Nonreaders

Discussion in 'Elementary Education Archives' started by sllecompte, May 7, 2007.

  1. sllecompte

    sllecompte Rookie

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    May 7, 2007

    I am completing my second year of teaching first grade. I told myself last year that I would not have nonreaders moving on to second grade. Well, I am really bummed out to see that I have three nonreaders that will move on to second grade. One student came to me after the first nine weeks with o.k. grades. She has limited reading skills. However, she has the points to move forward, plus she is a severe behavior problem. The other two students are retainees that cannot be held back even if they were failing, which they are not. They have managed to skid by with enough points to move on. So, my question is this.... How do you grade reading? I give a Sight Word test weekly. These students sometimes pass and sometimes fail this test, but never retain the words after the test. I also give reading comprehension tests on read-alouds. These students do well on these, so their grades average out to "C"s. I also give out phonics worksheets to grade--identifying sounds, matching words to pictures, matching sentences to pictures. They manage to pass these also, but cannot read. I have to be careful with my grades because informal points cannot exceed formal points. Formal grades must be in multiple choice format, making it difficult to grade reading.
    I have leveled readers. They are barely reading a D level. When I tested their reading ability on Star Reading, their ZPD was 0.7. I watched them take the test. These right answers were luck. I don't know what to do. There is no way they can pass second grade. Of course, the girl's grandmother thinks it is my fault that she can't read. We are a professional develop school. I do all the research on reading and have numerous research materials to work with. I just cannot reach them. So, what can I do next year different to ensure that nonreaders do not move on to the next grade? What do you grade for reading in first grade?
     
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  3. patti2

    patti2 Cohort

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    May 7, 2007

    second grade teacher

    Hello! I feel your frustration, but do not worry. I had three non-readers come to my class this year and they were all at level C. One just did not get the instruction in first grade (horrible teacher) and the other two are just very low all across the board and have IEP's. Well, I just started them at level C and gave extra work with the Dolch words and buddied them up. I pulled them into guided reading groups more often and let them read with adult and peer helpers. It worked! The one girl is reading at level J and the other two at level I. I also sat all of the parents down and explained that they needed to help at home because I was one person with 20 other children to teach and they needed to step in to HELP THEIR CHILD SUCCEED. They did not like it-but they did it and now that they hear their kids read, they are glad! Next year the teacher will continue where I left off. Have you tried the leveled readers on readingatoz.com? They are wonderful to print out and let the kids read and reread many times. There are about 15 books for each level, which is more than I have in my classroom.

    Don't be too hard on yourself. With some of these kids it is developmental delay or low IQ that causes some of the problems. We are public school teachers with a whole class to teach-not tutors. Parents need to know that they are just as responsible for their child's success in school as we are!
     
  4. Miss Kirby

    Miss Kirby Fanatic

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    May 7, 2007

    I completely understand. I have kiddos who are at 6-8 DRA. There are about 5 of them. One possibly will be retained, but the others will not. They are seen in a guided reading group 4-5 days a week with either me or the reading specialist. They go to after school reading tutoring three days a week. One goes to resource every day. It's really frustrating! But I have to realize they came in at levels 1 and 2, so they have progressed. It's just really hard! I'm a first year teacher and sometimes I think, "What am I doing wrong???"

    For grades this is something I'm still trying to figure out. For comprehension I grade response sheets to read alouds or independent reading. For vocabulary/phonics I grade worksheets. For phonemic awareness and sight words I do one-on-one assessments. For fluency I do the DRA. No matter what their points are (I do have some students who can do the worksheets but can't read), if they aren't meeting the benchmark for the quarter they do not get an S or an E (successful or excelling). So if they are reading at a DRA 10 or below they will get an N in reading (not progressing), 12-14 a P (progressing), 16-18 an S, and over 18 an E.
     
  5. h2omane

    h2omane Comrade

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    May 8, 2007

    found in another post:

    In my 4th grade class when I was a student we had tokens for getting our work done. It takes time to set up but runs all year.

    If you got your work done and handed it in by the last bell you got:

    6 tokens for 0-1 mistake
    4 tokens for 2-3 mistakes
    2 tokens for 4-5 mistakes.

    If you took it home the list is halved.
    3 tokens,
    2 tokens,
    1 token.

    If you had more than 5 errors or didnt get it done you would lose the tokens for that assignment.

    This forced us to use our time well and we couldn't wait to start on the work so that we would more time to make sure it was perfect before handing it in.

    6 tokens times 4 classes Math, English, Science, Social. = 24 tokens per day, or 120 per week.

    Our teacher also had bake sales, auctions and prize bins that you couls spend your tokens on (tokens were 1 inch squares of bristol board cardboard in various colours)

    I cant remember much from grade 4 but the token system is vivid in my memory.
    AND my biggest idea. To encourage kids to read, I will give them a chance to earn bonus tokens. If you finish a book that is at your reading level, at school, or at home (with parents observation) and write a summary book report (less than 1 page with theme, characters, plot, new words, etc etc.) you EARN 1 TOKEN PER NUMBERED PAGE in the book. ie if you read a 285 page book you get 285 bonus tokens. if you read a 50 page book, you earn 50 tokens. Any it really doesn't matter how long the book is, because if the student is reading at a level below them, they can read 4 books in the time it takes a higher student to read a 250+ pager. in the end they will still have the same bonus token earned, but the growth will be amazing.
     
  6. sllecompte

    sllecompte Rookie

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    May 8, 2007

    I appreciate your idea h2omane. However, it is not that they don't want to read. They like to read during guided reading and independent reading. The problem is that they can't read. They have no concept of print. We can pull the same book out everyday and they don't understand that those are words on a page. For example, we read the story "The Busy Pond." This book has the repetitive words "when" and "they." Everyday I would have to tell them these words---to every person---on every page!! They can't even read the title after four days. They argued that it was called "The Busy Swamp." One student said that it couldn't be swamp because it started with a pond.(I thought "Thank you, Lord" while the other said that it wasn't a pond because she didn't see alligators in the picture!! I really wish it was as simple as tokens...
    Miss Kirby.. Their DRAs fell at Level A, 3, and 4. Please remember that two of these are retainees. We will begin DIBELS next year, but intervention will be placed upon the teachers in the classroom. One of these students already receives inclusion services. Because we use a points system for grading(they receive grades and report cards like all school children), I wouldn't be able to use your "N" or "P."
     
  7. h2omane

    h2omane Comrade

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    May 8, 2007

    could you not use the tokens for a new word that the kids learn per session? Token economies work in special ed classes and for behavioural contracts. I'm sure the students would catch on to letters, sounds and words, better without the arguing.

    Let me think some more, and I'll try and come up with some more ideas.

    I'm trying to develop a magic wand to tap kids on the head and woosh they are little einsteins. but it's still in research and development. It's the project after getting parents to take a deeper role in their childs education...
     

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