Test Review Can Be Fun! - Teaching Resources and Lesson Plans - Teaching Ideas 4U by Amy Mezni

Test Review Can Be Fun!

by | Mar 24, 2020 | Educational Resources, Language Arts, Teaching Strategies, Writing | 0 comments

Reviewing for ELA standardized testing can be boring. Reading passage after passage and answering questions does not excite most students. I am the teacher, and those test prep activities didn’t interest me either. 

I wanted my students to enjoy test prep. Otherwise, they would not be fully engaged with the review – and not learn anything. 

My favorite way to practice skills is through gameplay, so I figured out how to review all of the reading and language standards for standardized testing by playing games and puzzles.

The students enjoyed the activities so much that I created some for other grade levels, too! Teachers left great feedback on the resources and asked for more. 

There are two ELA test prep bundles for 3rd, 4th, and 5th grades. The bundles contain the same types of resources, except that the second volume has self-checking Secret Picture Tiles in place of a card game. Otherwise, the difference between the volume 1 and volume 2 bundles is minimal. They both have the same activities, but with different passages, questions, etc. 

There are five different activities in each bundle – enough to break the class into small groups and rotate through activities.

Answer keys are included.

(*I do have a 6th-grade bundle available with a card game, but no volume 2.)

ELA Reading & Language Test Prep Resources for 3rd, 4th, & 5th Grades

1. Reading Practice Tests

Each bundle includes a reading practice test. The test is designed to be very similar to the FSA or AIR test. The Florida Standards Assessment uses paired texts and specific question types. These Reading Practice Tests help students understand the text format and prepare them for what to expect on test day.

Each resource includes paired literature and paired informational texts. The informational texts include images. The passages for grades 3, 4, 5, & 6 are on grade level (estimated.)

Each test includes questions for both pairs of passages, as well as a text with Language errors and questions. The question types include Multiple-Choice, ERSB, Multiselect, Table Match, Selectable Text, Multimedia, and Editing Task Choice.

2. ELA Test Prep Game Show & Practice Review Test

These game shows include 30 questions: 5 questions in 5 categories (Reading, Spelling, Grammar, Vocabulary, & Multimedia.)

The game works in PowerPoint – students select a question, and teachers click to review the question (and then the answer.)

A Practice Review Test is included with each, so teachers can either have students follow along as the game is played, take the test at another time, or give to absent students who missed the review.

*The 5th and 6th-grade Game Shows also include paired reading passages in order to meet the reading standards for comparing elements across texts. The texts should be read before playing the game. For 3rd and 4th grade, short texts are included on the game board as needed.

The questions meet the grade-level standards for Reading and Language.

3. Grammar & Spelling Jenga

For this activity, students need to correctly answer a question before they can remove their Jenga piece. Students answer a question and conference with the other players. Answer key cards are provided so that students can check disputed answers – without seeing all of the other answers.

This review includes a total of 60 questions, 10 in each of 6 categories:

  • Relative Pronouns & Adverbs
  • Progressive Verbs
  • Ordering Adjectives
  • Punctuation
  • Spelling
  • Prepositions

 

Each review category is assigned a color. Students have to answer a question in that category to move a piece of that color. For example, if Spelling is yellow, students need to answer a spelling question before moving a yellow piece.

Teachers will need to purchase a Jenga game and color the ends of the blocks to match the game categories. This can be done with markers or paint. 

4. Vocabulary Kerplunk

Kerplunk games have different colored sticks. When the sticks are pulled, marbles move – or drop. This resource is set up similarly to Jenga – the categories are color-coordinated with the stick colors in Kerplunk.

This resource has two sets of game sheets. There are three categories, with ten questions in each. The categories are:

  • Context Clues (homophones & relating words to their synonyms & antonyms)
  • Affixes
  • Figurative Language (Idioms, Similes & Metaphors, Adages & Proverbs)

With two sets of game sheets, there are a total of 60 questions – 20 in each category.

Again, teachers will need to purchase Kerplunk separately. 

5. Card Games

Each grade level has a different card game that fits its standards. (Some of the games can be used to meet the standards in more than one grade.) These card games are in the ELA Test Prep Bundles Volume 1.

  • 3rd Grade – Shades of Meaning Card game – Players try to collect cards to make word families. It is similar to the card game Authors.
  • 4th Grade – Idioms Go Fish Volume 1 is included in the bundle. Volume 2 is available separately. These games can also be played like Match.
  • 5th Grade – Greek & Latin Roots Build A Word – Similar to rummy, but players need to collect word parts to build words. The longer the word, the more points they earn!
  • 6th Grade – Analogy Match – Players review the types of analogies as they try to make matches. Support cards are included for differentiation.

6. Secret Picture Tiles

For the ELA Test Prep Bundles Volume 2 (3rd, 4th, and 5th grades only), I wanted to add an independent learning activity in place of the card game. Each Volume 2 bundle includes a Secret Picture Tile Resource:

  • 3rd Grade – Comparative & Superlative Adjectives & Adverbs
  • 4th Grade – Commonly Confused Words
  • 5th Grade – Greek & Latin Roots

Again, some of these resources can be used in more than one grade level.

Secret Picture Tiles are 12-piece puzzles that have an answer on the puzzle piece that gets matched to a clue on a “board” (copied on a piece of paper or a digital slide in Google Drive.) 

First, students try to match the answers and clues. Next, they cut apart (or slide) the tiles over the clue to assemble the Secret Picture. 

Each activity is self-correcting. If the answers are correct, the picture will fit together. If the image is mixed up, then the student has some incorrect answers.

Each resource includes five different Secret Picture Tile activity pages.

By using all of the resources in either bundle, students will review all of the core grade level Reading and Language standards. Teachers can use the activities in different ways:

  • Spread them out over time or use them together.
  • Create test prep stations and rotate students through each activity.
  • Use each activity with the whole class by making multiple copies. (The Game Show would need a computer for each group.)

These ELA Test Prep resources can be purchased either individually or in a bundle. However, by purchasing the bundles, they save 20% of the cover prices. 

Looking For Ways To Make Test Review Fun? Check Out My Resources!

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