Blog

  • Interventions, instruction, and progress monitoring — oh my!

    Teacher and student

    Plan your reading assessment activities in less time than your costume

    Fall is officially here, accompanied by cooler weather, football games, apple picking, pumpkin carving, hay rides, and all of the thrills — and chills — of Halloween. Does your school allow costumes for Halloween? Are you dreading the veins-full-of-sugar Friday after? (We all are!) No matter what frights your students have in store for you this month, you can rest easy knowing that the DRA3 Reading Assessment calendar will keep you on track with your students’ literacy support.

    What’s on the calendar for October?

    One of the most important tasks in any school year is discovering each student’s literacy strengths and weaknesses. Identifying where they might need a little help, and how you can utilize their strengths to augment that support will help them make the most of their educational time. We have put together a reading assessment calendar to help you stay on track throughout the year, and to provide you with helpful tools to enhance your reading curriculum. October’s activities are crucial to your students’ reading success, and will set you on the path to discovering — and fostering — the lifelong reader in each of them!

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  • Early childhood development and the 10 indicators of risk

    Now that you’ve watched Gloria Maccow’s video answering the five basic questions about early childhood development, you might be wondering how you can identify the children in your care who may need extra support. HeadStart has provided an Early Learning Outcomes Framework (HSELOF) which presents five broad areas of early learning — central domains — which reflect research-based expectations for learning and development. The framework emphasizes the key skills, behaviors, and knowledge that programs must foster in children ages birth to 5 to help them be successful in school and life:

    • Cognition
    • Language and literacy
    • Approaches to learning
    • Social and emotional development
    • Perception, motor, and physical development

    There are some well-known indicators for identifying children who may be at risk or need extra support.

    The 10 indicators of risk:

    1. Difficulties following directions or routines
    2. Clumsy (gross and/or fine motor skills)
    3. Difficulties interacting with peers
    4. Talked late compared to peers
    5. Slow vocabulary growth
    6. Extremely restless and easily distracted
    7. Poor articulation
    8. Difficulty naming known objects quickly
    9. Poor phonological awareness skills
    10. Poor letter-naming skills/math skills

    While some of these are typical of any young child, none should be discounted, and further screening is recommended. Using a tool that aligns with the HeadStart Framework is important to ensure you are measuring a child’s progress against a well-known and respected standard.

    Early Screening Inventory, Third Edition (ESI-3) aligns with HeadStart, and can quickly identify where they may need additional support in or outside of the classroom, with reporting that can be shared with parents.

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