Charting Olivia's Progress
Last month we started this journey, following Olivia's progress throughout the school year. For those who might have missed it you can find the first blog article here. And while Olivia isn't the name of an actual child we can track, she does represent the hundreds of thousands of students who are helped by aimsweb each year.
Please feel free to share your own story below.
– Maurya Buchanan, Pearson
Progress Reports for Olivia
I was looking forward to working with Olivia’s parents and let them know I would be watching her and monitoring her progress closely, and it would help her improve reading. I needed to explain that there was nothing wrong with Olivia, just that she needed some extra attention a few times each week to meet with our reading specialist. When we first met at the fall parent-teacher conference they were concerned. Every parent understandably wants their child to be a star. All my kids are. And as I explained to her parents, it was not about Special Ed, it was where she would get the help she needs to read at the same level as the rest of her class.
I showed them Olivia’s progress report. They thought the aimswebPlus progress reports are especially useful to show parents because they make it easy to see her progress. You can start at beginning of the year, and clearly see how much progress she is making every month or so. It’s so much easier to get parents involved and explain how well Olivia is doing when there’s a chart or graph the parents can see. It supplements any observations I have with accurate and hard data. Her mother and father understood, and more importantly, agreed to work with me. They would make the time to read the books I suggested. They also knew of her great new passion, and thought books about ducks would work.
I remember her mom smiling. I knew they were happy to play an active part on Olivia’s reading team. We ended the conference feeling like we were all on the same page (pun intended), and her parents were grateful for the information.
But there was something else.
“You remember her older brother, Luis? He was in your class two years ago?” her mom said.
“Yes I remember Luis. He was one of my best students.”
“Well,” the mother added “He also loves to tease his sister. He told her we were having duck for Thanksgiving dinner.”
“And her eyes were like saucers and filled up with tears,” her dad added. “Even after we said that we would never do that, she still wouldn’t talk to Luis for two days.”