secret to passing the RICA?

Discussion in 'Other Tests' started by littlemama, Mar 26, 2004.

  1. bananas1964

    bananas1964 Rookie

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    Aug 10, 2018

    I seriously think the RICA is a straight ripoff! Even though this will only be my 2nd time taking it, I was sure that I passed it the first time. I just took it on Aug 8, 2018, and I'm not sure if I passed, so I'll just keep studying and seeking out information until I finally pass! California wondering why they don't have enough teachers?? It's because of too much testing, a lack of decent pay, and too many political issues involved. Why should I or anyone else need to take the RICA if I have a Masters in Special Education?? They really need to stop the money scam!! Anyway, does anybody have any tips that would help me pass? It was because of the advice of TeacherGroupie on this site that I passed one of my CSET's a few years back! So if any of you have any pointers, I'd appreciate!
    THANKS!!!
     
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  2. TeacherGroupie

    TeacherGroupie Moderator

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    Aug 10, 2018

    Hi, bananas. Tell me the diagnostics on your first score report and what you did differently for your second go, and I can hazard some guesses as to your likelihood of having passed.
     
  3. bananas1964

    bananas1964 Rookie

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    Aug 10, 2018

    Hi TeacherGroupie. By the way, I never got a chance to tell you thanks for the suggestions you made to help me pass section 3 of the ENG CSET! THANKS a million!! As for the RICA this time around, I made sure I had over 300 words this time. However, I think my mistake was spending too much time on the multiple choice and having to end up rushing on the Case Study. I identified 2 strengths and a weakness. I started with the strengths, giving detail on why I thought it was a strength, referencing back to the lessons/assessments of the student. Next, I listed the weakness. For each weakness, I identified what the weakness was and (or what I thought it was), and for each of them I listed, I listed an activity/strategy for each weakness, stating examples in teacher voice and finally, listing a benefit/explanation for each. I think one of my mistakes is getting the terminology confuse when I see the student responses and what area of difficulty the student is having.
    I'm nervous about this one!!
    Thanks!
     
  4. bananas1964

    bananas1964 Rookie

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    According to the results, on the first time around, my weakness was in the Case study area, which read: "Your case study responses showed a need for improvement in:
    *Describing instructional strategies/and or activities
    *Explaining how the strategies and/or activities promote reading proficiency."
     
  5. TeacherGroupie

    TeacherGroupie Moderator

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    What about the distribution of plus marks in domains 1 through 5?
     
  6. bananas1964

    bananas1964 Rookie

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    Aug 11, 2018

    Domains:
    1- +++
    2-++
    3-+++
    4-++
    5-++
     
  7. TeacherGroupie

    TeacherGroupie Moderator

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    Ah: let me explain, then.

    First, multiple choice accounts for half of available points in RICA, and constructed response including case study for the other half.

    Now the diagnostic +++ translates to "pretty good but with room for improvement." That's what you have in domains 1 and 3, which together account for 30% of available multiple-choice points and 10% of constructed-response points excluding the case study.

    But ++ translates informally to "on the right track, but less than ready for prime time," and that's what you have in domains 2, 4, and 5. Domain 2 is word analysis, and it alone accounts for fully 1/3 of multiple-choice points plus 1/5 of constructed-response points not counting the case study. 1/3 + 1/5 = 8/15, so that's more than half of available points overall. Strengthening your grasp on this domain, including its technical terminology, would be a really good idea.

    If it's any consolation, most of the people who have posted on this thread have reported the same shortcoming.

    In terms of word analysis, what can you tell me about the word "speechlessly"? Use technical terms, please.
     
  8. bananas1964

    bananas1964 Rookie

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    Thanks so much. This was very helpful.
     
  9. Angie13

    Angie13 Rookie

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    Oct 6, 2018

    I wanted to share that I passed on my 3rd try!

    Things I did differently on the 3rd time.

    I read Chris boosalis red Rica test prep book and took lots of notes. I didn't watch his videos at all the 3rd time studying.

    I also took an addition al $100 test prep class offered through my university. She suggested labeling your essays so the reader doesn't have to find the answer. Also, read MC answers first then read the question. Answer simple MC and go back to hard ones later. Save the short answer essays for last because theyr e only worth 5%.
     
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  10. Angie13

    Angie13 Rookie

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    +++
    ++++
    +++
    ++
    +++
    Case study: +++

    Also, focus mostly on the case study
     
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  11. bananas1964

    bananas1964 Rookie

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    Nov 15, 2018

    Hi,
    I just noticed a question you asked! Sorry I didn't see it before. "Speechlessly?" Means without words. No explanation! Unable to speak because of shock or surprise.
     
  12. TeacherGroupie

    TeacherGroupie Moderator

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    Nov 16, 2018

    Okay, that's a dictionary-type definition, and that's useful. But can you tell me why your definition had to include the meaning 'without'? Can you identify a root and two suffixes? If you can, you're doing what teachers call structural analysis (and what linguists call morphology), and, yes, that's a kind of word analysis.

    But there's more to word analysis than that. Think of something else that qualifies as word analysis, and see how you can explain it using "speechlessly" as example.
     
