Ohio teachers preparing for the OAT's

Discussion in 'Elementary Education' started by iteachm123, Apr 5, 2009.

  1. iteachm123

    iteachm123 Comrade

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    Apr 5, 2009

    I don't know about all of you, but my fourth graders have more or less decided that they are done with learning and that no matter what I teach, it isn't sinking in. I know they are burnt out, just like I am, but after grading the last practice test and looking at all of the C's and below, I wanted to scream and cry, all at the same time. We are on spring break now and will be back to school one week before testing. I told the kids over break to make a list of math topics they still don't understand so we can review that week. I know that when we return, most of them will have nothing written down. I'm just venting and needed to get that off of my chest. Anyone else going through the same thing?:crosseyed
     
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  3. firstgradeteach

    firstgradeteach Comrade

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    Apr 5, 2009

    Thank goodness that I teach first grade! I'm safe for now!

    There is a book called, Testing Miss. Malarky sp? It is all about all of the teachers doing a lot for the students including in gym working on stress reducing yoga, serving brain food at lunch etc. It is a humorous story about the stress of testing.

    At our school they always order T-shirts and the kids are so proud to wear them on test days. I think one year it said, "Are you smarter than a fourth grader?"

    I know they are all stressed at my school too! Keep your head up, do your best! Hopefully the day after the tests, just give the kids a day of just coloring and doing dot to dots!
     
  4. cruiserteacher

    cruiserteacher Comrade

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    Apr 5, 2009

    My kids are burned out too, as am I. I feel like we are testing these kids like crazy this year. We have practice tests, short-cycle district tests, etc. We have four days until spring break. I am going to spend about half my reading time doing test-taking skills/strategies, then the other half doing reader's theatre to try to have some fun with them. They are also getting their movie AR reward from me on Thursday. Hopefully when we return they will be rejuvenated in time for the OAT!

    Also, just to let you know, my reading practice scores look good, but our 4th grade math is looking really bad, so don't feel so bad. I heard a rumor that they are going to cut back on the number of tested indicators for math in the next few years. I hope this is true.
     
  5. Samothrace

    Samothrace Cohort

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    Apr 5, 2009


    I'm going to mention that to my principal who is all about push push push for the oat! I think he would really like the shirt thing as some kind of incentive something.

    I teach art and find all the testing CRAZY! I think my district the kids are going to go down..we don't get a spring break..which they desperately need! lol We also had to close some of the buildings, sending the population up in our rougher and lower scoring buildings populations really high. :dizzy:
     
  6. tracykaliski

    tracykaliski Connoisseur

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    Apr 6, 2009

    Hearing you guys talk about this stuff makes me thankful that I teach in a private school. The only testing we have to do is Terra Nova's for a week once a year. We did ours in January, and that was it.

    Hopefully you guys will make it through with some sanity. I love the idea of giving them a lighter day after the testing is finished. Their poor little brains must be ready to bust!
     
  7. knitter63

    knitter63 Groupie

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    I am on break too, this week, and my 5th graders are DONE. They have given up for the past month. I am tired of not teaching anything but OAT practice. We downloaded previous tests,and the kids still do not realize that THIS IS what the test will look like. I am just praying from now until the test is over. We are testing these kids to death-it is no wonder they hate school and no effort is being put into academics! It starts at the top and trickles down-I have never been so stressed in my life as I have been the past few years our district has been in academic emergency.
    Does anyone have a machine that will imprint the information they need to know on their brains? Spoon feeding it is not helping....
     
  8. TeacherGroupie

    TeacherGroupie Moderator

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    Apr 6, 2009

    For what it's worth, what helps most in my odd little corner of this enterprise is helping people play mentally with the concepts and see how they connect with each other and with the world. Admittedly, I work with grownups - but the more we can sell kids on the concept of the test as a game that they can play, the likelier they are to do well.
     
  9. iteachm123

    iteachm123 Comrade

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    knitter63, I hear ya! and ditto everything you said! Oops, that was a sentence fragment! I guess I'm braindead too!
     
  10. knitter63

    knitter63 Groupie

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    I agree with what you have said, yet even when I tried to make it a game, pumping them up to "prove to all those people in Columbus how smart I know you are"-they still do not perform. Bottom line, the test in our state are not fair-the 5th grade math is the hardest test they will take in their education years-because at least 1/3 of the questions are not concepts they are required to know. I watch with sadness each year as my kids look up at me like "WTH?"
    The kids know that these tests hold so much pressure on them-I have to repeatedly convince them that they WILL go to 6th grade despite their test scores. All in all-a very sad, disheartening situation for all involved.
    I am all for teacher accountability-but testing these kids over and over is not the way. Just my:2cents:
     
  11. knitter63

    knitter63 Groupie

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    We are allowed to be braindead. I vegetated in front of the t.v. today-I couldn't even bring myself to knit or read!:eek:
     
  12. dianejw

    dianejw Companion

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    Apr 10, 2009

    Just a thought....I teach 5th grade math in Ohio and am also getting ready for the achievement test in several weeks. I have tried putting everything into game format for review. We have been playing Jeopardy with OAT parallel questions and we also play "I Have, Who Has." My fifth graders love both of these games. They seem to be enjoying math more than ever and it is a great preparation and review for them.
     
  13. knitter63

    knitter63 Groupie

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    Apr 10, 2009

    Thanks for the tip, dianejw. I have played both with my class, both this year and in the past. You are right, the kids love them and it keeps them engaged. I have to be honest though, my class this year has been DONE since September. This has by far been the most difficult class I have had in 15 years. In my district, we do entirely too much test preparation, and the kids do not perform any better. We do RIT with so much intervention, I might as well have a revolving door on my classroom. It is so hard to teach with the constant interruptions!!
     

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