules, and the basic strategies for taking that test (like, when is it worth guessing on a multiple-choice section).

2. Don't overdo it. Know this: The more work you put in, either in specific study or in test-preparation, the closer you will get to the best score you could possibly get. BUT you can overdo it. If you get too anxious and worried, you could waste hours of perfectly good study time just worrying instead of learning anything or practicing any skill.

1. Don't cram. It’s almost never a good idea to leave things to the last minute, and most teachers agree that staying up late the night before a test to “cram” is not the best way to get to test day. Remember, the test will come and go, so it’s best to contain your worry, make a plan to study for the test, follow through on your plan, and the night before the test, chill out, knowing that you’re ready!

Further Reading
This article about time management was written for teachers, but you might want to check out some of the ideas in it: Beat the Clock! – Lessons in Time Management for Middle Graders.

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Updated: 03/25/2015

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