Blog

  • Headed toward the deep end of assessment season?

    Laptop with DRA3 on Screen

    We’ve got the perfect life jacket for you!

    You’ve finally gotten your classroom back to some semblance of a learning environment and having turned the calendar to February you’ve realized that you’re now headed directly into the busiest time of year — spring assessments and conferences! Are you prepared for everything you need to prepare for? Are your students? What do you need to do in order to make sure you are all ready for what lies ahead? What adjustments do you need to make to ensure that your students are meeting end-of-year goals?

    If you’re feeling like you’re treading water, we’ve got you covered! DRA3’s reading skills assessment calendar was designed to help buoy you through these challenging times!

    What’s on the calendar this month?

    • Continue using progress monitoring with identified students.
    • Administer the Word Analysis to other first through third grade students who are reading below established oral reading mid-year benchmark levels.
    • Prepare for and conduct mid-year Parent/Teacher conferences using all appropriate DRA3 assessments and materials.
    • Model, teach, and support areas in need of instruction.

    What’s on the calendar for the rest of the school year?

    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. December’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!

    Download the calendar  

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  • The long winter break is over. Let’s get your students back on track!

    Student with speech bubble with teacher looking at laptop screen

    Well, the excitement from the holidays has passed, break is officially over, and it’s time to get back to learning... but how best to get your students back in the swing of things and on track to meeting end-of-year goals? Mid-year assessments are an excellent way to guide your classroom back to your typical learning environment while checking on their progress since fall. You can use the data provided by these assessments to help guide decisions and tailor each student’s instruction to their current level of ability.

    What’s on the January to-do list?

    • Follow your District Assessment calendar for mid-year assessments.
    • Re-administer the Word Analysis with students who were previously assessed in the fall.
    • Use the updated class profile to help plan specific teaching/learning activities in each area of instructional need.

    What’s on the calendar for the rest of the school year?

    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. December’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!

    Download the calendar  

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  • Making the turn into 2020

    Laptop displaying DRA3 Online report for Oral Reading Summary

    Can you believe we are here, talking about mid-year progress... already?? Fall is flashing by as quickly as summer did, and before we know it, colorful lights will be surrounding our windows, houses, and trees! Our bright little learners are bursting with excitement for the holiday season, and while it may seem like school is winding down for this calendar year, checking their mid-year reading skills progress is a fantastic way to maximize learning when school resumes after winter break!

    December to-dos:

    1. Continue using Progress monitoring with identified students.
    2. Plan and continue to model, teach, and support the areas identified in need of instruction on the Class profile form for small groups or the whole class.
    • Oral Reading Rate, Phrasing and expression (Use appropriate leveled passages from Progress Monitoring for repeated readings. See Routine Card 11–13 for routines to improve oral reading fluency.)
    • Oral retellings and written summaries (See Blackline Masters at the end of the Teacher Guides.)

    Enhancing reading progress through independent reading

    When kids have access to books on topics that interest them, they read more often and for longer periods of time... often without too much prodding. In an effort to help you guide your students’ parents in choosing the right book for their child’s age and interests, we’ve included a list of titles separated by grade level. They’re adapted from the Association for Library Service to Children and are part of their 2019 Notable Books list.

    Please choose from the following age groups, and download the appropriate PDF to send to your students’ parents.

    What’s on the calendar for 2020?

    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. December’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!

    Download the calendar  

    Read more
  • It’s time for parent-teacher conferences!

    Laptop displaying DRA3 Online report for Oral Reading Summary

    Streamline your preparations with DRA3’s online reports.

    For some students, nothing conjures up greater anxiety than these three words: parent-teacher conferences. What will my teacher(s) have to say? Have I done everything I can to get a good report? Am I doing well?? Concurrently, parents have similar concerns. What will their teacher(s) have to say? Have I done everything I can to help my child succeed in school? Are they doing well? Taking time out to make sure that you have all of the information related to each student’s progress can be an overwhelming task at a time of year when their attention span is already waning with the upcoming holidays. Math grades, outcome tests, science grades, reading skills progress, social studies… the list of reports and papers is seemingly endless.

    DRA3 can take care of one big item on that list — reading skills progress. Our powerful online platform gives you unlimited access to:

    • Class Roster Report
    • Student Action Plan
    • Student Assessment History
    • Assessment Instance Results
    • Parent Report
    • Student Performance Over Time
    • Class Skills Summary
    • School/District Benchmark Scoring Report
    • School/District Data Across Seasons (and Across Years)

    What’s on the calendar for November?

    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!

    Download the calendar  

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  • 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!

    Download the calendar  

    Read more
  • The dust has settled. Now what?

