Yaya wrote her SAT last week. The night before her exam, she came to me and asked “Can I sleep with you?”
“Sure” I said.
I watched her print her admissions ticket, pack her pencil case etc before she came and laid down next to me. “Mom, I am scared” She said
“I know exactly how you feel” I replied ” And I told her about this letter a teacher in US wrote
“The people who create these tests and score them do not know each student the way I do, the way I hope to, and certainly not the way the families do.
“They do not know that some of my students speak two languages or more. They do not know that they can play a musical instrument or that they can dance or paint a picture. Doesn’t that matter more? They do not know that they are someone who friends can count on to be there for them or that the sound of their laughter can brighten the dreariest day in the homes they live in and in my classroom.
“Those who design the tests do not know that some of my students have travelled to a really neat place and come back alive with stories or that they even know how to tell a great story and bubble over with excitement to share!” ( Kimberly Horst)
I told her, “as far as I am concerned, you are a great student. You speak three languages fluently, you are a talented artist and a good basket ball player, you are a wonderful daughter and a big sister for your brother and sister, Yes the test score will determine your college admission, but that is only a tiny part of your life, there is much more to life than an SAT score, so you go there and give your best shot, whatever has to happen, will happen”
I don’t believe in last minute studying ( biggest irony, when I only studied the very last second) So we went to bed early. On the day of the exam, she told me ” Mom, I think I want to join the circus”
“That is fantastic” I told her,” you are naturally talented as a clown, you don’t even have to pretend to fall, you just need to walk on absolutely flat surface and you still will trip and fall” ( Yaya is a walking disaster!)
Her brother was awake and he showed her some meme about falling down and they laughed.
I bought all of Yaya’s favourite chocolates the night before, so she had Cadbury’s chocolate for breakfast. ( When she is stressed, she won’t eat anything)
As we left her brother hugged her and told her ” Go get them tiger”
Her test center was an hour’s drive from my home. Every few minutes Yaya said ” Mom, I am scared, I don’t want to do this, I want to join the circus” And I replied the same standard answer. ” You will be fine , it is just a test and remember you got high distinction for ICAS maths without even trying to do the test” ( I forced all my children to do all the ICAS and other similar tests, to prepare them for this moment, and Yaya wasn’t very happy..so instead of actually doing the test, she guessed all the answer for her grade 7 ICAS maths and was shocked to get the high distinction)
She wrote the test, for her English essay she created fictional scenarios to suit her essay. Maths she didn’t know few of the questions.
First part of SAT is out of the way.
But I still worry.. when she goes to Uni, how will she cope on her own? Who will buy her chocolates? Who will make her laugh, so she won’t be stressed? ( yes I know, I survived my uni days, but still it is my job to worry about my children )