NAPLAN nerves are inevitable! Easing those nerves is possible.

Pina (Seven Steps presenter) shares her top tips to help students feel more at ease in the build-up to NAPLAN, using exercises that induce muscle memory and confidence. She also provides some handy ideas to create a relaxing setting leading up to and on the day of NAPLAN, to ensure your students can give it their best shot without feeling too overwhelmed.

Repetition of activities leading up to NAPLAN is a real game changer! It eliminates the need for students to think about the smaller things that may be filling their brain on test day and places creativity front of mind.

Planning and creating a relaxed atmosphere is crucial.

Pina, Seven Steps presenter

Tip 1: See both sides

For a persuasive writing brainstorm activity, teach students to brainstorm arguments for both sides, but only in a mad minute! Then, they can select the side they’d like to write about. Get them used to doing this in a short amount of time, to fit the NAPLAN 5-minute planning time.

Tip 2: Quick draw

Practise drawing the Writing Graph (see example) on scrap A4 paper and challenge students to draw theirs in around 7 seconds. This can be a fun, energetic task to distract students from their NAPLAN nerves.

Teacher Hub has lots more examples of texts plotted on the Writing Graph – view them all on the Resource Library.

Tip 3: Check it off 

Guide your students through the writing graph process, to ensure they’re ticking off the boxes as they start a new paragraph. It will help them get into the habit of systematically doing this.

Tip 4: Create an Alpha zone

The Alpha brain state is responsible for creative and abstract thought. So, create an Alpha zone while your students are practising writing by keeping noise and distractions to a minimum.

Tip 5: Change your layout

Several days before NAPLAN, position tables and chairs in the layout you have planned for NAPLAN. Eliminating the feeling of change in the classroom on test day is crucial! Your students will already be feeling different on NAPLAN test day, so let’s make sure the classroom feels as it would on a regular school day!

Tip 6: Don’t lurk

Actively supervise your class without disturbing them. Position yourself where you can see each student without having to move around.

The next best way to improve marks

Find the rest of this 6-part video series plus exclusive NAPLAN resources on Teacher Hub.

Looking for more information, classroom activities, and advice on preparing for NAPLAN?

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