MAP testing is set to begin for Floyd County Schools next week and Superintendent Jeff Wilson says the best thing students can do to prepare is get a good night’s rest and eat a decent breakfast in the morning.
“It’s one of those tests like a thermometer,” he said. “You really can’t prepare for it except eat a good breakfast.”
MAP tests came into play when Wilson first took over as superintendent. The tests usually take only 50 minutes — the equivalent to a class period.
While Wilson acknowledged they’ve attempted to cut back on the amount of testing, he believes the MAP test gives parents, teachers and students a good snapshot of academic growth. The test is administered three times a year.
“It starts at grade level,” he said. As the student continues the test, it will change depending on the student.
As a student gets more answers right, the test will advance to the next grade level. If the student gets answers wrong, questions will be demoted to a lower grade level. Students get their scores immediately since the test is strictly computerized. Wilson thinks that’s a good thing.
“We meet with our kids and set goals,” he said. “We don’t punish them for not meeting their goals.”
The goals — known as MAP growth — are a good tool to help teachers structure their classrooms, Wilson said. If part of the class isn’t doing as well on one subject, the teacher can group student lessons based on MAP growth.
“Most of our reading classes, you’ll see them divided into groups,” Wilson said. Instead of leaving kids behind the tests offer a tailored education, he said.
The test is given in three subjects: math, English language arts and science.