How To Read A Standardized Test

  1. Read the first couple of sentences, the last couple of sentences, and the questions. This way you'll have an idea of what you'll be reading about, plus what you'll be asked to decide about this passage.

  2. Read the passage and look for answers to the questions the general idea, supporting details, and so on.

  3. When you answer the questions, start by eliminating the [choices] that show the least [importance]. Then reread the question and the [rest of the] answers. Always use a process of elimination.

  4. Return to the selection whenever you need to, using a skimming/scanning approach.

  5. When a question asks for the meaning of a word, read the whole sentence or passage in which the word appears. You're not so much being tested on whether you already know the [word] as whether you can figure out a word's meaning from context by using the words around it as clues.

  6. Avoid spending a lot of time coloring the dots. One big, [dark] mark is enough.

From In The Middle by Nancie Atwell


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