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This test was taken on Computer.
Study: I used the Cliff's study guide and an REA study guide, plus the Region 10 guide. Each resource had practice exams, which were not that similar to the test questions -- interesting! I also took a review through region 10. All this information was helpful, but could have prepared me better if it was more to the point. I passed well, but didn't feel that way coming out. I felt like much of the important areas I was sure I should know were not on the exam. Some terminology that I studied in the ELAR areas were different on the questions and I had to interpret that. The REA guide contained many typos and some inerrant information. I think if you concentrated on ELAR you would pass. The math portion was minute compared to what I studied and did not ask anything directly pertaining to what or how you would teach an EC-4th grader math concepts. No Texas history was on the test. Much was subjective and kind of "out there"!
Test: KNOW YOUR ELAR!!!
Study: I used the TExES 101 Generalist EC-4 by Luis A. Rosado. This worked for all test sections except for English Language arts. You really have to study for that one if you don't practice the concepts on a daily basis. Allother areas were pretty simple.
Test: It was harder than I expected since I took the technology applications EC-12 and it was easier because I was use to the concepts. Prepare by studying the English Language Arts and Reading section. The rest is stuff we learned in elementary if you can remember it. Just review the other subject areas.
Study: At first I used the XAMonline EC-4 book, it had so many misprints, spelling mistakes and grammatical errors I was very surprised a professional company would put that out like that. However, it wasn't a complete waste of time it did contain some good info in it that was helpful. The practice test ended giving me the wrong answers on some so that was just one more frustrating thing. I switched to the REA Generalist EC-4 and MUCH better, it put a lot of everything into simpler terms and was easier to understand. I also studied the Prep Manual from the texes website and many practice tests. Study the TEKS, Study the TEKS, Study the TEKS!!!!
Test: A ton of development! Most of my test was ALL ELA & R. I had zero questions on Texas History, probably two questions on Health/Phys Ed and around 15 questions on Science a few math. The rest ELA & R and the TEKS (read thoroughly).
Study, Study, Study - over prepare yourself and you'll be just fine.
Study: Janice Nath's book, "the red one" everybody suggested. Highly recommend! Also utilized the state's free information downloaded from their website.
Test: I would literally tell someone to study 99% of the time on the teaching aspects of every subject. Not necessarily on the subject itself. I can count two actual math problems. Two science problems. One art. Two health. And so on. The rest were more in the format of "how would you best help your kids learn math in this scenario." I would STRONGLY suggest skimming a PPR study guide before taking this test. With me having no prior teaching experience, I can honestly say I would not have passed my version of this exam if I hadn't read the entire PPR study guide first. The exam is testing your TEACHING KNOWLEDGE more than your actual book smarts. Can't stress that enough.
Spent three hours taking the exam, but that includes going over the whole thing for the questions I marked to double check and also spending another 45 minutes going over every question again to make sure I answered correctly. I passed with a very high grade which surprised me, given my lack of teaching experience. I can't stress enough how much this exam relys on instructional methods over any type of facts and figures. Study those for about 5 hours total and devote the rest of your 95 hours to studying PPR and you'll be fine.
I studied 1-2 hours a day and 5 hours on Saturdays for seven weeks.
Study: I used the Ultimate Guide to EC-4 Generalist TExES (by Bauer and Scott) as well as a TExES Guide to EC-4 by Cliff Notes (found this one at Half Price Books, 2006 edition).
Studied both of these guides and made flashcards on important points. The Preparation Manual on the ETS website was not helpful at all so I didn't really use it (although I did look through it).
Definitely concentrate on ELA since it's 40% of the exam--not so much specific information like genres or choral reading, but on concepts like alphabetic principle and various assessment procedures.
The actual test was SO much harder than I thought it would be--everything I didn't expect and almost nothing I did. HOWEVER, I did pass.
The frustrating thing was that every guide you read gives you all sorts of statistical information, dates and people for history and formulas for math and there were MAYBE a handful of questions where you actually use any of that stuff. I felt like my head was full of "useless" facts (not useless in the long run, obviously, but I'm talking test-purposes). For example, instead of knowing what year Thomas Edison was born or what he invented, you were given a speech that TE had given and were asked to pick out the main idea. Stuff like that--that's not an exact test question, but it's along those lines.
Like I said, I did much better than I'd expected. Prepare yourself to be mentally exhausted when you get out. They give you 5 hours to take the test and I finished in just under 3. I suggest stopping every 20 questions or so to close your eyes and "regroup" because it's really an overwhelming experience.
Again, I know there's different versions of the test and some are more difficult than others, but there were very few applied math skills on the test. My suggestion for math is to take each answer and plug it into the question to see if it's true.
