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Educators’ Ultimate Guide to Guide to Prepare for Smarter Balanced Testing

Educators’ Ultimate Guide to Guide to Prepare for Smarter Balanced Testing

At Edmentum, we recognize that it takes a well-prepared educator and confident parents to help students get through the spring testing window. Between making sure that you are staying on pace with curriculum guides, practicing test-taking procedures and strategies, and providing the targeted preparation and reinforcement individual students need, spring testing season can quickly begin to feel overwhelming for educators. The good news is that a little research and planning can go a long way toward ensuring that you’re able to provide the support students need to be successful on their Smarter Balanced assessments. We’ve gathered all of the most useful, detailed, and relevant resources out there on the Smarter Balanced assessments to help put your mind at ease and arm you with an outstanding test-preparation program to put into action.

Smarter Balanced Testing Materials

Sometimes, navigating through these websites can get a little overwhelming. As a place to start, we’ve pulled some of the key resources you’ll need.

State Testing Resources

Practice and Training Tests

Give your students a practice test that is similar to the real thing. This link takes you to state-specific practice tests. Login is not required.

Sample Smarter Balanced Questions

Looking for a specific type of question? Use this link to filter through sample questions. Filters include grade level, subject, claim, item type, and item ID.

Resources for Educators

With resources including interim assessments and a digital library, this should be the go-to page for any additional resources teachers need to help students feel ready.

For Parents and Students

What do parents and their children need to know as students get ready to dive into testing season?

Reporting Scores

Learn what the differences are between scaled scores and achievement levels, how they are determined, and what they mean for students.

Smarter Balanced Test-Preparation Tips, Tricks, and Best Practices for Classroom Teachers

There is something unique about testing of any kind that requires students to recall information they’ve previously learned and apply it to answer the question at hand. If your students don’t have experience with this—whether it’s through low-stakes formative assessment or high-stakes summative tests—they may struggle on test day.

Fortunately, with sustained and regular practice, your students will become familiar with retrieving information and similarly be able to show you what they know by way of assessment so that you can adjust instruction up until test day. Check out the following resources to get started.

5 Proven Ways to Get the Most Out of Practice Testing
The old adage “practice makes perfect” is a familiar turn of phrase for a reason. Ensure that you’re getting the most out of every minute your students are spending on practice testing.

3 Ways Online Practice Can Support Your Test-Prep Program
As you are considering different options to ensure that your students have achieved standards proficiency, it’s critical that you have a program that’s aligned to the Common Core State Standards. Consider this and other benefits of using an online program.

5 Unique Ways to Formatively Assess Your Class

A formative assessment can be fun if you let it! Take a look at five unique ways of assessing student core subject knowledge while still allowing them to have fun and be creative, including journaling, skits, and creating newspaper headlines revolving around the lesson of the day.  

General Test-Prep and Test-Taking Tips for Educators

No matter the exact situation, testing is a stressful process. But, successful test taking, beyond content knowledge, is also a skill that can be taught, acquired, and mastered. Here are some of our best resources on general test prep and test taking to help the Smarter Balanced assessment process go smoothly at your school.

      10 Classroom and School Tips to Improve Test Scores

Helping students achieve Smarter Balanced assessment success is about much more than targeted practice in the classroom. Check out these 10 holistic tips to make sure that your students are ready for their assessments in all ways.

8 Last-Minute Steps Districts Can Take to Improve Test Scores

Administrators may not feel like they have a direct hand in making sure that students are well-prepared for Smarter Balanced assessments. But, there is no shortage of steps administrators can take to ensure that their teachers and students have what they need for a successful testing season—even when it comes down to the wire.

6 Tips for Teachers to Help Students Manage Stress

Testing season inevitably means classroom stress will hit a new high. So, how can you keep anxiety levels in check and help your students stay cool, calm, and collected when test day rolls around? Here are six tips for a low(er) stress testing season:

8 Tips for Parents to Help Your Child Prepare for High-Stakes Tests

Parents and other caregivers are critical to every student’s education journey. So, get them involved in the Smarter Balanced assessment preparation process! Share these eight simple tips with parents to help them support their learners on testing days.

Ready to take your Smarter Balanced assessment preparation program to the next level? Check out Study Island, Edmentum’s online solution for classroom practice and assessment preparation. You can even start your FREE trial of Study Island today!