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  #1  
Old 04-22-2013, 05:55 PM
luvin2teach luvin2teach is offline
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Kentucky
1st and 2nd split classroom
Reading Assessments

This year I have stepped away from teaching in the classroom fulltime. I am currently the Reading Specialist. My principal wants to do a reading assessment on the entire school next year to chart progress of their reading. We are a small private school so free would be the best, but I understand there are not many free things. Any ideas of Reading assessments that can be preformed at least three times a year to show progress? I am aware of DIBELS, but seeing if anyone uses anything else.
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  #2  
Old 04-22-2013, 08:30 PM
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Jlyn07 Jlyn07 is offline
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My school uses AIMSweb, however it's not free.
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Old 04-23-2013, 04:59 AM
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Em_Catz Em_Catz is offline
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Unfortunately I don't know of any free programs, but at our school we administer a very useful, effective assessment called the "DRA". It's helpful because it really lets you see where the child is and the areas they are weak in. Our reading specialist uses the DRA results to create intervention programs for students and to help the teacher know what the child needs improvement in.

According to the company website (here: http://tinyurl.com/c8zkmzd) it's about $350 for the K - 3 kit ad $258 for the 4 - 8th grade kit. So that's, what, about $700 (give or take) once you throw on tax and shipping and handling.

Personally, I would be a little leery using a free program just because a parent could argue that it's not legit and doesn't have much endorsement, so how do you know it's a true reflection of their child's reading score (parents are so tech savvy these days. they google everything we do )
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Old 04-23-2013, 11:52 AM
EdEd EdEd is offline
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I know you're aware of it, but for free you probably won't get any better than DIBELS
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  #5  
Old 04-23-2013, 05:37 PM
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kpa1b2 kpa1b2 is offline
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Michigan
Next year we will be using DIBLES, I'm not sure how high we are going to go with it, at least K-2. We also do NWEA MAP testing.
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  #6  
Old 04-23-2013, 06:44 PM
iteachbx iteachbx is offline
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New York
3rd Grade Teacher
All the teacher's college running records are online on their website and you can print them out for free. (I think- I mean I know I can access them and print them out from home without using my login)
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  #7  
Old 04-23-2013, 08:17 PM
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YoungTeacherGuy YoungTeacherGuy is offline
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We do DIBELS for our K-5 kiddos.
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  #8  
Old 04-29-2013, 07:40 PM
howema22 howema22 is offline
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If you are looking for a reading assessment that is free and great for students K-3, then PALS would be great for you. I know that many of the previous teachers who have posted to this question have mentioned DIBELS; I have found in my experiences that DIBELS doesn’t truly test the students’ fluency and comprehension while they are reading. It’s just reinforcing the students to read as quickly as they can. Therefore students are taught that reading is suppose to be a fast, quick, easy process and that you must only decode. We don’t want our students to become mindless machines, so I recommend that you do not use DIBELS.
PALS is easily accessible to use and very convenient for teachers to use. On this website, pals.virginia.edu, they provide the directions and implementations are provided for all of the grades K-3. There are also activities in which teacher can use to provide the students with more instruction and fun engaging activities that focus on specific topic areas for reading like the following: phonological awareness, beginning sounds, blending, rhyming, word recognition, and many more. On this website they also have a tab for the parents to check out incase they are weary or concerned about the assessment tools being implemented in their school, or they can even print out activities for their children to complete at home. This website also has a tab for RTI quick check. Many of the schools are implementing RTI and this is a great way to bridge a connection with this in the schools. I hope you check this website out and are able to find a reading assessment that works well for your school district.
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  #9  
Old 04-29-2013, 09:44 PM
EdEd EdEd is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by howema22 View Post
If you are looking for a reading assessment that is free and great for students K-3, then PALS would be great for you. I know that many of the previous teachers who have posted to this question have mentioned DIBELS; I have found in my experiences that DIBELS doesnít truly test the studentsí fluency and comprehension while they are reading. Itís just reinforcing the students to read as quickly as they can. Therefore students are taught that reading is suppose to be a fast, quick, easy process and that you must only decode. We donít want our students to become mindless machines, so I recommend that you do not use DIBELS.
PALS is easily accessible to use and very convenient for teachers to use. On this website, pals.virginia.edu, they provide the directions and implementations are provided for all of the grades K-3. There are also activities in which teacher can use to provide the students with more instruction and fun engaging activities that focus on specific topic areas for reading like the following: phonological awareness, beginning sounds, blending, rhyming, word recognition, and many more. On this website they also have a tab for the parents to check out incase they are weary or concerned about the assessment tools being implemented in their school, or they can even print out activities for their children to complete at home. This website also has a tab for RTI quick check. Many of the schools are implementing RTI and this is a great way to bridge a connection with this in the schools. I hope you check this website out and are able to find a reading assessment that works well for your school district.
I haven't actually administered PALS, but it looks like it can only administered 2x/year, which is not really an option for progress monitoring as the original poster had mentioned. The materials also aren't free, though I checked and they are only $125, which isn't terrible for what it looks like it comes with. I have worked with some folks who have used PALS, and it does seem like it would provide some good information.

I'd also suggest that PALS doesn't really seem to avoid the limitations you see in DIBELS - PALS still uses timed fluency tests, and appears to use largely the same general structure of assessments, though it does appear to have a few additional assessments DIBELS doesn't have (comprehension, word reading in isolation).

Finally, I'd disagree with your arguments against DIBELS, or really any assessment of fluency. I do see what you are saying in that if a teacher ONLY emphasizes timed readings as fast as a child can, that's all you'll get. However, there really is no other way to assess reading fluency in isolation other than through timed oral reading as quickly as a student can. It would then be up to the teacher to communicate and reinforce that reading as fast as one can isn't the end goal of reading.
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  #10  
Old 04-30-2013, 08:57 PM
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FourSquare FourSquare is offline
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7th Grade Special Education
I would just do a good old fashioned running record.

If you could get SOME money, then buy a BAS kit.
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