The Counselors' Corner

By Mr. Russell and Mrs. Klopp - April 2018

Test-Taking Strategies:

As you already know, it's testing season in Rutherford County! This year the TCAP test will be from April 16th - 24th (3rd - 5th Grade), while 2nd Grade will test from April 26th - 30th. Kindergarten and 1st Grade are exempt from TCAP Testing. We are excited for this opportunity to see what our awesome students have learned this school year! Here are some test-taking strategies that your students (3rd - 5th Grade) can use on the TCAP Test:

  • Process of Elimination - Much of the TCAP test will be in the form of multiple choice questions. If when reading the possible answer choices the student cannot find the correct answer and have to resort to making an educated guess, it's best to first eliminate the answer choice the student believes is most likely to be incorrect. When eliminating one of the answer choices and then guessing, the student is more likely to guess the correct answer.
  • Read Directions Carefully! - Sometimes students skip over the directions because they believe they'll save time in doing so, and also because they believe the directions will tell them instructions they already know. Reading the directions is crucial because directions usually include the time limit and number of questions on the test, which can be especially important information that helps the student with their pacing throughout the test.
  • Check Your Answers - On longer tests it's normal for students to feel fatigued at the end of the test, and not want to do anything upon completion of the test. With that said, if the student finishes the test early and there is still time remaining, it is best for them to go back and check all of their answers and reread the questions. This strategy can address and fixable errors that occurred during the initial testing.
  • If Guessing, Stick with One Guess - It's inevitable that students might come across a question they simply cannot find the correct answer for. In these situations it is still best to provide answer, even if it is a guess. A question that is left blank is already wrong, but a question with an educated guess still has a chance to be correct. If guessing, stick with the first guess and move on.
  • Look for Key Words/Details - The students know that a reading passage or question usually includes some key words and details. It is best practice to highlight or underline these words to ensure that the student doesn't overlook them and considers them carefully when finding the correct answer.
  • Skip Tough Questions/Do Easy Questions First - If a student comes across a question that he/she knows will take a bit longer, to assist with pacing it is best to give an educated guess and then mark that question (check mark) in the test booklet. This helps the student move forward in the test instead of getting stuck on any single question. Once the student gets to the end of the test, he/she then goes back to take a longer look at all the difficult questions with a feeling of confidence in know that they have already put an answer down for everything!

Guidance Curriculum:

K - 2: How to be a Good Citizen

3 - 5: Test-taking Strategies

April Events:

  • 12th - 4th Quarter Progress Reports
  • 16th - TCAP/TN Ready Testing Begins (3rd - 5th Grade)
  • 26th - TCAP/TN Ready Testing Begins (2nd Grade Only)
  • 28th - Family Reading Day (9 AM - Noon)

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Contact Information:

Matt Russell (3 - 5)
russellj@rcschools.net
(615) 904-3795 ext. 28707


Megan Klopp (K-2)

kloppm@rcschools.net

(615) 904-3795, ext. 28772