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  13. bananas1964

    bananas1964 Rookie

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    Breaking the word down, analyzing the word. Speech, meaning saying the word, ly and less being the suffix that's added to the end of the word. When I add (less) to the word speech, it changes the meaning. Is that sort of what you mean?
     
  14. bananas1964

    bananas1964 Rookie

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    I think that one of my problems is not using the correct terminology when explaining my strategies. I give the strategy but fall short when explaining why.
     
  15. TeacherGroupie

    TeacherGroupie Moderator

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    One good way to acquire the technical terms you need is to get in the habit of using them. This can be done in small digestible bites: while you're stuck in traffic or waiting in a doctor's office or even reading a recipe, you can analyze a couple of words, rehearse an instructional strategy, or identify topic sentence vs. supporting sentences in a paragraph.

    Back to WORD ANALYSIS.

    In "speechlessly", speech is the root; both -less and -ly are suffixes. The -s in "rocks", "flowers", and "judges" is also a suffix; whether it means 'plural' ("the rocks") or 'third-person singular' ("That rocks!") depends on whether the word to which it's suffixed is a noun or a verb. Roots, suffixes, and prefixes (like pre- in "prefix" or un- in "unable") are all morphemes. Somewhat counterintuitively (counter- 'against', intuit 'think', -ive ADJECTIVE, -ly ADVERB), a morpheme doesn't have to have a syllable all to itself and it doesn't have to consist of only one syllable: the word "elephant" is one single morpheme. If we're dealing with a morpheme - the smallest bit of a word that has meaning (like counter-) or contributes consistently to the meaning of a word (like -ive and -ly), we're dealing with STRUCTURAL ANALYSIS. Structural analysis is implied in the spelling rules for "pony"/"ponies" and "carry/carried", but it isn't generally taught explicitly until kids start learning about compound words and Greek and Latin roots and affixes.

    When it comes to breaking words down into syllables, and syllables into onsets and rimes, we're dealing with PHONOLOGICAL AWARENESS or awareness of how language sounds. Here we're not dealing with meaning at all, but with sound: "speechlessly" has three syllables: SPEECH, LESS, LY, and the fact that those syllables happen also to be morphemes is coincidence. "Elephant" also has three syllables: EL, E, PHANT. The syllable SPEECH consists of onset SP and rime EECH; "less" of onset L and rime ESS; the syllable EL has no onset, because it doesn't begin with any consonants, so the whole thing is rime. Phonological awareness can perfectly well be taught to a three-year-old: the song "The Name Game", which many small children think is hilarious, famously depends on and builds phonological awareness ("Nick, Nick, bo-bick, bo-nanna-nanna fo fick..."). So does Pig Latin, a venerable language game in which the onset of the first syllable of each word is shifted to the end of the word and given the rime AY (so "speaking in Pig Latin" is "eaking-spay in-ay Ig-pay Atin-lay"). I should add that phonological awareness also extends to prosody, which includes knowing which syllable in a word to stress (we say SYL-lable but syl-LAB-ic) and which word(s) in a phrase or clause to stress ("The man is an ice-cream vendor" vs. "The ice-cream vendor is a man" vs. "Is the man an ice-cream vendor?")

    Breaking a word all the way down into individual sounds or phonemes shows PHONEMIC AWARENESS. This also can be taught, or better played with, with kids who don't yet read: a three-year-old can learn to identify an /s/ sound at the beginning of "speech", a child with a bit more practice will get the "ch" sound at the end, then the "long E" sound in the middle, and a child with fairly advanced phonemic-awareness skills can hear the word "speech" and analyze it into /s/, /p/, "long E", "ch" and can blend the phonemes /l/, "short E" and /s/ into the word "less". that "speech" begins with an /s/ sound. For purposes of phonemic awareness, it is irrelevant that the word "phonemes" has eight letters, only that it has six phonemes: /f/, "long O", /n/, "long E", /m/, /z/, and the first two phonemes are the same phonemes in the word "foe". Swapping one phoneme for another gives a different word: substitute the consonant /s/ for /f/ in "foe" and you get "so"; substitute the diphthong "long I" for "long O" (which is a vowel but not a diphthong) and you get "sigh". (Among grownups, "phoneme" is a better word than "sound": the SOUND that a Canadian makes in pronouncing the diphthong in "about" is different than the sound that I make, but we both intend the same word and thus the same phoneme.) And, yes, all diphthongs are vowels but not all vowels are diphthongs.

    Phonemic awareness ignores spellings. When we're breaking a word down in terms of how its phonemes are spelled, we're dealing with PHONICS. "Speechlessly" begins with the consonant blend <sp> and contains the consonant digraph <ch>. The vowel "long E" has two spellings in this word: the first is the vowel digraph or vowel team <ee> and the second, at the end of the word, is <y>. The spelling <ss> for the second /s/ has two functions: doubling the consonant guarantees that the vowel before it is pronounced short and guarantees the sound /s/, not /z/ (as in "fussing" vs. "fusing").
     
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  16. futuremathsprof

    futuremathsprof Fanatic

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    Dec 4, 2018

    Absolutely beautiful explanation. Well done!
     

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