Let’s face it. Taking a test is a stressful experience for almost everybody. I mean, you’re being quizzed on what you remember from weeks and weeks of classes in a silent room and you can’t ask for help. How could it not be stressful, right?
For kids with ADHD, test taking can be extremely frustrating. There are so many distractions! If you’re testing in a room with other kids, you can easily spend the entire testing period just watching them. And trying to organize your thoughts and focus under pressure can make it almost impossible for your brain to function at all.
Not all homeschoolers administer standardized tests, but usually there will come a time when our kids have to take an exam of some kind. We’ve learned some great test taking tips for ADHD kids that we’re happy to share with you today!
Test Taking Tips for ADHD Students
Rest and eat well before the test.
Getting plenty of sleep the night before the exam is critical to doing well. Unfortunately, resting in general can be difficult for kids with ADHD, so we can help our kids by establishing a good bedtime routine before the exam, so that they’ll be in the habit of preparing for sleep long before they face the anxiety of testing day.
Earlier in this series, we talked about the value of a protein-heavy diet for people with ADHD. Eating a good meal with plenty of protein before an exam can also make it easier for the ADHD brain to focus on the material at hand.
Practice, practice, practice.
Practice exams are an excellent way to help kids prepare for the big day. If you’re creating and administering your own tests for your homeschool, such as for a subject exam, give your kids a few pop quizzes on concepts they’ve mastered. These smaller quizzes can help them isolate key concepts to study for the full test later on.
If your kids are getting ready for a standardized test, take advantage of online practice tests. There are practice tests for the ITBS, CRCT, SAT, ACT, and just about any other standardized test you can think of. When you administer the practice exam, try to recreate the testing environment: no talking, no bathroom breaks, and a set time limit. This will make the actual test experience a little less frightening.
Sit in the front of the room.
This one is a tip that personally works for me. I attend college online, but I had to take a few final exams on campus last semester. It was the first time I had taken a standardized test in over a decade, so I was not thrilled.
This time, though, I sat in the very front row of the class. The room was full of people, but I hardly noticed them. It was just me and the Scantron. That was a huge help, because I had very little to distract me.
If your child will be taking a test in a group, encourage him or her to sit as close to the front of the room as possible. Cutting down on visual distractions can go a long way to test taking success.
Get even more test taking tips for homeschoolers, including kids with ADHD, in our free printable “Test Taking Strategies for Homeschoolers”! This printable includes five suggestions that kids can use during the test to make it easier to pass their exams the first time. Download your free copy below!
>>>>> Test Taking Strategies for Homeschoolers <<<<<
Have your ADHD kids struggled with test taking? How do you help them conquer their pre-exam butterflies? Tell us your suggestions in the comments!
Don’t miss these other posts about teaching children with ADHD!
Plus, get even more suggestions for homeschooling kids with ADHD successfully in my book Homeschooling with ADHD!
This post is part of 31 Tips for ADHD Homeschooling series! Stop by tomorrow for Day 26: Managing Screen Time for Kids with ADHD!