Having watched my Chicago baseball teams choke their way right out of the playoffs, I couldn’t help but think about how pressure brings out the best and the worst in athletes, just like testing can bring out the best and the worst in students.
To combat this test-induced stress, more and more teachers are trying "brain gym" exercises. It seems that these movements optimize brain activity and relieve stress, helping students to learn better and perform to the best of their abilities.
Check out this link for a list of exercises and instruction to try in your classroom: http://rossa.blogs.com/weblog/files/brain_break_activity_book.pdf OR watch it in action with this local news story (forgive the low production value - best I could find).
Obviously, this is just one way to relieve students' stress.
How do you help your students relieve stress and test anxiety? Share your techniques in the comments section.