What is the NWEA MAP Test for Kindergarten?

The MAP Kindergarten exam is a computerized and untimed test that assesses children’s abilities in math and reading. It is usually administered three times a year: around September, February, and June, in order to reflect the child’s progress.

The test considers that not all children in this age group know how to read yet, so the questions are all recorded and your child will be able to use headphones and listen to them. Additionally, pictures are widely used throughout the test, to make it more accessible and pleasant for kindergarten children.

The MAP is designed as an adaptive test, meaning that the difficulty level of each question is dependent on whether the child has answered the preceding question correctly.

Preparing for the MAP Kindergarten Test will give your child a better understanding of the test, what questions to expect, and how to answer them. It will also contribute to a far more accurate picture of your child's academic potential and ability to grow and excel in his or her school studies.

MAP Kindergarten Test Scores

The NWEA MAP Growth scoring system is based on the Rasch unIT (RIT) scale. This scale provides a grade-independent score, which demonstrates the child's ability and knowledge on the various subjects that the test measures.

Every question on the test has an RIT value that reflects the question's complexity. The final RIT score given to the child represents the specific complexity level in which he or she is predicted to answer approximately 50% of the questions correctly. In addition to a general RIT score, the child will also receive separate RIT scores for each section of the MAP test, which enables them to spot their strengths and weaknesses.

According to the 2020 NWEA MAP Kindergarten norms, the mean RIT score was 145 for the reading section, and 148 for the math section. 

Visit TestPrep-Online’s MAP scores page to find the most updated information on MAP Kindergarten scores, percentiles, averages, and more.

MAP Kindergarten Math Section

The math section of the MAP Kindergarten test consists of approximately 43 questions from various mathematical topics:

  • Computation and Problem Solving – calculations with basic operations and applying properties of computation to solve mathematical word problems.
  • Number Sense – applying concepts of identifying, counting, comparing and ordering numbers.
  • Measurement – understanding concepts of different measures such as length, area, time, temperature, etc.
  • Geometry – applying geometric concepts, including 2-D and 3-D figure identification and classification, symmetry, and congruence.
  • Statistics and Probability – interpretation of simple graphs of different types, determining the likelihood of simple events to happen.
  • Algebra – applying algebraic concepts such as equivalence, patterns and series, and the properties and relationships of operations.

We know that understanding mathematical concepts might be difficult for 5-year-old kids, so we highly recommend using physical elements to help your child. For instance, counting with your fingers or objects like pencils or marbles instead of calculating, or explaining geometrical shapes by comparing them to objects from everyday life.

 Math Sample Questions:

MAP Kindergarten Sample Question 1: Math

Jane had 6 flowers in her garden. She planted 3 more flowers.
How many flowers does Jane have in her garden now?
You can use the pictures to help you solve the problem:

MAP Test Kindergarten Math Sample Question





 
Answer & Explanation|

 

MAP Kindergarten Sample Question 2: Math

What is the name of the following shape? 

MAP Test Practice for Kindergarten




 
Answer & Explanation|

   

The correct answer is cylinder.
A cylinder is a 3D shape that has 2 identical flat ends that are circles or ellipses, and one curved side, as in the picture.
Answer A is incorrect because a cube has 6 squared equal-size sides.
Answer B is incorrect because a pyramid has 3 or 4 triangle sides, a square or a triangle at one end, and a point at the other end.
Answer C is incorrect because a cone has a circle at one end, a point on the other end, and a curved side.

 

MAP Kindergarten Reading Section

The reading section of the MAP Kindergarten consists of approximately 43 questions from various topics:

  • Phonology and Phonics – distinguishing between different sounds, understanding concepts such as vowels and consonants, syllables, and rhyming words.
  • Concepts of Print – applying concepts such as the hierarchy between letters, words and sentences, books’ characteristics and structure, and the alphabetic order.
  • Word Structure and Meaning – applying concepts such as prefixes and affixes, inferring words' meaning from the context, synonyms and antonyms, and categorization of words.
  • Comprehension – listening and reading comprehension, distinguishing between different types of texts, identifying stories' characteristics such as setting, characters, and problems.
  • Writing – understanding the correct usage of capitalization, punctuation, spelling, verb tenses, and distinguishing between different parts of speech.

Remember – all the questions are recorded, so there is no need to panic if your child does not know how to read yet and there are questions with more complicated wording. He or she will be able to listen again as many times as needed. You can help your child practice their listening comprehension by reading them stories and asking them questions.

Reading Sample Questions:

MAP Kindergarten Sample Question 3: Reading

Read the following sentence:

What is the name of your teacher

What sign should come at the end of the sentence?





 
Answer & Explanation|

 

MAP Kindergarten Sample Question 4: Reading

In which answer are the two words synonyms?





 
Answer & Explanation|

 

Tips for Helping your Child Ace the MAP Kindergarten Test

  • Plan out deadlines and priorities.  Make a study plan and prioritize topics according to your child's strengths and weaknesses. Our prep pack has section-specific quizzes and practice tests, so you and your child can easily focus on one skill at a time if necessary.
  • Incorporate fun.  It is likely that your child will lose focus here and there. Studying is not easy- especially for a child in kindergarten! Therefore, we recommend adding some fun activities into the prepping mix. Examples include one-on-one baking sessions for mathematical concepts, or story time and movie nights for strengthening vocabulary.
  • Keep your child healthy and active.  Remember: your child will not be able to learn without the right tools, and these include good physical and mental health. Make sure your child gets plenty of sleep, eats healthy food, and is given sufficient time to play and have fun. You will undoubtedly see the benefits.
  • Take regular breaks during study sessions.  Focusing for long periods of time is never easy. Give your child a chance to process new information by incorporating small breaks every so often.
  • No pressure! It is easy to get stressed out when a test like this is coming up. However, pressuring your child to study will intimidate them, and may even lead to test performance anxiety. Instead, try to make light of the test, and remind your child that he or she is great no matter what happens.

MAP Testing Practice for Kindergarten

Get more MAP Kindergarten sample questions with TestPrep-Online’s MAP Kindergarten Practice Pack!

Similarly to the test, our pack is divided into a math section and a reading section. On each section you can find six quizzes with increasing difficulty levels and a full practice test. The full practice tests simulate the real test very well, so your child gets a chance to practice in similar conditions and to get to know the test well before taking it. The quizzes offer many questions for extra practice that can help your child strengthen their weaknesses and get the best preparation for the test.

Our practice pack does not have the same adaptive function as in the real test, but it does provide questions from a wide range of difficulty levels, topics and questions styles. Additionally, each question and answer is coupled with detailed explanations and solving tips to give your child the edge.

Despite being a standardized test, a child can—and should—prepare for the MAP test beforehand, since MAP testing scores can be a deciding factor for placement in either regular or gifted classes. To help you prepare, TestPrep-Online will soon offer a full MAP Kindergarten test practice pack.

FAQ’s

What is a good MAP score for kindergarten?

There is no such thing as a good MAP score for kindergarten, as different schools and programs have different standards. In 2020, the average math score was around 145, and the average reading score was around 148.

What is a gifted MAP score for kindergarten?

In many gifted programs a child must be in the 95th percentile on the math or reading assessments to be identified as gifted. In 2020, the 95th percentile math score was around 170, and the 95th percentile reading score was around 165.

 

 

 

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