Monday, August 17, 2009

STAR testing

All states have their own standardized test for schools. I always call them tests to see how well the teachers are covering the material to be tested. NOT tests for how well the kids are learning or how smart they are. I am not a supporter of these types of standardized tests and was not a supporter even before I had a daughter with dyslexia.

Last spring when it was time to take the STAR test at school, Gracie and I had many talks about whether or not she was going to take the test. It is not surprising that a kid with dyslexia is not a good standardized test taker. And I was concerned that taking the test would be a total downer for her. But on the other hand, the world is full of standardized tests and the experience would be good for her.

So we made a deal. Take the test the first day and then if it totally freaks her out - then she didn't have to take the rest of the test. Giving her that out made her feel better about taking the test and after one day, she decided to keep going.

We had also told her that it does not matter how she does on the test and that we just want her to have the experience. And we discussed that the STAR testing is not a true measurement of what a kid knows - especially a kid with dyslexia - and that we don't care what score she gets. We also relieved her fear that if she did not do well, she would have to repeat grade 3! Her biggest worry was being held back.

Fast forward to now:

We got the STAR test scores....and she scored proficient in everything -- including LANGUAGE ARTS!!!

This is no minor feat - this is a HUGE accomplishment!

GO GRACIE!!!! Girl Power strikes again!

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

That time of year....

It is that time of year that brings new anxiety to the mom of a dyslexic....the beginning of school. It means new challenges for my daughter and new challenges for me. My daughter has to face a new routine, new pressures and harder work. I have to face bringing a new teacher up to speed, supporting my daugther as she goes thru her new challenges and managing school and educational therapy at the same time.

It feels this way every year. It's just part of the journey.