GAWD I hate this high-stakes testing BS

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by TeDo, Apr 17, 2012.

  1. TeDo

    TeDo Guest

    difficult child 1 has spent the last 1/2 hour (10-10:30) SO FAR ranting and raving about everything from difficult child 2 getting up to go to the bathroom to us not bringing Pappa Murphy's pizza home like I'd said 2 MONTHS AGO (I LIED don't you know) to the real cause....... the Reading portion of the high-stakes testing tomorrow. "Too much reading" and "It's too hard" and "It's too much" and "I'm not going to take the stupid test tomorrow" and on and on and on. His anxiety over this stupid test are SKY HIGH and I don't know how to talk him out of it.

    I explained that every kid in the US has to take them, they are federally mandated. I explained that the reading portion CANNOT be read for him because it's a test of his reading skills. His response... "But I can't read that much". For the math portion today, it was read to him and he said he "tried hard this time". He absolutely does NOT understand the testing in the first place but he's really stressing about this reading part. It's going to be a loooooong night.

    Thanks for letting me vent.
     
  2. InsaneCdn

    InsaneCdn Well-Known Member

    Oh ya. Anxiety = stress = sleep problems = more anxiety, more stress, and...

    Ya. {{hugs}} to both of you.

    I've done it (univ... ).
    Gone through it with difficult child over the stupidest stuff.
    Walked husband through it with various career issues over the years.

    It's human.
    It's over the top if you're dealing with a difficult child.. an exaggerated form. But it isn't unusual, just extreme.
     
  3. buddy

    buddy New Member

    One other thing that we tell kids is that the test is meant to get harder and harder so that everyone gets to a point where they can't do it, that way when he starts not being able to answer, he wont worry over it.

    I hate them too. I am glad that Q got switched to the adapted kind, not the lowest one but the middle one that we have now. the choices are put in front of him and he picks the answer out. he did much better on that. Your boys are too high academically for that, but I wish there was a way to opt out....it is just too stressful and there are better measures of progress for kids. I get the reasons it is good for measuring group trends, following how he is doing comparing one year to another etc. But there are other ways...uggg, sorry it is hard for him.

    HUGS TeDo, you are an excellent mom...
     
  4. TeDo

    TeDo Guest

    He doesn't want to read PERIOD. It really IS hard for him. He said 2 years ago (he had psychiatrist excuse for last year's) the person proctoring his small group (accommodation) actually read it for them. I don't know if he's confusing the tests (math CAN be read to them) or if the proctor broke "the rules" by doing it. I told him if they did, it was against the rules and he should have told me back then. He didn't know they weren't supposed to.

    I'm to the point where I'm tempted to tell him to just guess and not bother. This will be the last year he can do that without a penalty to HIM. Starting next year, it's the GRAD tests they have to pass to graduate. He's already talking about wanting to quit when he turns 16. I informed him the law here has changed to 18. THAT did not make him happy because he's supposed to graduate when he's 17 which is my fault for having him "start too early"....everyone else will be 18 and they can quit before they graduate if they want to. I told him he could always go an extra year. He did NOT like that idea either.

    I really feel sorry for him. It's times like this that I wish he had a PRN for his anxiety.
     
  5. buddy

    buddy New Member

    He probably mixed up the reading directions with the actual reading part...there is not any reason a proctor would break such strict rules, with a small group of kids it would get out and they would be in huge trouble.

    The tests stink and I wish he didn't have to do it. I graduated at 17, started college then too...it did feel weird. But people thought I was smart, really it was just that is what the dates were back then, you could turn 5 by Dec 1. My BD is Nov 30. I was super immature for the early grades, it all came out in the wash by fourth grade. At least with the grad tests, they can do it again and again.... he can get special coaching for it too. (I hope so, I forget we are talking about your district, sigh)....every district I have worked in around here has had that and I have seen some pretty challenged students pass. Even kids who were deaf/english as a second language and years behind academically. Hopefully by then no biggie. Tell him to put all C's and be done with it, (kidding they can make them do it again if it is deemed unreliable) but it is in the directions to just do the ones that are easier to do at first, then go back and make their best guess.... remind him it is ok to get them wrong. I hated reading too... really hated it, I am a slow reader and just hated it so I really feel for him.
     
