Here’s something you can do at home, all year long to help your child prepare for standardized or any other tests:
- Practice the habit of reading and really thinking about the instructions. Many students rush through reading the directions or don’t read them at all in their hurry to get the to the questions/problems. Make reading instructions a habit – not optional – just “the way it’s done.”
Try having your child read the instructions and then explain them to you as though he/she were the teacher. This will help him focus on the meaning and build the habit of paying attention to exactly what the instructions say.
- Practice reading and visualizing the questions. Visualizing helps with understanding. It’s a little mental movie or snapshot that gives you a picture of what is being asked.
Do this for any assignment that has questions to be answered. For multiple-choice questions, also visualize each answer choice.
These are two tools your child needs to have. Using them will make them better test takers all year round. Read the instructions and the questions, then visualize what they mean, and finally verbalize your understanding and the answers. Make this a habit!
Next week, we’ll give you two more tools for helping your child become better at answering questions and taking tests.