Friday, March 11, 2011

How To Raise Reading Test Scores!

How To Raise Reading Test Scores!
Teach Kids To Love Books!

Learn the Critical Tier 2 and 3 Academic Vocabulary! 

We spend billions every year to get kids to read and comprehend!

We buy reading software, basil readers, easy read books, workbooks, Dibles, RTI, reading exams, intervention after intervention, and endless teacher training on how to use the predigested programs, software and materials! Yet we are going down the tubes with more and more illiteracy in the US. Why not stop the stupidity and just put great works of literature in kids hands and spend hours, days, and weeks reading magical stories with them.

What is the secret to literacy and reasoning! Learning to read and seeing the value of literature and word knowledge.

  • 107 words make up over 50% of the words you read! 
  • 1000 words make up 75-80% of the words you read! 
  • 5,000 words make up 85-90% of the words you read! 
Teaching Critical Tier 2 and Tier 3 academic vocabulary
The critical academic vocabulary knowledge to attain high test scores is not explicitly taught in a fun lasting way in most classes! Tier 2 academic vocabulary instruction helps students drill down to make meaning from reading comprehension questions and Tier 3 vocabulary knowledge pinpoints the right answer. The new Common Core State Standards: English Language Arts College and Career Ready Goals explicitly states teachers must teach critical Tier 1, 2 and 3 vocabulary to meet the new higher goals and objectives!
The 44 phonemes of English: Learning Phonics
44 English Phonemes
Dr Suess taught countless generations to read using whimsical rhymes, fanciful tales, and kid friendly absurdity. With no more than 300 words we learned phonemic awareness, fluency, sight words and how to read and love books. Today we kill any desire to read and learn as we parse reading into so many boring bits.

Use quality summative reading assessments
Using practice tests help students get comfortable with assessments will alleviate testing anxiety.
My students use very little test prep material to prepare for State Standardized Testing due to the fact most seems useless and costly.The one exception is the TAKS Reading Assessment and Math Assessment (Texas Assessment of Knowledge and Skill: A Pearson Publication). All previous years exams are free and are released through the the Texas Department of Eduction website.
The released assessments are produced by Pearson Publishing a company that produces a large share of State Standardized Testing. Teachers can access all released test back to 2005 in a PDF format or online testing format. My students use a hard copy of the PDF reading and math assessment a few weeks before any Standardized State testing. Students always study the test in pairs with both students reading all passages out loud and disusing questions to find a consensus. Students take notes, use dictionaries, thesaurus, and ask
 for assistance from the teacher to find the best choice for the question. Students use three test during test prep one below grade level, at level and finally one above grade level.
    Student use the TAKS Test at the end of the four weeks of Reading Boot Camp to polish and refine their comprehension and vocabulary knowledge. Students will find the assessment a great way to prepare for multiple choice exam.

Free Online Reading Test

Start with simple fluency building skills using great children's literature. 

The lost art of fluency drills are misunderstood and under used. 

The history of fluency research in the field of reading might be characterized as intellectually spasmodic: There are periods of great effort and creativity, followed by fallow periods of relative disinterest. In 1983 fluency was described as the “most neglected” reading skill (Allington,1983). Oral reading fluency is the ability to read with accuracy, and with an appropriate rate, expression, and phrasing.

Benefits of Reading Fluency Instruction

  • Fluency is important because it provides a bridge between word recognition and comprehension. 
  • Repeated and monitored oral reading improves reading fluency and overall reading achievement. 
  • Fluency is directly related to reading comprehension 
  • When students read fluently, decoding requires less attention.Attention can be given to comprehension. An accurate, fluent reader will read more. 
  • The educational careers of 48% of American children are at risk because they don't read well enough, quickly enough, or easily enough. 
  • Fluent readers complete assignments faster with more ease 
  • Fluent readers perform better on reading comprehension tests. 
  • Fluency is the most neglected domain in reading instruction. 

One Minute Timed Fluency Test 4th grade 3.9 RL Lexile 675

Snow-white and Rose-red

1. There was once a poor widow who lived in a lonely cottage. In front of the cottage was a garden wherein stood two rose-trees, one of which bore white and the other red roses. She had two children who were like the two rose-trees, and one was called Snow-white, and the other Rose-red.They were as good and happy, as busy and cheerful as ever two children in the world were, only Snow-white was more quiet and gentle than Rose-red. Rose-red liked better to run about in the meadows and fields seeking flowers and catching butterflies; but Snow-white sat at home with her mother, and helped her with her housework, or read to her when there was nothing to do. 124 WPM

2. The two children were so fond of one another that they always held each other by the hand when they went out together, and when Snow-white said: 'We will not leave each other,' Rose-red answered: 'Never so long as we live,' and their mother would add: 'What one has she must share with the other.' 182 WPM

Learning Vocabulary

  • Indirectly. Children learn the meanings of most words indirectly, through everyday experiences with oral and written language--e.g., through conversations with adults, through being read to, and through reading extensively on their own. 
  • Directly. Children learn vocabulary directly when they are explicitly taught both individual words and word-learning strategies. 
  • Vocabulary refers to the words we must know to communicate effectively in listening, speaking, reading, and writing. Vocabulary plays an important part in learning to read. Children use words in their oral vocabulary to make sense of the words they see in print. 
  • Vocabulary is also important in reading comprehension. Readers cannot understand what they are reading unless they know what most of the words mean.
Reading Program Overview

Reading Boot Camp is a free open source reading intervention program
designed to turn around an entire school in just 20 days! Teaching every
child in your school to read in twenty days is not only radical but saves
thousands in program cost. Turning the reading establishment on its head and
saving a lost generation is a radical idea. Spending education budgets on great
literature for students, instead of reading software, basal readers, reading
intervention programs, and teacher in-service training is a radical idea.
Insuring that all students have a real future is just a pipe dream if we stay on
this path of chasing reading rainbows. Teaching ten years in high-poverty
schools, with over 85% of the students at risk, has taught me we have lost
our way and the establishment is broken. We buy into every program that
comes down the pike promising success, yet here we are failing our most
needy students. Putting great literature, poetry, and books in children’s
hands is the foundation of Reading Boot Camp, not predigested
workbooks, endless teacher-made photo copies, and needless busy work.
Reading Boot Camp is back to basics with a sledge hammer to the outsider.
Students find it rewarding and fantastic!

Reading Boot Camp Purpose 

Purposes 1) Launch students into the rigorous and intensive
reading and writing program that is taught throughout the year:
 2) Accelerate the closure of the academic achievement
 gap in lowest quartile students; and 3) Teach the students
 school etiquette, classroom manners, discipline, responsibility
 and a foundations in classic children’s literature...
Reading Boot Camp Results 9/14/10

Reading Program Effectiveness: 20 Days!
Eight students are now at grade level! 85% of students made more that one 
year growth in reading. The mean for students not participating in Reading 
Boot Camp is 194.3 RIT for 4th grade, students participating in Reading
Boot Camp the mean is 205.4.

Four classrooms are participating at our school and all show statistically 
significant gains in reading fluency and comprehension!

Reading Boot Camp Overview

The 20 Day Intervention Is Fast, Rigorous, Enriching, and Fun.

Buddy Reading
Music and Lyrics
Comprehension Building Games
American Juku
Peer Tutoring
Fireside Book Club
Reading Master By Grade Competition

Many teachers and administrators have asked me these questions lately. Why is Reading Book Camp (so, unbelievably, phenomenally ) successful? How do you take a class that is reading at the 20th or 30th percentile and move them to the 70th or 80th percentile in 20 days? My answers!

The Reason Reading Boot Camp Is Successful!

1. Language and reading is a function of auditory learning, students learn 6 times faster when listening, reading orally, and speaking.  Language and vocabulary are mastered with repetition and modeling. When a reading teacher relies too heavily on silent reading and silent writing activities, the speed of auditory learning is lost. By finding creative and effective ways to provide more listening, oral reading, and speaking activities during Reading Boot Camp, you can give all learners in your reading class an accelerated chance to develop their literacy skills. During Reading Boot Camp the students are ether reading text or listening to text being modeled the entire day. The repetition of seeing, hearing, and speaking daily builds pathways exponentially the further you get into the program the greater the automaticity. By day twenty, the brain pathways are automatic, automaticity has been achieved, the 2350 most used words are ready to use.

2. Reading Boot Camp is just that, camp, with camp counselors (teacher) providing highly focused fast, rigorous, challenging, fun listening, reading, and speaking activities all day long.

3. Students as teachers, using cooperative partners for 90% of the activities builds accountability for the teams, partners, and personal learning. Students are trained to work as teachers with the ability to run all Reading Boot Camp activities with little assistance from the teacher. Students know all expected learning outcomes and work to meet individual goals and team goals.  Students as teachers multiplies the effectiveness of on task behavior and helps student monitor individual progress and partners progress (Force Multiplier).

4. The 2350 most used English words including the Dolch sight words are modeled, read, written, or spoken 30-60 times per day during Reading Boot Camp. Students are also exposed to 10,000-20,000 new vocabulary words during the reading of a vast collection of literature that includes poems, plays, fairy tales, parables, fables, short stories and chapter books. Students build auditory English language skills with, idioms, cognates, definitions, and important examples of key phrases used in English.

80-90% of Reading Boot Camp activities use partners.
80-90% of Reading Boot Camp activities are done to maximize auditory learning.
100% of Reading Boot Camp activities are literacy based.
80-90% of Reading Boot Camp activities are 5-15 minutes in length.

Please let me know if you would like to participate in 
Reading Boot Camp Training!
Sean Taylor M. Ed

Students growth 300% over expected in reading, (NWEA MAP), Boot Camp ran longer than normal, twenty five days because I had more students on IEPs and English Language Learners than last year and the behavior was far from ready for instruction. The class is now 74% at or above the mean in reading in all domains, and 87% of students are
reading at grade level in the domain on reading comprehension (NWEA MAP)!

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