Does everyone use Testbase? I’m in Year 6, and with SATs beginning on May 14th, my thoughts are turning more and more to the tests.

Testbase, for those who don’t yet use it, is a CD-ROM containing a searchable database of all past questions from the KS1 and KS2 tests. It also contains all questions from the QCA optional tests. I think it’s a must for every primary class, but in particular for junior teachers.

The program, which can be ordered from www.testbase.co.uk, consists of three units – English, Maths and Science. It allows teachers to find questions by year group objective, by topic, sub-topic, level, year of question, and pretty much anything else. These questions can then be projected directly onto the now ubiquitous interactive whiteboard, or exported to a Word file for printing.

Testbase is a major timesaver. It’s great for compiling questions, but I think its application is wider. When I’m planning, I like to look up an objective on Testbase and make sure that my interpretation of it matches that of the QCA. Often, it’s all too easy to follow a textbook or your own ideas and find only later that what you asked the kids to do and what they’re tested on are two different things.

The best thing about Testbase is that even if you’ve never heard of it, you’ve probably already got it. Schools are sent copies of the CD-ROM every year. All you need to do is pay the QCA and get the licence codes.

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