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2022 Grant Winners

Orlandria Wilson

All 2022 Grant Winners

Being back from online learning posed a new set of challenges that educators didn’t expect. Students were agitated, lacked communication skills and were anxious about being back in a school setting. Most of Orlandria Wilson’s students had not been back in school since elementary school. This created the challenge of getting students ready for state tests. She knew that students already felt anxious because this is a high stakes test, but everything was intensified once COVID hit. She wanted to find a way to ensure that her students felt safe and at ease during these high stress times.

So, she started teaching them test-taking strategies. In addition to deep breathing exercises, she taught them how to do brain dumps, how to use the process of elimination and how to use context clues to figure out word meanings. She would remind students during tests that if they got overwhelmed or frustrated to take a two-minute break, put their heads down and practice their belly breathing. As they continued doing this throughout the year, she saw not only improvements in their test scores, but noticed how they would use these skills when faced with social issues such as bullying or social anxiety. Students would remind each other to take a brain break or put their heads down. She wanted to teach them a different way to combat test anxiety, but in the end also taught them a life skill on how to gather themselves before acting out.

Orlandria Wilson
Orlandria Wilson
Texas - Fort Bend Independent School District
Dulles Middle School