Helping your child have a successful AIMS testing experience

Helping your child have a
successful AIMS testing
Tonalea Title 1
March 24th, 2010
Donna M. Stokes, MEd (2010)
When is AIMS testing this year?
• Testing at Tonalea will be during the week of
April 12th through April 16th.
• Testing will occur shortly after breakfast and
morning announcements.
• Visitors will be restricted from campus during
testing periods to maintain the optimal testing
environment and security.
Does my child have to take the test?
• Yes. Both state and federal laws require every
child in a public and/or charter school to
participate in student progress testing.
• The state is required to ensure that the
mandated tests are administered correctly at
both the district and school levels.
What does AIMS mean?
• AIMS stands for Arizona’s Instrument to
Measure Standards
• It is sometimes referred to as AIMS DPA. The
DPA means Dual Purpose Assessment.
– Reduced testing time
– Provide data on a student’s weaknesses and strengths
What kind of data is collected?
• AIMS DPA measures data in two ways.
– It is standards based. This measures your child’s
learning based on Arizona’s curriculum or academic
– It is norm-referenced. This means your child is
compared to other students of the same grade level
across the country.
• The norm-referenced test items are from the
Stanford 10 assessment.
What do the scores mean?
• First, your child receives an AIMS overall score
in each of the tested areas: reading, math, and
writing (5th-7th). Science is also given in 4th and
8th grades.
Exceeds the Standards (passing)
Meets the Standards (passing)
Approaches the Standard (failing)
Falls Far Below the Standard (failing)
What do the scores mean?
• Second, your child receives a percentile ranking
(for example, 83rd % or 65th %) based on the
comparison of your child to other students in
the country on selected test items.
• This means, in the first example above, that your
child scored the same or better than 83% of
students in the same grade and/or age group on
those test questions.
What are the parts of the test?
• In grades 3-8, students are assessed in:
– Reading: 3 test sessions
– Math: 3 test sessions
– Writing: 2 hours (Grades 5th-7th this year)
• Grade 4 also is assessed in Science: 2 sessions.
• This year, 2nd Grade students will be taking the
Stanford 10 assessment in Reading, Language
Arts, and Math.
What can I do as a parent to
help my child?
Before the test…
• Keep a positive attitude about tests.
• Mark down the test days on your calendar so that both
you and your child are aware of testing dates.
• Talking about the test with your child can help them
decrease their anxiety.
• Encourage them to do well, but without pressure. It is
important for them to stay relaxed so their brain can
function at its best.
During test week…
• Make sure your child gets enough sleep at night.
• Ensure that your child gets a healthy breakfast.
Avoid heavy foods ( may make them groggy) or
foods with high sugar content (may make them
• Make sure they get up early enough to arrive on
time to school.
During test week…
• Let your child relax for a few hours before
– Go for a walk together.
– Listen to music together.
– Play a simple board or card game together.
• Talk to your child about their feelings. Don’t
hesitate to contact the teacher or school if your
child appears overly concerned or anxious.
After the tests…
• Congratulate your child on a job well done.
• Encourage them to stay on task in the
– Just because AIMS is done, doesn’t mean we don’t
have a lot of learning left to do!
– The work they are doing now will prepare them for
success next year.
When are the school’s results
• The schools usually get the results at the end of the
school year or early in the summer.
• Newspapers print the results usually in July.
• The district has the results on the SUSD website usually
in August.
• This year we have heard that the results will be available
much earlier, but that may change due to budget
Your Child’s Report
• Each child has a printed report of their results.
• The reports are explained in words and by
• We are always happy at Tonalea to sit down with
you to review/explain those results.
Any Questions?
• Handouts with tips are available.
• Sample questions and information are available
on the AZ Dept of Education website: