Guess what? No matter what anyone tells you or how many assessment tools you learn about, data collection…
Collecting data can be as simple as:
1. Watching a student independently read
2. Taking note as to what books students choose
3. Keeping track of oral reading while reading class materials
4. Having an informal “Book Chat” with students
5. Plan lesson “stop and jots”
Let’s take a deeper look into each of these…well not too deep. After all this is supposed to be a quick and easy way to record student performance with daily lessons. So remember…
Here’s the Periscope Video Link:
Track Independent Reading Behaviors
When students are reading independently in your classroom, take a minute to watch and write down the engaging type of behaviors you are noticing.
L=Looking at you
Mark the behaviors you notice next to each student’s name. Enter the date at the top and Viola!
Data Collection Just Happened!
This is a quick and easy way to track each student’s independent reading engagement. You can discuss this at your Reading Conferences or file it for analyzing later.
Take Notes About What Books Students Choose
This one is super simple! Simply hold conversations about what books students are reading. I usually hold these conversations once a week with the entire guided reading group. We take turns showing and sharing the books we are reading. I have a page in my notebook where I jot down the name of the book. This helps me to help students make choices when picking books.
Sometimes I show book trailer previews from YouTube to show students about other books they may be interested in based upon the titles they are choosing. Sometimes I find books that I think my students would like and I deliver them as a special delivery to their classroom. This can be done multiple ways. Since I am a reading specialist, I like to make a big deal out of presenting the book to students, by visiting their classrooms with the book, placing it in their book baskets in my classroom with a special note taped to it, or sending home an email or a video about a great book I will have waiting for them the next day. Be creative.
The focus should be getting to know your readers’ reading identities and acting upon it by providing them with great independent reading options.
Keep track of oral reading progress
Here is an Informal Running Record form I created to use when listening to students read during small group time. I can use any text and any portion of that text. There are 100 boxes included. Each time a student reads a work place a check mark in the box. If the word is read incorrectly than write the word said over the word read.
I included a quick comprehension check for both fiction and nonfiction along with a rating scale of 1-4. Then you can put the results in the lower corner for quick reference later on. File away and Poof! More Data Collection Happening!
Hold Informal Book Chats
I like to hold informal book chats/ not conferences about once a month. You can decide the frequency of the chats depending upon the student and the grade level. This is an example of one I would use with all of my K-5 students. I kept it basic enough that it would work across grade levels.
The main purpose behind Book Chats is to simply talk about books with your students independently. Use the form or stray from it. Let the conversation happen naturally. This is not a script, but I would suggest taking good notes for future reference.
Plan Stop and Jots
Plan ahead by reading the read aloud and locating stopping points throughout. You can focus on a reading strategy or skill you are working on in class. Plan a good stopping point to have students write down their understanding, answer a question, or perform a task such as questioning, inferring, visualizing, etc. Place sticky notes in the text to remind you of the stopping point and the task you would like students to perform. Students then jot down their answers on sticky notes or in their reading journals. Have them write the date next to their “jot” or answer.
Ok…how easy was that? Keep it all in a notebook, binder, file, anything you like.
Use it!!! So much of our time collecting data is wasted simply collecting data…to never be looked at again. DO NOT let this time wasting happen to you. Collect useful information with ease daily and look at it often especially when planning instruction and guided reading group placement.
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Until the next post…