Helping Prepare your Child for the IOWA Test of Basic Skills

Helping Prepare your Child for the IOWA Test of Basic Skills
Dear Parents,
Enclosed is some information to help you prepare your child for the IOWA Test of Basic Skills and
the CoGAT, which will be administered to students in grades one through eight next week. The
Archdiocese of Detroit mandates testing in grades three, five, and seven, and we test in grades
one, two, four, six, and eight as well. Grades three, five, and seven also take the CogAt or
Cognitive Abilities Test.
The IOWA Test provides a nationally norm-referenced measure of a student's basic skills in key
content areas and the CogAt provides a measure of their cognitive abilities. As far as individual
students are concerned, one test is of little use by itself. When compared to similar tests, we get a
better picture of each student's achievement. These results help our teachers and administration
to provide the best possible education to our students because it helps us to identify areas within
the curriculum that may need to be addressed. This is often a time of stress for our students and
parents and we hope that this information will be of help.
Dates for Testing: October 4th – 15th. Make sure that you do not schedule any
appointments for your child during this time. He/she will need to be present all day on the day
of testing. Make up for missed tests are possible but difficult to schedule and are not always
possible within the time allowed.
Be Positive - You will also help your child by staying positive. Try not to stress your child too
much about the exam. While these tests are an important source of information and should be
taken seriously, anxiety over the test can take its toll on your child. Stay upbeat and offer plenty
of encouragement. Mentally and physically preparing your child will emphasize the importance of
the test and reduce their anxiety.
Get Ready for the Test - Last of all, prepare your child on the night before and the day of the
exams. Get your child to bed early and provide a good healthy breakfast the next day. Also, send
your child to school with a good lunch and with all the necessary tools he/she needs such as
pencils with good erasers. All children will need several number 2 pencils. We also
recommend the use of graph paper as scratch paper for the math sections of the test as it helps
keep a student’s work neat and organized.
Results – Remind your child(ren) that the results of their IOWA and CoGAT tests will not affect
their grades directly, but it is important for them to do their best. The results will be used to better
shape curriculum and identify areas where individual students may need more support.
Thank you for your support and cooperation,
Mr. Czaplicki
Ways to Help Your Child Prepare for Tests
To help children prepare adequately for tests (whether teacher-made or
standardized), you can do several things to provide support and create a
positive test-taking experience.
1. The best way to prepare for tests is to study, know the work, and take
the right courses.
2. If your child is nervous at test time, ask his/her teacher for tips on
helping her relax.
3. Make sure that your child is in school during the testing sessions. Do not
plan any doctor or dental appointments on test dates.
4. Remember to keep well-informed about your child's tests. Know how
test results are used, and how they will affect your child's placement in
5. If there are major differences between standardized test scores and
school grades, find out why.
6. Encourage your child to listen carefully to all test-taking directions given
by the teacher and to ask questions about any directions that are unclear.
7. See that your child gets his/her regular amount of sleep before the tests
and is well-rested.
8. Make sure that your child eats his/her usual breakfast on the day of the
test. Hunger can detract from a good test performance.
9. Encourage your child to do his/her best.
Brought to you by the American School Counselor Association