Tara, Science in the City:Many of my students, I believe, don’t really know how to study. I try to use some of the review time in class to introduce and practice study skills. These include websites with practice questions, use of quizlet, creation of a study guide. I also have put a big emphasis on close reading and annotating of test questions, and have given bonus points to students who annotated on their test.
Clair, High School English on a Shoestring Budget: To trust themselves. My students consistently demonstrate they know more than their test scores reflect. During review games, I praise how much they know, to try to build up their self-confidence– they DO know this. In my classroom, I also have the luxury to keep testing low-stakes. It’s unfortunate the so much of teaching is turning into testing– after school, there are no test sin life. No one-off chances to prove what you know. Jobs rely on hard work, application, and frequently include the opportunity to try again (with little or no penalty.) So, I also try to remind my students of that– life is not about taking tests, but about demonstrating what they can do with the information.
Lauralee,The Language Arts Classroom:Students need to study every night (or almost every night) – not cram before the test. They don’t like to hear that, but it is true.
I try to help them model it. I ask them to take out their notes, maybe with five minutes left of class. I ask them to read over the notes, and suggest that they do that every day. Once they are familiar with the material, they can focus on individual points before the test.