Is there anything that can make today's educational testing environment more palatable? Worldwide, the educational environment is littered with testing. Formative testing, standardized testing, observations, evaluations and let's not forget the "incentives" to do well. The biggest incentive being offered that I'm aware of is that if your students do well, you get to keep your job. Ah, don't get me started.
There are lots of pep rallies being held to "pump" students up for the big test. There are also incentives such as snacks, "magic," candy bars, parties, colored pencils, rubber bracelets and other items with the purpose of tricking, er... I mean motivating, students to study and feel confident (and basically, not throw up). There are also oodles of videos created by students and teachers. Of all the videos I've seen, there is one video, created by teacher Nesty Nunez, that is done especially well, and includes teachers and students from a local elementary school here in Palm Beach County, FL.
Enjoy, and may you forever be READY for all of life's tests!