What to Do After Standardized Testing: 25+ Superb Activities

Trying to figure out what to do after standardized testing?

This post gives you a list of what to do after standardized testing activities that provide a smooth transition from state testing mode back to normal classroom routines.

Never worry again about what to do after standardized testing.

Related: For more content similar to this post, check out our test-prep resources.

What to Do After Standardized Testing: 25+ Incredible Tasks

Reciprocal Teaching

What kid doesn’t love to take on the role of teacher?

Reciprocal teaching is the student taking on the role of teacher.  Here’s how it works…

Put learners into groups of 3 or 4.

Assign each child within the group a skill or strategy. They then take turns teaching each other their skill – about 10 minutes each.

Reading Buddies

Participating in reading buddies with another grade level is so much fun for kids.

The older kids do the “teaching” role while the younger ones take on the “learner” role. (e.g book project or craft)

Alternatively…you could do math or science buddies. The older kids help the little ones practice math skills or create a simple math game.

Reading Week

Many parents enjoy opportunities to be involved with their child’s class, and Reading Week is a chance to do that.

Send an email/Google Doc to parents and faculty members (specials’ teachers, administrators, specialists, and/or support staff).

Ask if they would be willing to commit 15 to 30 minutes of their time to come and read a book to students.

Offer book recommendations if needed.

Career Day

what to do after standardized testing

Invite professionals from a variety of careers to come and speak with students about the skills, education, and mindset needed for their respective careers.

Include professions from technical schools, trade schools, community colleges, and 4-year schools. Sprinkle a few entrepreneurs into the mix.

Letter Writing

Have students write letters to the students who will be moving up to their grade level the following school year.

With this activity, students practice writing a letter with good details since they’ll want to include all the ins and outs of their current grade level.

In addition to writing letters to students, consider having elementary students write letters to room parents, cafeteria staff, favorite teachers, or anyone else in the school who they’d like to show appreciation for the services/help they’ve provided to them and/or others during the school year.

Gift Making

When you’re wondering what to do after standardized testing, a nice gesture is to have students create simple gifts of appreciation for mothers and/or room parents.

Gifts don’t have to be fancy… think a painted wooden picture frame, hand-crafted art project, poem, etc.

Art

Art is a great outlet to take advantage of after standardized testing as kids have the freedom to express themselves creatively.

Mosaic and papier mache are two favorites among elementary students.

If you really want to take art a bit further, consider origami, the art of folding paper.

what to do after standardized testing

The children’s book Sadako and the Thousand Paper Cranes makes a great read aloud for an origami art lesson.

Poetry

Host a Poetry Open Mic, a day where students present and/or recite poetry masterpieces to other classes and/or their parents.

To get started, check out these poetry writing lessons for kids.

Songwriting

Take a melody from a popular kids’ song, and have learners add their own lyrics.

You may need to first model writing one or two songs with students. Then set them free to begin their own songwriting! (with another melody though in order to minimize copying.)  

Afterwards, students present their songs to the class.

Literature Circles

Book clubs in the form of literature circles easily teach to the standards, and by year’s end, students have had many opportunities to use various reading skills/strategies with a variety of texts.

Because of this, each reader should be able to perform every literature circle role assigned with minimal direct instruction.  

Here’s a list of literature circle roles you can use with fiction and nonfiction books.

Sudoku Puzzles

Sudoku. The ultimate critical thinking and logic puzzle!

what to do after state testing

Once they have a clear strategy for completing one, these puzzles engage students very well.

In the beginning, they need guidance and strategy practice, so modeling is key.

Kids working in pairs works best for beginners.

Hidden Pictures

In your plans for what to do after standardized testing, include a few hidden puzzles.

Print a few from the internet or complete a few online hidden picture puzzles with your students using a projector.

Readers’ Theaters

Readers’ theaters are one of the best activities to do after standardized testing because of the movement involved.

Reading, science, social studies, math – you can integrate any subject with a readers’ theater.

Thank You Notes

In addition to writing letters of appreciation, ask students write a simple thank you note to someone in the school community who has positively impacted them in a special way during the school year.

Purchase a small pack of thank you cards or have students make them. Show students some examples of thank you messages, and then have them write their own.

WebQuests

With all the technology available today, WebQuests feel a bit dated.

Yet they’re still very much effective for guiding students in completing research on a particular topic.

If you’ve never heard of a WebQuest, get information about them here. They’re fairly easy to implement and keep kids engaged.

