Test Preparation Lesson Plan: Self-Assessment and Reflection

Submitted by: Angela Watson

Grade Levels: 3-5, 6-8, 9-12

In this lesson plan, which is adaptable for grades 3-12, students use BrainPOP resources for test preparation, reflecting on their progress and areas of strength and weakness. Students then review key skills and concepts through independent and collaborative activities.

Lesson Plan Common Core State Standards Alignments

Students will:

  1. Reflect on their progress and areas of strength and weakness.
  2. Review key skills and concepts.


  • Internet access for BrainPOP and Interactive whiteboard/LCD projector OR Mobile devices with the BrainPOP app installed


This lesson can be used in preparation for standardized testing or even unit tests in various subject areas. Preview the lesson and determine how you can adapt it for your class and differentiate for student needs. If your students have mobile devices, you may want to teach them in advance how to download the BrainPOP app and create their individual login information. You can also show any of the related movie topics listed at the top of the page to help prepare students for completing the activities.

Lesson Procedure:

  1. Have students work in groups to list some of the skills/concepts they think will be covered on the upcoming test. Refer them to practice tests they have taken, textbooks, and other materials. Group members may have the same answers, but should each keep their own record of skills, either on paper or on a computer/mobile device.
  2. Ask volunteers to share their group's responses. Record them on the board, chart paper, Google Doc, etc. Students should update their personal lists, crossing out/deleting items and adding as necessary. Model appropriate vocabulary for students (for example, if the mention determining how two things are the same and how they are different, remind students that we call that "comparing and contrasting.")
  3. Have students circle 5-10 skills they personally would like to improve on. You may want to meet individually with students to review their previous testing data and talk about strengths/weaknesses.
  4. Ask students to locate corresponding BrainPOP movies for the skills they identified. You may want to model this and demonstrate how to navigate through subject area units. Students can record the name of the movie or copy and paste the URL to the list they've created on their computer/mobile device.
  5. Tell students that over the coming days, they will be given time (either in class, at home, or both) to explore the movies on the skills they need practice with. They should watch each movie on a computer or on the mobile device with the app and then take the quiz. If they take it on the computer, they should record their scores. If they take it using the app, their scores will be automatically calculated, as each student can create an individual login.
  6. Allow students to explore the movies and quizzes in any order they choose. Facilitate discussions around what they are learning and talk about their progress.
  7. Invite students to reflect on the activity and their progress. Was this a useful way to improve their understanding of key concepts? What else could they do to prepare for the test? How could they apply their skills to real-life situations?

Extension Activity:

You may want to re-use this lesson plan throughout the school year for different subject area assessments. Encourage students to explore the movies and quizzes on their own, and check out topics that are relevant to their interests (including those topics that are not covered on a test.)
  • danabrainpop

    This is a good spotlight movie right now, at the New Year, to encourage students to look at what they manage well and not so well–gets us all to think about what we can change to reduce stress. What are students saying stresses them out?