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« Response: Common Core & ELLs -- Part Two | Main | Response: High-Stakes Testing & Student Engagement »

How Can We Help Students Feel Engaged With State-Mandated Tests?

Margaret Ridgeway asks:

In a recent blog you dealt with student engagement. I have a related question that came up as I was teaching summer remediation. I teach in a small rural high school in Louisiana where I see many students are disengaged in the classroom. During summer school, however, I also discovered some students are similarly disengaged with state mandated tests. Unfortunately, poor performance on tests for these students is not so much a measure of their abilities but more a symptom of their disengagement. Some see no reason to do well on them and do not even bother to try. What are some strategies for getting these students engaged in the process and helping them see that this is a required building block for creating a successful future?

I've previously posted a number of posts on student engagement, so for this "question-of-the-week" I'd like to focus on the standardized test portion of Margaret's question. It is that time of the year, after all.

How can we encourage more student engagement in taking high-stakes standardized tests and, if we can, should we?

Please share your thoughts in the comments or, if you prefer, feel free to email them to me.

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