This post originally appeared on the Carly and Adam Blog.

Follow these three simple steps to help you and your students Keep Calm and Test On during standardized testing season.

Step 1: Pretesting Motivation

Spend some time the week before the test investing students by explaining why they are taking these tests and why it is important for them to do their best. It can be helpful to have your administrator or an older student visit your class to help prepare students as well. 

Get the younger grades involved making encouraging posters for the hallways. The more people your students know are behind them, the more invested they will be. 

Step 2: Daily Testing Motivation

Standardized testing is more of a marathon than a sprint. Students will need daily encouragement as well to keep them motivated throughout the week. Each day of testing, write your students an encouraging note on the board. Use this note to remind students of test taking strategies and show students that you believe in them.

In addition to the whole class encouragement, write individualized notes and encourage parents to send in personalized notes for their kids. 

While students are taking the test, all of the anchor charts and other content must be covered, but that doesn’t mean that the walls need to be bare. Have students decorate white butcher paper with motivational phrases to cover those anchor charts. Students can look at the posters during the test for encouragement.

Step 3: End of Testing Motivation

Decide with students as you prepare for testing how you will celebrate their success as a class. This may be in the form of a field trip, movie day, or other class party. Allow students to come up with ideas and vote in order to ensure investment. 

Another idea is to have students make crowns to celebrate their success after the test. Students will be so proud to wear their crowns around school as a sign of their hard work!

Providing students motivation before, during, and after testing is the best way to keep your students engaged throughout the entire testing process. 

Keep Calm and Happy Testing!


As testing time approaches, follow these three simple steps to help you Keep Calm and Test On.Carly and Adam are a husband and wife team. Carly has a degree in Elementary Education and has taught second, third, and sixth grade. Adam has a degree in business management, and he makes bow ties. Adam and Carly have been married for six years. They have a 9 month old daugher and a poodle. To stay connected with Carly and Adam’s teaching tips and classroom freebies be sure to follow them on FacebookPinterestTeachers Pay Teachers, and subscribe to our blog!