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03/23/2014
Is your child stressed about their upcoming STAAR tests? Try the following tips to help ease your child’s anxieties about the test process:                 

Get the facts. Find out the exact dates your child will be tested and which tests he will take this year. Once you know what's happening, you can help your child feel ready for what’s ahead.       

Talk to your child. Find out whether your child is feeling nervous and if so, why. Often children feel better when they voice their fears, so give your child a chance to talk about the process. If your child is afraid of failing or doing poorly, your    reassurances will help he or she feel less frightened.       

Help your child practice. If your child is familiar with the format of the test, they’ll feel more prepared. Ask his or her teacher or check your state’s Department of Education web site for some sample questions, or other materials that can help him or her get acquainted with the test. At this point teachers are focusing on highlighting their student's strengths. It is too close to the day of the test to stress your child about what they don’t know. Instead, go over things that they are good at. Being able to complete sample questions easily will boost your student's confidence.      

Take care of the basics. See that your child gets a good night’s sleep the night before the test and eats a healthy breakfast that morning.       

Keep your cool. While tests have increasing importance, they are just one measure of student learning, so try to keep the process in perspective. If you remain calm, chances are your child will probably feel calmer, too. 

Source: “Checklist for Test “De-Stress” by Victoria Tharpe, GreatSchools.net staff; For more information

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