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Monday, March 27, 2017

Open Letter to Parents of School-Age Kids Regarding Test-Taking Fears

Assessments are one of the three major components of education and learning. The other two: curriculum and instruction.

Unhealthy Stress Related to Assessments

This student-focused writer is alarmed at increasing concerns of stress in children related to test-taking.  Please help me slow the progression of this and even reverse it.

Our goal and desire is that our students and their families reap benefit from the experience of test-taking.  For example, benefits of assessments include:  show progression of skills learned, accountability, interventions needed or level of effectiveness of interventions, just to name a few. 

Our staff takes the overall accumulative effect of the entire educational experience very seriously. We are saddened and deeply concerned when we learn that students are experiencing unhealthy stress related to assessments.

Our faculty is passionate about emphasizing that students approach testing as a routine part of their learning experience.  Our expectations are simple, straight forward and designed to fortify students with confidence for assessment of their learning.

It's always a good habit for test takers to do their very best on a test of any description and we certainly desire that our students take tests/assessments seriously.  However, we want to speak cautiously and with the right purpose when saying this to children. Too frequently for this writer's student-centered comfort, an unhealthy fear is established that is often difficult to untie once rooted.  This trepidation can lead to an undesired and unhealthy view of learning and school overall. Help us guide your child toward a positive and healthy approach to successful test-taking.

Please join our staff in approaching all testing with these simple requirements below. We purposefully and intentionally DO NOT emphasize, "you must score this or else "this (bad stuff) will happen'".  With positive nurture and calm we communicate the following to our students:

Adopt the DSL technique:
Do your very best.
2. Show what you know.
3. Let it go!

These simple reminders for your child should provide reassurance and confidence for your child. Please contact us if we can help or if you have questions. email: FORDL@LISD.NET; RODGERSS@LISD.NET; HEASTYYOUNGN@LISD.NET; HERKIMERD@LISD.NET; PERRYSR@LISD.NET  ; BRAWNERTM@LISD.NET ; LOVETTL@LISD.NET or your child's teacher

Mayo Clinic - generalized anxiety disorder

written by Lynn Ford, M. Ed.

Twitter: @lynnhillford

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