Test Anxiety Classroom Strategies for Reducing Test Anxiety
Helping Students with Test Anxiety in your Classroom The following slides have been created to introduce you to some of the tools and teaching strategies that have been proven effective to use with kids who experience test anxiety. All students can benefit from these tools & techniques. For those of you who are already incorporating these into your classroom, we applaud you. If you are not currently using these techniques, but feel they may fit into your classroom, we encourage to try a few and measure the results for yourself.
As a TEACHER what can you do? More than you might know...
Simple Techniques To help ease test anxiety in your students Days Prior to the Test • √Provide Students with a review sheet listing the key terms/people, concepts or ideas that will be on the test. • √ Play a review game with the students in the days prior to the test. • √ Have student brainstorm what terms/concepts or ideas may be on the test and define them. • √ Have students quiz each other using their review sheets or notes. • √ Provide students with possible essay questions before the test. Example: Here are 5 essay questions, 3 will appear on the test or let them choose which 3 to answer. • √ Provide students with a Syllabus that outlines test & quiz dates. Alert students of any changes as soon as possible – Write it on the board.
Day of the Test √Is the room environment free from stress provoking items: Minimize interruption and noise, keep the classroom environment as normal as possible. √ Dim the lights if possible minutes prior to the test to provide a calming environment. Up the lights if needed during the test. √Play soothing music before the actual test is given (some kids may become distracted if music is played during the test) √ Provide a few minutes of relaxation techniques prior to the test *See following slide for example of relaxed breathing techniques* √ Have students close their eyes, envision the test and walk them through positive talk – for example…“I know this material, I will do fine”.
Relaxed Breathing Exercise • Dim the lights or turn off the lights • Play the Breathing Relaxation Exercise We suggest Audio only * You can do this as an entire class just prior to the test or have it playing as your students are walking into class. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-j5Z4E2wkh4
During the test... √ Place the Reducing Test Anxiety Strategies on your whiteboard for students to look at during the test √ Provide students with key time reminders, encouraging them to do their best and not rush – You can write the time on the board, rather than interrupt the test. √ Have all students turn their tests over and wait to hand them in until all students are finished. √Have students get up ½ way through the test and stretch or take a few deep breaths. √Remind students to use a test anxiety reduction strategy by: 1. Placing reminders on the top, middle or bottom of the test 2. Hanging the strategies poster in your classroom 3. Minutes prior to the test, verbally remind the students of the poster on the wall or that you will have them on the Smart Board
Embedding the reminders in your test... it IS this simple! At the Beginning World War II Test Mr. Adney Period 4 Stress Reducing Strategies are available on the board – Just look up if you need them!! In the Test ___.25 The United States involvement in WW II began after the invasion of: a. France b. Great Britain c. Pearl Harbor d. Poland You’re doing great and you’re half way there! If your feeling stressed take a look at Strategies on the board and use one! ___.26 The Germans utilized a new type of war stragety which was called the: a. Blitzkrieg b. Search & Destory c. Surrender d. 3rd Reich At the Bottom of the page One Page Done! Look up at the board for Stress Reducing Strategies and use one if you need to. If not keep going and stay positive !
Stress Reduction Strategies Deep Breathing/Relaxation Breathing Breath in through your nose slowly, hold briefly, then exhale completely and slowly through your mouth as if you were blowing out a candle Repeat 3 times Muscle Constriction and Relaxation Make a fist or curl your toes, squeeze and count to 5, slowly release and Repeat 3 times Visualization Close your eyes or look at a spot on the wall, think of a place you would like to be, a positive memory or a relaxing image Movement/Time Out Take a drink of water, sharpen your pencil– If this works in your classroom Shake your hands/arms by your side or wiggle your feet Turn your test over, put down your pencil and take break Positive Self Talk Say the following to yourself: I am doing my best on this test, I am prepared and know the information This is only one test!!
Stress Reduction Strategies Breath Breath through your nose slowly, hold briefly, then exhale slowly through your mouth – Blow out a candle – Repeat 3 times Relax Make a fist or curl your toes, SQUEEZE, count to 5, slowly release. Repeat 3 times Day Dream Close your eyes or look at a spot on the wall. Think of a relaxing image, positive memory or place you’d like to be. Take a Break Positive Talk I can do this! I’m doing my best! I know this stuff! This is only 1 Test!!! Put your pencil down, wiggle your feet/hands, take a drink of water.