Parent and Staff Resources

How to Help Your Child Prepare for Standardized Tests

Before the Test

Be prepared

Many teachers will send information home about testing schedules and class preparation plans. Information that you should know includes:

  • What is the test and what will it measure?
  • Will the test results affect your child, school or both?
  • Are there ways that you can help your child prepare for the test?


Help your child in areas that are difficult for him/her

If your child has struggled with a particular area or subject in the past, you may be able to help him or her overcome some of that difficulty by providing some extra practice. Many workbooks target test preparation by offering practice exercises and questions like the ones students see on the test. Focus your practice on your child's weaknesses rather than his or her strengths.

Give your child a chance to practice

If your child has trouble taking tests, try practicing test questions and studying new words. Your child's school or the library may have some samples to use. Keep the sessions short, and set small, manageable goals so that the extra practice boosts your child's confidence.

If you have concerns about the test or testing situation, talk with your child's teacher

Discuss your concerns with the teacher and/or school administrator. If you believe that your child's difficulty with standardized tests may be the symptom of a problem such as a language or learning difficulty, speak with your child's teacher to learn if your child qualifies for any assessment accommodations.

On Test Day

  • Make sure your child gets enough rest the night before the test. An early bedtime helps.
  • Provide a nutritious breakfast or make sure they can eat breakfast at school (and encourage your child to eat it).
  • Make certain your child is at school on time. (Any missed tests must be rescheduled.)
  • Do not plan to check your child out of school before lunch during the testing period. (Classes may not be interrupted during tests.) Avoid scheduling appointments such as doctor or dentist at this time.
  • Encourage your student by using statements such as "You are smart," "I know you will do your best," and "You have been working hard all year and you will do well."
  • Remind your child the test is an opportunity to show how smart he/she is. However, if he or she does not know all the answers, it will be okay. “Thinking choices” are okay!
    • Relax and help your child do the same.


    Tips to help students do their best on the test:

    Encourage your student to employ good study and testing-taking skills, including following directions carefully, avoiding careless errors and reviewing work.

    Explain the purpose of the tests. The assessments give students an opportunity to show what they have learned in school. They also give teachers information that helps them plan instruction.

    Point out that some items may be more difficult than others.

    Be certain that your child gets plenty of sleep and has a healthy breakfast and lunch. Taking tests is hard work for many students and can require a lot of energy.

    Be certain your student is at school on time. Rushing and worrying about being late could affect performance on the tests.

    Remember to ask your student about the testing at the end of each day.

    Family Engagement Resource Library

    Testing Resources Videos

    Dalton Family Engagement Resource Library - Testing

    Rosa Cuna and Student Raymundo Moncayo discuss the tests administered in DPS and how to handle the anxiety that students may experience associated with these tests.

    Dalton Family Engagement

    Rosa Cuna y Ramundo Moncayo hablan sobre las examenes.

    Testing Dates 2019

    End of Grades

    • April 9: DMS ELA 1 (8th)
    • April 10: DMS ELA 2/3 (8th)
    • April 11: DMS Math 1 & 2 (8th)
    • April 12: DMS Science (8th)
    • April 15: Elementary ELA 1 and DMS Social Studies (8th)
    • April 16: Elementary ELA 2 and DMS ELA 1 (7th)
    • April 17: Elementary ELA 3 and DMS ELA 2/3 (7th)
    • April 18: Elementary Makeup and DMS Math 1 & 2 (7th)
    • April 22: Elementary Makeup and DMS ELA 1 (6th)
    • April 23: Elementary Math 1 and DMS ELA 2/3 (6th)
    • April 24: Elementary Math 2 and DMS Math 1 & 2 (6th)
    • April 25: Elementary Science and DMS Makeup
    • April 26: Elementary Makeup
    • April 29: Elementary Social Studies
    • April 30: Elementary Makeup

    End of Course Exams for High School

    • 9th Lit Section 1 - April 29
    • 9th Lit Sections 2 and 3 - April 30
    • American Lit Section 1 - May 1
    • American Lit Sections 2 and 3 - May 2
    • Algebra 1 - May 3
    • Geometry - May 6
    • AP Government - May 6
    • AP Environmental Science - May 6
    • US History - May 7
    • IB HOA - May 7, 8
    • AP Physics 1 - May 7
    • AP Literature - May 8
    • Economics - May 8
    • AP Chemistry - May 9
    • Biology - May 9
    • IB Biology - May 9, 10
    • AP Psychology - May 9
    • Physical Science - May 10
    • AP U.S. History - May 10
    • IB Psychology - May 10, 13
    • AP Biology - May 13
    • IB Math/Math Studies - May 13, 14
    • AP Physics C - May 13
    • AP Calculus AB & BC - May 14
    • IB German and Latin - May 14
    • German and Latin - May 15
    • IB Math HL - 3 - May 15
    • AP Language - May 15
    • AP World History - May 16
    • IB Lang. & Lit. - May 16, 17
    • AP Statistics - May 16
    • AP Economics - May 17
    • AP Computer Science A - May 17
    • IB Spanish - May 21, 22
    • IB Chemistry - May 22, 23
    • IB French - May 23, 24