Is Your Child Ready for the PARCC?

February 12, 2015 0 Comments

The PARCC assessment is slated for release this school year, but is your child is prepared? Let’s take a look at the major test components along with a series of questions designed to help you determine your student’s readiness.

  1. Is your child computer savvy? Say goodbye to the bubble sheet. The PARCC is a completely computer-based assessment. PARCC will make paper and pencil assessments available only to students with an identified need or accommodation. All else can expect to use the computer. In order for your child to be successful, school leaders and teachers should be providing access to technology along with some amount of computer based instruction throughout the school year.
  2. Is your child a strong reader and writer? Students taking the PARCC will interpret literature and write a narrative. They must read text and demonstrate comprehension through writing that analyzes, integrates, and compares ideas, thus showing command of the material.
  3. Does your child communicate clearly? There is a literacy portion of the PARCC that tests students’ speaking and listening proficiency. This component is required, however it will not be included in the end-of-year total assessment score.
  4. Does your child have well-developed critical thinking and problem-solving skills? Many current state tests allow fill in the blank answers and tend to test the lower-level skills. The PARCC is more interactive and engaging. Children will be challenged with real world, complex problems and they must show how they arrive at the solution.
  5. Does your child have strong math skills? The PARCC’s rigorous math section requires that your child demonstrate mastery of grade level skills. Additionally, they must show mathematical reasoning. This means your child should be able to evaluate a math problem, weigh appropriate problem solving strategies and come to a logical conclusion. The assessment also checks the child’s ability to build a mathematical argument and apply concepts to solve the test problems.
  6. Did your child participate in diagnostic and mid-year assessments? These two optional sections of the PARCC are included to help teachers identify students’ strengths and weaknesses. The mid-year assessment goes further by assisting staff in making the necessary changes to the curriculum, type of instruction and professional development needed to meet school goals.

If you responded yes to all these questions then your child is well on their way to being prepared to take the PARCC. We recommend getting a formal practice test as the next step in ensuring your child’s success.