Timed Test anxiety! Please help!

Here in Oregon my 3rd grader will have to take her first standardized assessment test this May. I have some practice tests to work with her on it that my son used when he was in 3rd grade. The problem is that she gets major anxiety with anything timed. Her mind goes blank, she panics and won’t answer any questions. I’m afraid she’s going to fail her test, all due to anxiety. She knows the information but just forgets it all as soon as that clock starts. There is no way around this test, she has to take it. Any suggestions on how to help her calm down and focus when that timer starts? TIA

I’m in Oregon also :slight_smile: you might just down play the fact it is timed. My older daughter tends to stress so instead of telling her she had to finish in x amount of time, we told her to bring a book because she would have to wait x amount of time before starting the next part of the test. You might also talk to the tester about if they have a timer the kids can see or just go by the clock. Some how being told they would collect the test at 11:30 was less stressful than “you have 45 minutes to complete the test”.

Good suggestions! I had planned on talking to the tester ahead of time but didn’t think about telling her to bring a book because she would have plenty of time left over. Who knows, maybe she will do better when someone other than me is giving the test!

I have a nephew who is in 1st grade and has the same problem (they do times math tests at his school). We’ve found if he covers the page with a blank piece a paper and just exposes 1 row at a time his anxiety is lessened BC he doesn’t feel as pressured to do the entire page in a set amount of time. You could try practicing that with him. Also you might want to check in with a local learning center in your area (like a testing place such as Sullivan learning center), they have some great tips for all types of test takers or check with some local elementary school teachers to see if they can offer any helpful hints. Or talk w/ the place administering the tests to see if those people have any resources available to you for test taker issues. Best wishes to you child, I hate that tests stress these little ones out

Hi Stacy,
I just did a video on how to help reduce test anxiety. My oldest daughter always gets nervous and the tips I talk about in the video have helped us a lot! Hope it helps you too :slight_smile:

If she gets specifically nervous when taking timed tests, practice them at home often. We started doing them on Fridays each week just to get used to them. I like the Abeka Read and Think Skill sheets. Their just 5 minute tests, they read a section, and then answer 10 questions. I let my kids be in charge of the timer which helps give them more control.

I also like the free 5 minute math drills website. I just print them off and again let them time themselves. We use it as more of a challenge to see how many they can do and try to make it more fun. The more you practice them the less stressful they become. Anyway, I talk about it in more detail in the video :slight_smile:

Thank you so much! You described my daughter so well in your video and I plan on implementing your ideas.

Thank you for your suggestions! :slight_smile: