On another note, are there any 3rd grade teachers from FL out there? In FL, 3rd grade students must take the FCAT standardized test in the spring and this can determine if a student passes or fails 3rd grade. As a back up in case students do poorly on the FCAT, 3rd graders also complete a reading portfolio. It's a set of 14 reading passages covering many different skills (i.e. author's purpose, multiple meaning words, figurative language, etc.).
We started our reading portfolios last week.......WOW! My poor students haven't been doing that well so far. Since they are all below grade level, I knew this would be difficult for them. I know a lot of the problem is that they are not able to decode the passages enough to fully comprehend them. However, the types of questions were really tricky for my students. We've spent so much time working on building their reading abilities that I haven't spent much time focusing on the types of questions found on standardized testing. This is an area that we will really need to work on ASAP.
Right now, I'm putting together a unit on Author's Purpose where they can work on reading shorter text and answering the types of questions that they will likely see on FCAT. I'm going to try and really work on all these skills between now and late April when they will take the test. Would anyone else be interested in units that would focus on standardized testing questions?
I hope everyone is enjoying their holiday!
Graphics by Scrappin Doodles.