Monday, December 31, 2018

Reading Assessment Strategies in the 2nd Grade Classroom

It's the last day of 2018 and I'm excited for 2019 and I'm looking forward to new beginnings and new adventures!

A year ago I was struggling with teaching my 3rd graders reading assessment strategies, see blog post, and now I find myself struggling to teach this to my 2nd graders as well. 
I have struggled to find rigorous 2nd grade material that mirrors our reading assessments and I've consistently come up short. Nothing like moving to a new grade level to realize your lack of resources. We have state standards (we are not a common core state) that we follow but my district does not have a language arts (or any subject for that matter) curriculum at the elementary level. 

I've heard people say that 2nd grade is the new 3rd grade and didn't quite understand it until I came back to 2nd grade myself. I feel like I'm teaching 3rd grade material to children who are not developmentally ready to learn and comprehend it. Students are still learning to read in 2nd grade and I have to wonder why we've made this level the new "testing grade." They leave 1st grade having never taking a formal reading assessment where you read a passage and answer questions to the third week in 2nd grade where they are reading two passages and answering ten multiple choice questions...and you want them to do well because the assessment is worth 65% of their grade. 

So while I continue to wrack my brain on how to balance teaching 7 year olds to read and teaching 7 year olds to pass reading assessments, I've created some resources that I hope will help. It is very similar to what I did in 3rd grade. The bookmark gives them step by step instructions on how to best tackle a reading assessment. I took out the highlighting key words and text evidence because our students get to start taking assessments on the computer when we return to school and I'm just not ready to teach those computer skills right now! The graphic organizer is completed for each passage in the assessment. 

I've purchased these reading passages from Teachers Pay Teachers...
I also have this bundle 2nd Grade Close Reading Bundle. I felt that these passages were too challenging for this point in the year, I hope to transition to them around March. 
And I choose an informational and literature passage and create questions similar to the ones found on our reading assessments in hopes that this will give them enough practice, I haven't seen much success yet but I'm hoping that's due to the fact that we had 4 snow days before our last reading assessment and face it... Santa Claus was also coming to town so it was hard to get them to focus on anything academic. I'm hoping the addition of the bookmark and graphic organizer do the trick!