NECAP Science

NECAP Science [Grade 5 only]

The NECAP Science assessment takes place in late spring. Students in grade 4 take part in the NECAP Science Assessment.


The spring NECAP Science Assessment is designed to measure your child’s progress in meeting the basic Science Curriculum Targets that are highlighted within New Hampshire’s Grade Span Expectations, or GSEs. The GSEs define the knowledge and skills a student should have mastered in science by the end of grade spans K-4, 5-8 and 9-11.

Test Sessions

The NECAP Science test, given at end of each of these grade spans, will be composed of three (3) test sessions:

    • Sessions 1 and 2 will feature multiple choice and constructed response items with the science domains clustered (all Life Science questions will be together; all Earth Space Science questions will be together; and all Physical Science questions will be together). Approximately 90 minutes will be given for Session One and for Session Two (this includes additional time for students to answer, if needed).
    • Session 3 will be an Inquiry Task. At grade 4, this will involve cooperative work with hands-on materials. (Approximately 120 minutes will be given at grade 4 for session 3.)


Results are posted at the beginning of the following year. These are sent home to parents.


Parents Can Help

In every assessment, scores are only as meaningful as the effort students put into the tests. Encourage your child to take the tests seriously and to give his or her best effort. You can best help your child prepare for the assessment by making sure that she or he is well rested on the days the tests will be given. And, as with every day, it is critical that students have a good breakfast before heading off to school.

Small motivational ideas also help to highlight the importance of the test without adding any undue pressure to students. Some ideas can be found in the section below.

[Read more about standardized test preparation]

How the School Community Helps

In an effort to support grades 3, 4 and 5 students to "ROCK the NECAP" each class taking part in the NECAP test was adopted by a younger class in the school.

The idea behind this initiative is to have younger classes get “involved” with the test by coming up with motivational ideas for older classes. Staff members were also encouraged to adopt a class for testing as well.

The motivational ideas were kept low key but encouraging. Some of the motivations included;

    1. Staff members adopt classes and write them encouraging notes throughout the days of testing students respond positively.
    2. One teacher wrote "Smarties know how to prepare for a test" and made up little cards to give them with a pack of smarties.
    3. Another teacher did a test taking survival kit with pencils, erasers, highlighters, peppermints, gum etc for each student to have during the week of testing.
    4. Other test-day strategies: some test-takers chewed gum, others had Peppermint candy because of its reputation for aiding concentration and mental clarity.
    5. Students taking the test were given good luck and "thinking of you" cards. Class cards are always well received.
    6. Some of the students met each other. This is very powerful. Especially when younger children provide the test takers with a positive comment or note.


Thank you for supporting your child and our school during the testing period. Please call us if have any questions.