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Prepping for the Common Core by Subject

Prepping for the Common Core by Subject

posted by Karen Quinn, The Testing Mom - February 17th, 2014

Like any standardized test, your child’s performance on the common core battery can be enhanced through the use of  at-home study materials. Here, we’ll review the varieties of study materials available to help your child prepare for the common core by subject and as a whole.

Created Questions

Since the common core is based on the taught curriculum of a particular year (teaching standards are changing to conform to common core learning guidelines), your child’s textbooks are wonderful resources for learning and studying the common core by subject. Due to the common core’s strong focus on English language arts (ELA), remember to choose pieces of text which offer both ELA questions and more traditional, fact-based questions.

You can quiz your child in a traditional way by asking them questions or using end-of-chapter review quizzes found in most textbooks.  To strengthen their ELA skills, you can also have them read a chosen piece of text and ask them questions about it regarding comprehension, grammar and other fundamental ELA skills.

Free Online Questions

There is a multitude of free resources available online for studying the common core by subject. At, you can view North Carolina’s guidelines – while each state may vary slightly, North Carolina has adopted the common core as-is. Since most of the US has also adopted the common core as-is, most US states can use each other’s guidelines as reference points. Check with your state’s Department of Education website for more specifics. Once you know the precise subjects your child will be tested on, you can collect free online questions and quizzes to use during test prep.

Ready-Made Testing Materials

Perhaps the most comprehensive way to prepare for the common core by subject is to purchase ready-made study guides. These are available in both hard-copy and software-based formats. Be sure to purchase only from a reliable vendor; the only study guides worth purchase are those which have been tailored specifically to each common core age and grade level.

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2 Responses


Why is it important that my child does well on these tests? Are the scores used to decide whether a child belongs in a gifted program?

It depends on the school district you live in and what they do with the scores. Some may use the common core test scores for advanced placement in certain learning groups, etc.

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