Study: I used the Nath & Ramsey book, the official website, and Rosado book. I read the chapters and did all the practice test. I had been spending 6-10 hours a week studying for about a month and a half. The weekend before the test I made notes to review. That seems to help actually comprehend all the material better. I should have done this a lot earlier.
Test: The test was about was I expected. Study Study Study reading. Know the vocabulary and how it applies within each competency.
I passed the first time.
Study: XAMOnline EC-4 Generalist 101
ETS Prep Manual from Website
Test: The XAMonline was a total waste of money except for the English Language arts portion(this section is mostly pedagogy). Study that portion if you already have the book. Otherwise the ETS Prep Manual was best. Take the ETS prep test that is at the end of the PDF Prep Manual!!! It is very helpful! The test is mostly pedagogy with very few content questions. If you follow these steps you will not be surprised when you go in to take the test and could be very well prepared.
Study: I purchased the Janice Nath and John Ramsey, Preparing for the Texas PrK-4 Teacher Certification study guide. Overall, I liked the book and read the entire book cover to cover. There were a couple of questions on the exam that were not even mentioned in this study guide, and that disappointed me. I thought the Language Arts section of the guide was very extensive but authors could have gone further into math concepts and Texas history. I also read what several other past test takers posted on this site to see what there experience was. I believe the exam is not repetitious and the questions are randomized. What one poster said was on his/her test was different than what was on my test. I understand they must do this for the integrity of the exam.
Test: Overall the exam was difficult. Like most people mentioned, focus on the Language Arts and reading. Try not to memorize all the vocabulary, but learn how to apply the knowledge. This is what was covered on my exam (may not be covered on yours) but will give you a general idea of what to possibly focus on: segmentation, syntax, syllable division, blending, literacy dev. stages, consonant digraph, consonant blend, reading fluency, word analysis, literal inferential and evaluative comprehension, stages of spelling,couple questions of PreK Reading development, genres, applying Bloom's taxonomy, writing conventions.
Math: reading of graphs, fractions, ratios,
Social Studies: mostly Texas history, civil war
Science: weather question, producers, herbivore, omnivore and carnivore what happens when one is taken out of the equation.
Art/Music: very little.
P.E. Several questions, try to review this section.
*You are allowed to take a 15 min. break if needed or go to the bathroom. No drinks or food allowed. Consider eating something right before the test such as a protein bar so your blood sugar doesn't get low. They give you the option of wearing ear plugs (use them!) you may get distracted by the people walking in and out. The door made a squeaking sound every time it was opened and closed. Also, dress in layers. It was hot in there when I took the test, but I had the option on taking off a layer. Good luck!
Study: Preparing for the Texas PreK-4 Teacher Certification (HIGHLY RECOMMENDED)by Janice L. Nath, Texes Generalist EC-4 by CliffsTestPrep, took the Generalist prep course from Region 4, and online websites.
I would not study differently. I feel that the materials I used were all I need. As a matter of fact, if I had only the Nath book, I would have still passed the test. That book was the best book for me and I highly recommend it to anyone.
Test: Some questions were easy and some were hard. Math was harder for me but I still did fine. Surprisingly, the test was not as hard as I thought it would be. However, there was a lot of reading throughout the test. Even the answer choices were long. Some answer choices were as long as the question stem itself! I wished I had taken the paper version because all the reading I had to do gave me a headache!
Anyway, here is my tip! You can never study too much for the exam. The more you study, the better you will do and the earlier you study, the better you will do. Also, there is a lot of reading, so if you can take the paper based I would recommend it. It's easier on the eyes. When you take the test, try to focus on the grade level of the test and the BEST solution for that grade level. Some answer choices had two possible solutions but I had to think of the grade level and the objective and that helped me find the correct answer. Here are some topics to study for that were on the test itself... Earth science such as placement of planets and one question required you to know what the plants consisted of(their make up), regions of the world in social studies as well as European colonization, consentrate highly on phonemic and phonological awareness. There were lots of intructional strategy questions on each subject area so consentrate on how you would teach them. There were a few math problems you will have to solve and some reading of graphs. There were instructional strategies on science experiments, one question of science safety in the lab, and a couple on life science. Focus on instructional strategies in social studies as well and build up some knowledge in music, art, and physical education, especially in PE. There was one PE question based on termonolgy but most of the questions were based on how you would go about teaching them. Good Luck!
Study: I bought the yellow book from the Texas Teachers office. It was 37.00. I also studied the practice exam from the texes website.
Test: It was harder than I expected. The ELA section was the hardest. The other subjects were not as hard. I suggest you take a look at the free online practice test on the texes website.
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