Here are a list of WebQuest lessons to get you started. Tweak them to your liking.

Debates

Help students widen their perspectives through debates!

Debates promote student interaction and collaboration, plus they get kids thinking outside of the box.

If you don’t know what to do after standardized testing but know absolutely that you want something really challenging and thought-provoking, consider debates.

Projects

Turn a book or activity into a project.

After reading a novel, students can create a movie poster to persuade others to see a pretend movie version.

Want something more crafty?

Have students create a diorama related to a significant scene from a book.

Include social studies and science topics, too.

Student Portfolios

Students portfolios are extremely powerful in getting kids to reflect on their strengths and weaknesses while also showcasing their best work.  

Learners collect 5 to 15 artifacts from any subject and in any form to showcase.

They then take one of those tri-fold science boards and strategically place the artifacts.

Afterwards, students present their portfolios to peers from another class and/or parents.

Project-Based Learning

Project-based learning activities provide an opportunity for students to apply the skills/strategies they’ve learned throughout the school year.

These higher-order thinking activities promote teamwork along with critical thinking skills.

Games

Students work with a partner or small group to create a game teaching any skill or strategy they learned this school year.

Consider using the games with your new students the following school year.

Field Trips

Schedule a field trip or two to get kids outside of the four walls of the classroom. If you can’t take a field trip, bring the field trip to you!

Invite individuals to share activities, experiments, and projects with students.

Recipes

Cooking integrates math, science, and reading; it’s a win all around. Simple recipes for kids abound on Google.

Financial Literacy

Think financial education when planning what to do after standardized testing.

Making a budget, running a classroom economy, learning about simple taxes – all are fun activities that teach the basics of financial literacy.

Time Capsules

Students fill a shoebox with artifacts that they want to remember about the school year.

In a year or two, they open the box and reflect on the pieces contained in the box.

If you work in a school where the kids are not highly mobile, keep the shoe boxes somewhere in your classroom if space allows.

At the end of the following school year, give the boxes to your previous students’ current teachers for students to open.

Extensions of Lessons

Ever pay attention to those extension and challenge activities presented at the end of lessons within textbooks?

A lot of educators ignore those activities though they’re excellent exercises – challenging, hands-on, and higher-order thinking leveled.  Additionally, they tap into various learning styles.

Return to some of those chapters and have students work on a few of the problems in pairs or small groups.

Photo/Video Instructions

At the beginning of each school year, you review rules and procedures with students. Here’s a way to make it more visual and personal…

  • Divide current students into 2 groups: “appropriate” and “inappropriate”.
  • Give a rule or procedure (e.g. stand in line), and then have each group act out/show the respective way to do each.
  • Snap a photo of each action.
  • Continue doing this with other rules/procedures: organizing centers, eating in the cafeteria, playing fairly on the playground, etc.

Note: It may take a few days to take all of these photos since it’s best to take them in the proper settings.

  • After you’ve taken all photos, organize images into a PowerPoint, Google Presentation, and/or print them.

The following school year, present the PowerPoint to your new students showing them real examples of appropriate/inappropriate behaviors.

You could also create an anchor chart with the new students, labeling the appropriate and inappropriate action images via interactive writing.

Movie Day

Students need a day after testing to disconnect and zone out a little. Make it fun by adding Pajama Day to the mix, light snacks, and a bit of extra outside recess time.

This is a time to celebrate all of the hard work and efforts your students put forth in completing all of those states tests.

Character Traits Charades

Character traits charades reviews vocabulary and gets kids moving.

  • Give each student a character trait.
  • One by one, each student acts out his trait in front of the class. Peers guess.
  • Whoever guesses correctly acts out his word next. The game continues as such.

Character Traits Photos + Interactive Writing

  • Give each student a character trait.
  • He or she must make a face or complete an action that depicts that trait. Snap a picture of their pose.
  • After all have taken a snapshot, put the images on chart paper.
  • Then, during an interactive writing lesson, students take turns writing the character trait underneath each photo.
  • Save the anchor chart to use as a reference the following school year.

Same Routine

You can always keep things just about the same.

Add a BrainPop video, work outside, incorporate literacy centers, permit students to write in pen, etc.

A small change can make a big difference to a monotonous routine.

What to Do After Standardized Testing: Now You’ve Got Ideas

No more trying to figure out what to do after standardized testing. This list of activities covers you until the end of the school year.

Happy teaching and learning