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Glow week and trashketball: no boring test reviews for these students

Who said that getting ready for state testing had to be boring? As students across the state prepared for the New York State English Language Arts (ELA) assessments, the students in Mrs. Amy Bartholomew’s 6th grade ELA classes were doing the same . . . sort of.

And in Abigail Gorinshek’s 5th grade ELA classes, students were surprised with a basketball theme review day, featuring trashketball, as they prepared for the 5th grade NYS ELA assessment.

students in a group in a blue-light-lit dark room with Glow Party sign

Mrs. Bartholomew’s students spent last week reading incredibly challenging text passages and then analyzing and answering multiple choice questions. But since she was asking for so much effort and focus from them, Mrs. Bartholomew decided to reward her students and their hard work by making the experience as fun as possible.

They call these days “Glow Week,” and students spend their ELA class in complete darkness with blacklights, glowsticks, glow-in-the-dark balloons and highlighters to light their way as they work. When students completed test questions accurately, they were allowed to play glow-in-the-dark bowling, ring toss, tic-tac-toe and basketball as a reward.

“It is one of the most fun weeks in 6th grade ELA and students were actually thanking me for their week of test prep!” Mrs. Bartholomew said. “I’m incredibly proud of our 6th graders and all of the hard work they’ve put in during the test preparation week, as well as throughout this entire school year.”

student throwing a foam mini basketball into a trash can while other look on

Meanwhile, in Ms. Gorinshek’s 5th grade ELA classes last week, it was game time! “In preparation for the 5th grade NYS ELA assessment, my students were surprised with a basketball theme review day where they got to play trashketball!” Ms. Gorinshek said.

“In teams, the students worked together to answer questions and when they answered them correctly, their team had a chance to shoot a mini basketball into a trash can to earn points. “The students worked hard, embraced some friendly competition and even found some fun in test prep: who knew!? I am so proud of all of my students for ‘shooting for success on the state test’!”

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