    The hubbub and chaos of the first days of school are behind you, and your days are filled with getting to know each of your new students. Perhaps a rogue paper airplane that landed at the foot of your desk while you were facing the whiteboard has already prompted a seating change. Perhaps the little boy who comes in each morning and rattles off random facts has inspired you to add a supplementary unit on the history of drinking straws. Perhaps you’re already planning your escape (kidding!). At any rate, whatever the first few weeks had in store for you, you are looking toward the future, and planning your next steps with your new students.

    What’s next?

    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. September’s activities are crucial to your students’ reading success, and will set you on the path to discovering the lifelong reader in each of them!
     

    Download the calendar
     

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  • Get ready to soar to new heights!

    Two students reading

    “Reading is essential for those who seek to rise above the ordinary.”
    – Jim Rohn

    Reading helps us grow, takes us to places we’ve never been, and opens up opportunities we’d otherwise might never have. Reading is the basis for all learning — and our team places a high value on both. Like opening the cover to a new book, each school year is a chance to transform your students into lifelong learners and avid adventurers through reading.

    Just as each student is unique, so, too, are their reading skills. Where one student may have a firm grip on context, they may struggle with retention. Some of your students may be reading two grades ahead while others are at grade level — or two grades behind. Determining each student’s individual reading abilities for each skill can be overwhelming, especially considering back-to-school is already packed to the gills with activity and excitement.

    Enter the Developmental Reading Assessment, now in its third edition (a.k.a. DRA3). Its authors have researched, revamped, and reengineered it to not only make your students better readers, but to make your day easier. We understand that learning how to use a new or updated assessment can be daunting, especially in the beginning of the school year, but we’ve been burning the midnight oil to make sure that you’ve got all of the training and support you need right at your fingertips. We’ve also put together a reading assessment calendar to help guide you through the school year, outlining important activities for each month, as well as pertinent events.

    August’s calendar is full of training and planning, and ours is no exception! Both are excellent means to ensuring a successful year, full of growth and adventure. We are honored to have a hand in this year’s adventures, and are right by your side if you need us!

    Download the calendar

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  • DRA3: Empowering teachers. Engaging students.

    Female reading book to child

    Here's to beginnings…

    33 years ago, when teachers Joetta Beaver and Dr. Mark Carter saw a need for and developed the Developmental Reading Assessment™, they could only dream that it would find its way into as many schools, and affected as many students as it has. Luckily for all of us, their dedication to expanding the horizons of readers everywhere didn't end there! Now in its third edition, the DRA™3 is about to hit the mailboxes of teachers everywhere, and this version will knock your socks off!

    While beginning the process of updating the DRA™2, we reached out to our customers to find out what was most important to them. 97% told us that the latest research and field studies to support its validity were important to them, 96% looked for a positive experience for the student, while 95% felt that an ample selection of fiction and non-fiction leveled books for all reading levels was a priority. 89% looked for an all-inclusive kit with reading benchmarking, word analysis, and progress monitoring, 89% utilize teaching tools to improve their efficiency and effectiveness, and 88% would appreciate built-in professional development.

    We took all of this valuable educator feedback and combined it with field studies and updated research and are thrilled with the result. DRA3 isn't simply the premier developmental reading assessment, it's an all-inclusive solution for transforming students into lifelong readers!

    Here's what one of our team members had to say about it: "The DRA3 provides teachers with the in-depth information they need to help their students become proficient, enthusiastic readers. With over 100 Benchmark Assessment Books at 23 reading levels, as well as Word Analysis and Progress Monitoring options, DRA3 is a comprehensive assessment system to engage and support developing readers in Grades K–8." – Erin Gunelson, Senior Product Manager for DRA3

    "The 'cream' of DRA is the Focus for Instruction page."
    - February 2019 Reading Assessment Survey

    What's new with DRA3?

    We're glad you asked! One great new feature is the Level Estimator which identifies the best starting levels for younger students or new students entering your school or district. The entire solution is also available on a digital system that offers teachers a web-based platform to assess, score, report, manage data, and create and monitor individual student reading plans — all in the same place. This data follows individual students through each grade allowing for a smooth transition and easy access to historical data. The digital platform includes a few extra reports as well, such as:

    • Class Roster Report
    • Student Action Plan
    • Student Assessment History
    • Assessment Instance Results
    • Parent Report
    • Student Performance Over Time
    • Class Skills Summary
    • School/District Benchmark Scoring Report
    • School/District Data Across Seasons (and Across Years)

    In a nutshell, DRA3 puts all of the tools you need to engage your students in their reading progress in one place. Its streamlined assessment, instruction, and progress monitoring workflow empowers teachers and students alike!

    Ready to transform your students into lifelong readers? Learn more about DRA3 at pearsonassessments.com/DRA3!

     

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