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Rainier Ehrhardt/Staff
Kirby Frazier, a tree foreman from Augusta Public Works, cuts branches after a large tree fell Monday at the intersection of Broad and 13th streets and blocked several lanes of traffic.


With schools beginning across the region, here are some tips to help your child take tests.


- Talk with your child about testing. It's helpful for children to understand why schools give tests.

- Tell your child that occasionally, he will take "standardized" tests. Explain that these tests use the same standards to measure pupil performance across the state or even across the country.

- Encourage your child. Praise her for the things that she does well. If your child feels good about herself, she will do her best on a test.

- Meet with your child's teacher as often as possible to discuss his progress.

- Provide a quiet, comfortable place for studying at home and make sure that your child is well rested on school days and especially on the day of a test.

- Don't get upset because of a single test score. Many things can influence how your child does on a test.

Source: U.S. Department of Education


COMMUNITY OPEN HOUSE: 9 a.m. to noon and 4-6 p.m., University of South Carolina Aiken, Room 122, Business and Education Building, 471 University Parkway, Aiken; held by USC Aiken Office of Continuing Education; booths from Gregg-Graniteville Library, Pacer Athletics, the Ruth Patrick Science Education Center, Academy of Lifelong Learning, Wellness Center, SeniorNet, Etherredge Center; (803) 641-3587

AARP DEFENSIVE DRIVING CLASS: 1-5 p.m. Tuesday and Wednesday; Windham House, 100 Council Road, Aiken; course specially designed for drivers 50 and older as a refresher course; $10; registration required; (803) 642-8809

ENGLISH AS A SECOND LANGUAGE CLASSES: 6-8 p.m., Augusta Headquarters Library, 902 Greene St.; one-on-one teaching and class instruction; register at the circulation desk or call (706) 821-2600, ext. 3

SPIRITUALITY & RELIGIONS GROUP: 7 p.m., Borders Books, Music & Cafe, 257 Robert C. Daniel Jr. Parkway; (706) 737-6962

BREAST CANCER SURVIVOR EXERCISE: 6-7 p.m., Walton Rehabilitation Hospital; (706) 823-5294

NORTH AUGUSTA NETWORKERS: 11:30 a.m., North Augusta Community Center, 495 Brookside Ave.; (803) 442-3827


MEMBERSHIP DRIVE FOR THE NAVY LEAGUE OF AIKEN/AUGUSTA: 5:30 p.m., Palmetto Room at Woodside Plantation Country Club, 1000 Woodside Plantation Drive, Aiken; with guest speaker retired U.S. Navy Vice Admiral John Shkor; cash bar and hors d'oeuvres; no charge but reservations required; (803) 652-8105

THE BRILLIANT INVENTIONS: 10 p.m., The Mission, 1157 Broad St.; (706) 722-1233

SUN DOMINGO: Wild Wing Cafe, 3035 Washington Road; (706) 364-9453,

JAMIE JONES: Joe's Underground, 144 Eighth St.; (706) 724-9457

BROTHERS AND SISTERS MEETINGS: 5-6:30 p.m., Aiken County Recreation Center, Graniteville; for boys and girls ages 5 to 18; programs offer tutoring, mentoring, cultural and recreational activities, and field trips; (803) 663-6142

AMERICAN SIGN LANGUAGE CLASSES: 6 p.m., Diamond Lakes Branch Library, 101 Diamond Lakes Way; conducted by Augusta American Sign Language Group; (706) 796-8016;