SATs can be a stressful time for both pupil and teacher so it's important to make sure you have a revision plan in place to get all pupils prepared for the big day. To make things go a little smoother, we’ve put together our top KS2 SATs preparation tips.
Revise little and often
Whilst its tempting to dedicate the last few weeks before SATs solely to revision, it's unlikely that the children will be able to hold their attention for that long and they won’t get the most out of it. They’ll benefit much more from short, sharp bursts of revision. Allowing them to regularly practice the process means they will be able to digest and take away the information much more effectively.
Mental maths every day
Practicing mental maths everyday for 5 minutes at a time will encourage the children’s speed and practice at solving problems. This will also help them get used to the type of questions that could come up on the paper so will reduce their fear of not knowing what to expect. In addition, this will also encourage the children to record their working out and not just keep it in their heads as they could still get a mark if some of the working out is right and the answer is wrong.
Rehearse the exam routine
Unfortunately SATs can be quite a stressful time and many children will find it hard to demonstrate their ability. Rehearsing what the exam environment is like and what they will have to do will make the experience feel a little more normal. For example practicing quietly lining up, sitting at their desks in silence and even writing out their full names in the correct box will all help provide a smooth transition to the real thing.
Revision posters are a great way of ensuring that what you are going over with the class is going in. Get them to create and design their own revision posters by writing the notes in their own words. This will also help to identify any areas that need further practice.
Paired problem solving
Paired problem solving is really useful if you have children in your class with a range of abilities. Pair together a pupil who is confident in their ability with a pupil less confident and ask them to work together to solve the problem. This not only takes the pressure away of a teacher waiting for the answer in front of the whole class but it also allows the students to discuss the concept in their own “terms and language”.
Some students will find it more difficult than others to sit and concentrate on reading a large chunk of text. Regular reading of poetry and non-fiction literature will encourage them to get used to reading for a set period of time and better their understanding of different types of content.
Revise to music
Playing gentle background music in the classroom can help the children relax and concentrate when revising. It will ease the exam period pressure and put them at ease when working on key curriculum themes.