We just had our assembly to get ready for "the big test". Our theme this year is Wipeout the MAP! What fun the assembly was for everyone. Teachers dressed up for action and competed in our own special wipeout obstacle course! Students who had tested advanced in the previous year got to help out with the obstacle course.
This teacher is getting ready to ride a scooter while student throw balls at her! Then the teacher has to try to jump rope while being pummeled with pool noodles. While there were a few more stops on the course, the hit of the day was when students got to try to throw a pie at the teacher as they ran by to a pool full of green jello!! When their shaving cream pie hit the mark, the crowd went wild! These teachers who participated were good sports and really got the school ready to wipeout the test!!
I don't like to cram right before the big test, instead choosing to try to prepare all year long. But I do like to make sure my students are fluent with the words that are likely to be found on the test. I want to be sure students can read the directions and questions quickly and fluently so they can use their brain power for answering questions and not trying to read them. I only do these activities for about 5 minutes per time. One activity that works well is test phrases. I went through old test released items and chose phrases that would probably be on tests each year. I typed these phrases onto flashcards and the students spend just a few minutes a couple times a week practicing reading them.
For another group of students, I took words that would probably be found on the test and we did a syllable sort with them. This was just another way to build fluency using test vocabulary. It's quick and an easy way for me to see what words they may still need to work on so the reading of the test is the least of what they have to stress over!
What do you and your school do to prep for the test? I would love to hear about it!