‘Tis the Season… for Standardized Tests

As a teacher, I had a love/hate relationship with standardized tests. I hated the amount of time they took away from teaching. I hated how low scores made children (and parents!) feel badly. However, I loved the data and insight that tests could provide, helping me fine-tune my teaching to the exact needs of my students.

If you’re the parent of a child with dyslexia, you know how stressful these tests can be for your child. If your child has a diagnosis of dyslexia, be sure to talk with your school about accommodations such as additional time or having the test read aloud. Don’t assume your child will receive them.

How can these tests be useful to a child who is reading below grade level? Don’t they keep showing how behind he/she is? 

Look for improvement in your child’s percentile since last year’s test.

What kinds of gains are possible?

One of my students has been with me since last June. He’s in third grade. Last year, his standardized test scores revealed he read at the kindergarten level. In 10 months of tutoring, we are nearly halfway finished with the Barton program. His mother came to me, ecstatic that his winter standardized test scores showed he was on grade level – with no accommodations on his MAPS test. That’s THREE years of improvement in less than a year of tutoring!

I share this to show you what the RIGHT kind of tutoring can do for a child. It has to be Orton-Gillingham based. Yes, tutoring for dyslexia is time-consuming. It takes a lot of effort. It’s a huge commitment for a family. But for a child, it turns the world around!