The Literacy Teacher's Playbook

Welcome Back!  Thanks for joining me again this week to talk more about how to actually use the assessments that you are doing in your room.  I am all about getting more bang for my buck, so I am really enjoying that this book allows me think about what I am already doing and using that to better inform my instruction.  

This week we will continue to work our way through chapter 2 - which was SUPER long, so I split it into two sections.  We will talk about other assessments you may use and how you can TRULY use that data!

Running Records
Nothing in this section was a OMG moment for me.  However, it was a reminder that I need to do more of this - especially for my more emerging readers.  I need to be able to figure out how they are word solving - Does it look right?  Does it make sense?  Does it sound right?  When do you all do your running records? And how often?  I want to make a plan - that way I am more likely to stick to it!

Going to be honest here - Not sure that I am going to be looking at transcripts of my student's talking to each other.  However, I do think that I would be able to use some of the ideals listed in this chapter and use them while I am listening in on students read and talk in partnerships.  

Writing: Narrative
We use the Lucy Calkins revised writing program and the corresponding rubrics - However, I think I like these "look fors" better.  They are clearer and more to the point.  More specifically, I feel like they are written for a typical first grader - not the strongest student.  

Here is a peek of her suggestions for structure - from page 76.

In addition to focus, she also has sections on elaboration, focus, and conventions.  

One other note - she suggests only looking at writing completed in the past 2-3 weeks, so you may not be able to look at all genres of writing at one time.  This is because student's writing changes as they learn, so you want the needs assessment to be current. 

Writing: Engagement
Remember a few weeks ago, when I was SO excited about the engagement inventory?  Now we can talk a little about how to analyze it.  Look at the time on task, but also the volume of writing.  Try to see if the student has a process - is the child using any/all of the step in the writing process?  Once these questions have been answered, you can plan next steps for the kids!

Writing: Informative
This section is similar to the narrative section focusing on focus, structure, and elaboration. 

Take a peek at the elaboration section. 

We have always taught informational text writing in our own way - an animal research project, but this year we will be changing gears to follow Lucy's plan.  I am hoping that I will enjoy those writing lessons as much!

Writing: Opinion
I don't know about you, but opinion writing in first grade was new to me two years ago and while I have made HUGE gains in my teaching of opinion writing, I still sometimes struggle with getting kids to add details to their reasons.  

Again, the charts for opinion writing include focus, structure, elaboration, and conventions.  

Take a peek at the elaboration chart.

Reminding myself of the "ideal" is always helpful!  Maybe I am sometimes expecting too much!! :)  They are only 6 and 7.  

Thanks for joining us again this week!  Please don't forget to enter our Rafflecopter Giveaway - You have 2 AMAZING teacher-authors to shop from - WINNER's CHOICE from both - WOO HOO!!

Also, keep on hopping - There are a bunch of other teachers who are excited to share with you their thoughts on this chapter!

See you next week!
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