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A Critical Analysis of Eight Informal Reading Inventories

There are a number of current informal reading inventories — each has its strengths, limitations, and unique characteristics, which should be considered in order to best fit a teacher’s needs.

From the Lunchroom to the Classroom: Authentic Assessment and the Brown Bag Exam

A Brown Bag Exam uses found objects and images to help students activate prior knowledge and creates a framework for students to express their understanding. Students work individually and in collaboration to create concrete connections between the reading and the Brown Bag items. Unlike traditional assessment, the Brown Bag Exam is an exam filled with conversation, idea exchange, and learning.

Helping Students with LD Pass High-Stakes Tests

Students must pass a high stakes tests to graduate high school. These tests are a major barrier for students with learning disabilities who often do not test well. Accommodations can help. Learn how to help children with learning disabilities do well on these tests.

How Can I Help My Child Do Well On Tests?

Standardized testing is one form of assessment used in schools. Find out about standardized tests, how and why schools use them, and how you can support your child.

Integrating Student Progress Monitoring (SPM) into Your Classroom: The Teacher's Perspective

Is your school planning to implement student progress monitoring (SPM)? Are you thinking of using it in your classroom? If so, consider a number of factors to make SPM an integral part of classroom activities, rather than a series of isolated assessments unconnected to other parts of the learning experience. This brief offers some suggestions on how to use SPM in an integrated way.

Literacy Practices Interview

Literacy practices interviews are informal assessments that elicit information on students’ reading and writing activities, including their free-time reading habits, their access to books, and their attitudes toward reading and writing. Use the interviews in one-on-one or small, focus group-like settings.

Putting Assessment in the Driver's Seat

Take the lead to improve literacy for all students at your school. Implement regular school-wide monitoring of assessment results and student progress.

A Sample Literacy Process Interview Protocol

Literacy process interviews are informal assessments designed to gauge how readers and writers think about their work as they are engaged in it. Participants’ responses aren’t scored, but are used to guide program educators as they teach different literacy skills and strategies.

A Sample Rubric for Grading Student Writing

All written work should be assessed using a rubric. Using a set of criteria linked to standards not only allows for uniform evaluation, but helps students understand what is important about an assignment and encourages them to reflect on their work.

What Principals Can Do to Help Students Become Good Readers

School administrators have a critical leadership role to play in helping students become good readers. This article suggests seven key action steps on how principals and other administrators can create a school framework for success.