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5 Things Every Parent Needs to Know about the California CAASPP Test

What is the CAASPP?

CAASPP stands for California Assessment of Student Performance and Progress.

This test is given to all students in grades 3 to 8 and is now offered online.

There are two components: English Language Arts and Mathematics.

The purpose of the CAASPP assessment is to give more information to teachers, students, and their parents about what students know and determine student likelihood of success in future academic and occupational pursuits.

Things to know as you prepare your child for the CAASPP:

  1. Make sure that your child feels comfortable taking this kind of test. In many cases, different assessments ask questions in a way unfamiliar to the students. You can go through the test prep with your child and answer any questions they have. Classroom teachers are unable to answer questions about the test during the testing session. Click here to access the practice assessment. This will help with test prep practice.

  2. Sometimes the interface of the test is confusing. In order to read the passages, the student will need to know how to scroll down to read the whole passage. Many kids will only read what they see on the page and then begin answering the questions. As you can imagine it is difficult to answer questions without reading the entire passage.

  3. Reading the questions ahead of time helps to prepare your child before they read the passage. The goal of reading these passages is to score proficient or advanced. Therefore, in order to establish the passage’s purpose, it is best to know what to look for before taking the test.

  4. Have your child become comfortable with going back to the text if he or she doesn’t know the answer. Kids may sometimes think that if they aren’t sure about an answer, then the next best thing is to guess. However, there is a better strategy to try first: eliminate one or two wrong answer choices and then go back to the text to confirm the correct answer.

  5. Some questions ask the child to select multiple answers. Practice these questions with your child so he or she anticipates this question type and will understand that there is possibly more than one correct answer.

How to Answer Free Response Questions:

Most kids are inexperienced in answering questions in an open response format.

However, if you have your child practice this secret formula called RACE, he or she is more likely to succeed.

  1. R = Restate the question

  2. A = Answer the question

  3. C = Cite information from the passage

  4. E = Explain your ideas

How to Answer Multiple Choice Questions:

The best thing that you can do when you are helping to prepare your child for the CAASPP is to teach your child how to eliminate the bad answers.

Most multiple choice tests are set up as follows.

  1. Two answers are bad

  2. Two answers are good

  3. Only one answer is best

By teaching your child to first eliminate the bad answers, they are that much closer to choosing the best answer.

Once kids have narrowed it down to the two good answers, sometimes the best answer stares them in the face.

If the child is still stuck, then they need to be taught that they can go back into the passage to find the correct answer.

By following these steps, your child will be completely prepared for the CAASPP.

The test anxiety will dissolve, and your child will begin the test with an improved sense of confidence and skill.


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