Saturday School for Test Taking Skills???

Discussion in 'Elementary Education' started by YoungTeacherGuy, Jan 25, 2011.

  1. YoungTeacherGuy

    YoungTeacherGuy Phenom

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    Jan 25, 2011

    Last week, my principal approached me and asked if I'd be interested in teaching Saturday School (something my school has NEVER done). She explained that I would be spending 4-6 Saturdays teaching 20-25 second graders test taking strategies. In my state (California), kindergarteners and first graders don't take state testing; thus, the first year they're tested is in second grade.

    The 20-25 students would be chosen carefully. We would like to enroll students who are "Strategic" (working slightly below "Benchmark" standards). Each of the 4-6 sessions would be 3-hours-long and the kids would be rewarded with lunch at the end of each session (pizza or sub sandwiches, most likely).

    I immediatley said "YES!!!" (thinking that this would be a great opportunity for the kids to get some extra test taking strategies & because I want our students to be successful on the California Standards Test). However, now that I'm thinking about it, I'm not sure if I'm actually doing these kids a disservice by solely focusing on test taking strategies.

    Your thoughts??? :dizzy:
     
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  3. Peachyness

    Peachyness Virtuoso

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    Jan 25, 2011

    Our school does something similar but it's for 8 weeks, four days a week for two hours. THe pay is great! Hahaha. But, all we focus on is test taking strategies and getting them ready and hyped up for the cst. We did notice that those kiddos did do better than the other kiddos. We also worked with the strategic kids.
     
  4. CFClassroom

    CFClassroom Connoisseur

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    Jan 26, 2011

    I actually don't think you are doing a disservice in this situation and here is why. Unfortunately, test taking skills is now part of most curriculums. By offering this as a Saturday program and as a separate thing from the normal school day will allow the normal school day to be focused on quality activities and experiences.
     
  5. mopar

    mopar Multitudinous

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    Jan 26, 2011

    I think that if it is extra you aren't doing a disservice. I just wonder about 2nd graders sitting and working on testing strategies for three hours. You must do something to break this up....
     
  6. tnv

    tnv Rookie

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    Jan 26, 2011

    My school has done something like this for the past couple of years. I agree with mopar that it needs to be broken up. I think our entire session was two hours with a ten minute break in between.
     
  7. callmebob

    callmebob Enthusiast

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    Feb 2, 2011

    There better be some serious pay benefits to take on saturday time with. I also have a hard time thinking that 3 hours of strategy time for 2nd graders is a bit extreme.
     
  8. H2H

    H2H Rookie

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    Feb 3, 2011

    I think it's fine to teach test taking strategies. Don't forget that calling it "test taking strategies" is just a label because the test is the way students demonstrate what they have learned to do. However, "test taking strategies" are simply good tools for ALL people to use. It involves reasoning, eliminating obviously bad choices, cross referencing ideas with evidence, monitoring and clarifying difficult concepts, and so on. Don't let a label deter you, or anyone for that matter, from teaching strategies that are applicable in all settings by people of all ages.
     
  9. TeacherApr

    TeacherApr Groupie

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    Feb 3, 2011

    Why would it be a disservice?
    Test taking strategies include: reading directions carefully, process of elimination, and filling in bubbles CORRECTLY.
     

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