Students complete final round of benchmark testing

Posted: May 20, 2012 in Academics, Language arts, Math, Science

By Ashley Renowden
Staff writer

Most students really don’t like tests, but they are a necessary and helpful tool to help guide their education. Students at Cactus Canyon have recently wrapped up their final round of benchmark testing.
Benchmarks, which are conducted three times each year, help teachers and administrators identify which concepts students know well and which ones need reteaching.
Data is examined after each set of tests and curriculum is adjusted accordingly.
Testing was conducted May 14-16 and covered science, math, and reading skill.
Language arts teacher Gwen Phifer knows that kids don’t usually like testing, but also knows that they are supposed to be a positive thing. She thinks students should feel the same way since they have learned the material already.
“Benchmark tests should have a positive impact on students,” said Mrs. Phifer. “Because it should be easy for them to see how much they are able to understand.”
Eighth grader Jordan Golemon thinks that the benchmarks are a good way for teachers to see how the students are doing. For Golemon to impress her teachers, and show them what she knows, she takes her time and does things in advance to prepare herself.
“I prepare by making sure I study,” said Golemon. “I try to sleep more so I can be well-rested and ready to test.”
Math teacher Maryanne Galvan said math benchmark scores are rising, which she believes is a result of the technology and one-to-one learning.
“The students have netbooks which allows practice to happen in the forms of games, at their own pace,” said Galvan.

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