  6. DaisyFace

    DaisyFace Love me...Love me not

    TeDo--

    Would it help to do practice tests at home?

    There are really inexpensive test workbooks out there for reading skills and reading comprehension. It's the same format as the standardized tests - read the passage, answer the questions, fill in the little circles.
     
  7. Bunny

    Bunny Guest

    Tedo, if he has such trouble reading do they give him extra time to take the test? I know that that accomodation can be made for kids who have an IEP that states that they get extra time for tests.
     
  8. keista

    keista New Member

    ((((HUGS)))) Tell difficult child no one likes these tests except for politicians.

    And if anyone is thinking that these tests are easier for smart kids, think again. Since we do have the luxury of retakes, I kept son home from school yesterday so he'd miss the second half of reading. WHY His classroom temp was set at "sauna". Thermostats are controlled by the district so it could not be adjusted and guess what else? No windows in that room for ventilation! He managed the test fine, but was complete spent by the end of the day due to additional stressors, so, retakes it was. The girls spent about an hour complaining about the tests last night. Too long, too boring, nothing to do when they finish early. DD2 was looking forward to the math part, but she's already burnt out by the reading. It's just TOO much for any kid.

    Good news due to the budget cuts - most states are only doing one set of tests - their state test. Used to be a state test and NRTs(?) - some national standardized test. At least here, that one's been dropped. in my opinion we should just have a single national test, then at least we could compare all states on equal footing.
     
  9. TeDo

    TeDo Guest

    DF, they have been doing practice things as part of the regular school lessons throughout the year. The Reading test is today. He could have done a specific practice Math test for extra credit in math but he flat out refused. He doesn't do any more than he absolutely has to.

    Bunny, for these tests the ALWAYS get to take as much time as they need. Absolutely NO ONE has any kind of a time limit.

    Keista, our schools will still continue to do the other tests that don't count against funding because it gives the districts & teachers an idea of how kids will do on the state tests. That is what the school I worked for did. The ones that did poorly on the Fall national tests got lots of extra help throughout the school year so their Spring national scores will go up AND their state testing scores will be better. It IS very sad. For us, it's VERY anxiety provoking.

    Insane, he seemed to have exhausted himself with his ranting last night. He is still sleeping at 8:30!!
     
  10. Methuselah

    Methuselah New Member

    TeDo, my kids stressed over the state tests, too, because the school teaches them to stress about it. :-/

    I solved it by telling my kids the truth: the state tests are the school's and teachers' tests. They test the students to make sure the school and teachers are doing their jobs. If the school doesn't do well, it tells the state the school isn't doing their job and is failing the students. Do your best work, so the state knows Mrs. X is doing her best work.

    This helped my kids immensely. They don't fear it like the plague anymore.
     
  11. DammitJanet

    DammitJanet Well-Known Member Staff Member

    For some reason me and my kids have a testing gene. We can all take any of those standardized tests and perform extremely well even if we dont know much of the material. In fact, I took a test to be an air traffic controller and I never even took any classes in that sort of thing and got an 87. I thought it was just an aptitude test but it was for people who had been pilots or in the air force or stuff like that!

    You sort of have to have a feel for the test. Now all of us do read very well, even Cory who is a 9th grade drop out. Reading comprehension is high. So we look at the questions and then scan the paragraphs for the answers. Much easier. Such as if the question has to do with Mark and his red ball. You look for Mark and Ball.

    Also, never is normally not a good answer. There is truth in Never say Never. If there are is a whole list of options and you arent sure and there is a D for all of the above...take it. Especially if you think two of the answers are right.

    My kids are not super smart. I mean look...Cory dropped out of school and Jamie has an IQ of like 105 but they always came home with superior scores on those state tests. I was in the first class that had to take the graduation tests in VA and I scored the second highest in the state. (and they still didnt give me a diploma!)
     
  12. TeDo

    TeDo Guest

    Well, it's over now and he was a PITA all morning and on the drive over but took the test and he said he "tried". Not sure what that means but the rest of the day has gone great. Sooooo glad that is over. Stressed, I told him what you told your kids, that it's only a test of how well the TEACHERs did and that there is no penalty to him. That seemed to help a little. I think I'll wait to tell him that starting next year he has to PASS the tests in order to graduate. LOL
     
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