Reducing Test Anxiety

Does your child ever get anxious before a test? Rest assured they are not alone. Students commonly report that they feel nervous or anxious before taking tests. This is especially true when the tests are standardized and they don’t quite know what to expect.

North Shore Christian School gives the TerraNova Standardized Test this month. The TerraNova Test is an achievement test commonly given to students in grades K-12 that measures achievement in reading, language arts, mathematics, science, social studies, vocabulary, spelling, and other areas. The TerraNova testing is published by CTB/McGraw-Hill and has set the bar for the highest standards in research, item reliability and validity, and technical quality.

There are some things parents can do to help their child feel more prepared and less anxious when it comes to this type of test or any that they may see in their future schooling. Start by reminding your student that it is very normal to feel a little nervous before any test, be it a classroom test, a final exam, or even the SATs. Here are a few tips that you can practice with your child, whether it is for our standardized tests this month or tests in the future.

Be Prepared

Most standardized tests are not something that a student can study for, so prepare in other ways. For example, have all items that will be needed on test day, such as pens or pencils ready to go. Some students get their bags ready the night before and lay out their clothes so they are not pressed for time the morning of the test.

Get a Good Night’s Rest

Study after study has shown that getting adequate sleep can not only help with concentration but can also help keep a student calm. A lack of sleep can exacerbate that nervous feeling the morning of a test.

Eat a Good Breakfast

Fueling up on a protein-rich breakfast can help keep a child focused throughout a long test. Pack some nutritious snacks for breaks that may be allowed during testing days.

Arrive Early

Some students feel more confident once they have arrived at school and the waiting is over. So try to get to the test a few minutes early to steady your nerves and give yourself a few deep breaths before the test begins.

Have a Positive Attitude

Have a conversation with your child about how they need to think positively about their talents and skills before the test. Remind them that this is just a test and not a measure of who they are as a person. It is merely a way of helping teachers and schools know what to work on and how to improve learning for their students. Doing his/her best is all we can ask as parents and teachers. If your child is anxious about taking tests, then talk to your child’s teacher and let them know so they can help.