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Slowly but surely we're learning more about the State of Texas Assessments of Academic Readiness test that'll hit classrooms in the coming March. As in: For those who may have missed it, the Texas Education Agency has released some sample test questions for grades 3-8. Keep in mind, though, we don't exactly how the test will be scored yet; that's a few months off in the rapidly approaching horizon. That said ...
In addition to the TEA's own samples, the Dallas Independent School District has just posted its own practice materials for the writing portion of the test. The district's hoping parents will help their kids get a jump on what's sure to be the toughest part of STAAR, especially for the elementary schoolers: the essay component, as students will be expected to write two one-page, 26-line compositions in addition to the regular ol' test-takin'.
DISD's actually turned this into a contest: Winter Writing for STAAR, with movie passes and Chili's gift cards and books up for grabs. Hey, my third-grader wants to write essays during his two weeks off, far as I'm concerned he can have anything he wants. By which I mean comic books and baseball cards.