Wow, it has been a long time since my last post. Sorry about that. Lola and I have been keeping busy with studying math, going swimming, learning more English and just having fun.
Latest update on the CRCT - after 4 weeks of studying and actually understanding most of her mathematics, we both felt she was quite equipped to re-take the test, and successfully so. As we drove to the school on the day of her test she looked at me and said "Mom, my tummy hurts. I feel sick." I just thought it was a bit of nerves about taking the test and that she would be fine once she got to the school and saw her ESOL teacher (whom she loves, and luckily the same teacher that would be giving her the re-take of the test).
She took the test, and afterward she told me she was cold and when I felt her forehead and hands she WAS cold - - and clammy. I thought that was quite odd since I had been in the building for about 30 minutes and I wasn't cold at all....
She said she was not sure how she did on the test but we were both happy it was over.
After talking with her a day or so later I learned that she was stressed so much about the test that she was experiencing sweaty palms, an upset stomach and a feeling of being smothered. I was beginning to understand. I asked her if that was the first time she ever felt that way and she said "Oh, no, Mom - - I had it all the time in Russia when I had to take a test."
Test anxiety. Eeeeek.
I never had it - - - I have no idea what it feels like. I know from reading about it that it stops even the best of students dead in their tracks. When I was in school I attacked tests with a mixture of excitement and determination, much like the feeling I have when I ride the roller coasters at Six Flags, knowing the ride will be wonderful and satisfying. Tests were a pleasant challenge to me. I guess different people channel the apprehension of test-taking in different ways. I was one of those people who jumped on it and Lola is one of those people who want to run from it.
The results of the test were recently made known to me and even though her score improved, again Lola missed passing...now I have to attend a conference at the school with her guidance counselor, her teachers and some representatives from the middle school. It will be there that her fate will be determined - - - will she go on to the 6th grade or will she be retained in the 5th grade?
How strange that I experience that same feeling of sweaty palms and upset stomach and I'm not even going to take a test!!
I only want what is best for her. She and I have discussed that re-doing the 5th grade would not be a bad thing. It may actually help her get more comfortable with what she needs to catch up on. We are taking action to assist her in fighting her fears. She is well aware of the importance of being more at ease with taking a test. She is happy to have help in Math and extra tutoring if that will help her comfort level and confidence enough not to freak when she's being tested. She is already signed up for Saturday school through the Russian-American Federation and she will be taking mathematics and Russian grammar / literature classes. In addition, she said she would be happy to go to Kumon for tutoring.
She is a wonderful child and every day I am so proud of her.