Testing Daze

testThought I might share some experiences with FCAT testing. I am the reading coach at my elementary school and I hate the formalized testing that we put the kids through. Even with modifications, it is a torturous time for kids. It is difficult for us adults, so I can imagine how they feel. Today I was the test administrator for a class of fifth grade students. They all know the importance of these tests and their behavior and demeanor reflected it during the testing time. They were focused.

To add some more difficulty to the stressful time, it was the first time that the kids have taken the test online, a fact that made me as nervous as they were. I was afraid I might mess up the whole computer system.

Before the test system was over, two kids had vomited in the trash cans. One was escorted out, the other insisted that he wanted to finish the test. He did. Then he left to go to the clinic.
I don’t like what these tests do to the kids. The fear that permeates the families at our school trickles down to the kids, making them nervous wrecks. Many of these children do very well in their daily work, but freeze up on the tests.But, as usual, which is why I love teaching so much, a bit of humor came to me at the end of the day. The boy who had gone to the clinic returned to class looking much brighter. He told me he was feeling lots better. Then he added: “I have been having a lot of problems with constipation but now it has all come out.”

To which, one of the other kids responded with “TMI!”

Just when I am feeling sorry for them, they bring me back up again. Love these kids.

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