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EFFECTIVE FCAT Reading Test Taking Strategies

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Presentation on theme: "EFFECTIVE FCAT Reading Test Taking Strategies"— Presentation transcript:

1 EFFECTIVE FCAT Reading Test Taking Strategies

2 Developing a “plan of attack” to incorporate reading strategies.
Students need to develop strategic reading behavior and build a strong, personal repertoire of reading strategies so that they can successfully use them when needed. Encouraging students to use effective reading test taking strategies will assist them with their comprehension on the FCAT 2.0 Reading Test.

3 Scaffolding the language for ESL Learners
All learning areas place literacy demands on learners. The language of tests may include new or unfamiliar words for ESL learners and the meanings need to be made explicit to these students. Teachers should consider some strategies to allow ESL learners to access the language of the questions.  Provide opportunities for learner repetition and practice of target language.  Scaffold oral language thoroughly before setting reading tasks.  Accept the language offered by the learners and with positive feedback, model the Standard English version.  Introduce the new terminology together with concrete activities, e.g. synonyms - have students create flash cards with a variety of synonyms. In groups students use the cards to play ‘Snap’  Encourage learners to rephrase the questions in a format that is familiar to them but still has the same meaning.

4 Understanding that text features such as italics, bold print headings and sub-headings, captions and labels convey meaning, and help readers get an overview of the selection’s genre, text structure, main ideas, purpose, etc. is important.

5 Strategy #1 PREVIEWING the Text
Preview the text and its features (headings, words in bold print, pictures/charts with captions). Give the text a quick read over for anything that jumps out at you “skim & scan”. This strategy is for the purpose of previewing. Students will definitely need to read the selection thoroughly. Do not teach students to only skim or scan the passage.

6 Teaching the meaning of words or phrases that are found in comprehension questions is critical in helping students make sense of what is being asked.

7 Some examples are: Refers to Relates to Represents Sequence Shows
Statement means Suggests Sub-heading Symbol Techniques Text Theme Title Tone Vocabulary Valid reason What is another word for … According to Attitudes Author Best Caption Cues Definition Describe Extract Effect Expressions Find evidence from the text Identify Illustrator Indicates Infer Information Interpret Italics In what order Judgment Key words/factor Label Main message Main idea Match Means Most likely generated Opinion Paragraph Phrase Purpose Question

8 Strategy #2 Interpret and understand the language of questions
Read over the questions, read them one at a time without answering them. Circle key words, phrases, and/or names in the question that require you to look for specific information in the passage.

9 Predicting what the text is about helps to orientate the reader.
Making Predictions encourages active reading and keep students in tuned to what they are reading. Incorrect predictions can signal a misunderstanding that needs to be clarified.

10 Strategy #3 Make A Prediction
Go back to the text. Begin reading the text starting with the title. Read over all the text features, including the author’s name, any information giving the author’s credentials, footnotes, captions, etc. Make a prediction about what you think the text is about. Write it to the side of the selection’s title. Remember to go back and clarify your prediction if necessary after reading the entire selection. Title Caption Subheading Map

11 CHUNKING the text makes the demands on the reader’s memory more manageable.
Writing key words in the margin by reflecting on each paragraph or sub-section and identifying key messages or key words at the end of each paragraph or sub-section is a useful and effective reading strategy. Using these key words or phrases to assist in locating information when answering questions is also very helpful. Some of the FCAT selections are very long. Even for capable readers, there is much to remember. Dividing the reading selection in sections or at any point where there is a natural division can make a selection easier to read and understand.

12 Strategy #4 CHUNK the TEXT
Divide the text into smaller chunks to make it easier to read and understand. It may be helpful to draw a line after each section you chunk. Read each chunked section and write a few words about it, a gist, or what that section is about. Circle key words, phrases, or names that you remember from the questions you previously previewed. It is important to take marginal notes to help you connect with what you are reading as you move through the selection. These notes will be useful in helping you locate information in the text, when answering questions about the selection you have read .

13 Strategy #4 CHUNK the TEXT
The author realizes that she has mistaken a school of sea lions for snorkelers Melina B. editor and chief N.G. vac. to Galapagos Island Animals on G.I. not afraid of human contact b/c its rare

14 Strategy #4 CHUNK the TEXT
Continue chunking the rest of the text

15 Visualizing what is being read
creates mental pictures in the minds of readers. Visualization helps readers engage with text in ways that make it personal and memorable.

16 Strategy #5 Visualize What You Read
Create a mental picture in your mind of what you have read. Try to connect the information you have read with your prior knowledge. Remember all the information you need to answer the questions is found implicitly or explicitly in the text.

17 Recognizing the Author’s purpose, Perspective, or Intent is important in understanding the Essential Message.

18 Strategy #6 Determine the Essential MESSAGE
When you have finished reading the selection, write the Main Idea or Essential Message of the overall selection above the title. Galapagos Islands’ wildlife is important and should be protected. (M.I.) Galapagos Islands’ wildlife is important and should be protected. M.I. Even if there is no main idea question, in order to comprehend fully what the text is about, students need to determine the essential message of the piece.

19 Teaching strategies to assist students in answering different types of the reading questions is an effective test taking technique. Students require a range of skills when answering reading comprehension questions. Developing strategies to assist students with managing all of the reading processes will enable them to identify and understand explicitly what the question’s cognitive demand is.

20 FCAT questioning Questions on FCAT are categorized by cognitive complexity: Low Moderate High complexity Based on Webb’s Depth of Knowledge Beginning in 2004, a new cognitive classification system(Webb’s Depth of Knowledge) has been used by FCAT to identify the cognitive demand associated with test items. Webb’s Depth of Knowledge levels are based on Bloom’s taxonomy. Rationale for classifying items by their level of complexity is to focus on the expectations of the item, not the ability of the student.

21 Cognitive complexity Questions with low cognitive complexity:
One-step problem Require only a basic understanding of text Comprise only 10-20% of FCAT “Right there” answers (QAR) Recall questions (who, what, where, when, why), retelling, summarizing Examples of skills with low complexity: Identifying correct meanings of grade-appropriate words Locating details in a text Locating details on graphs, charts, or diagrams

22 Moderate Complexity Questions with moderate cognitive complexity:
Two-step process Require some inference Comprise 50-70% of FCAT Answers are “between the lines” Think and Search (QAR) Author and Me (QAR) Examples of skills with moderate complexity: Using context clues to identify the meanings of unfamiliar words Identifying cause-and –effect Determining author’s purpose Summarizing major points in a text

23 High complexity Questions with high cognitive complexity:
Require several steps Require complex inferences across texts Comprise 20-30% of FCAT Answers are “beyond the lines” Author and Me (QAR) On My Own (QAR) Examples of skills with high complexity: Evaluating strong vs. weak arguments in a text Analyzing similarities and differences Describing and illustrating how common themes are found across texts

24 QAR—Question-Answer Relationships
Strategy that that allows students to see the relationships between the type of question asked, the text, and the reader’s prior knowledge. Students learn how to distinguish questions with answers that are found “in the book” (Text Explicit questions) and questions with answers that are found “in my head” (Text Implicit questions). How many of you have had students respond to a question by saying “it” isn’t in the book. According to Raphael, students who understand how questions are written do better in answering questions than students who lack this understanding. Raphael classifies questions into 2 broad categories: In the Book (Text Explicit) questions And In my Head (Text Implicit) questions. With text explicit questions, information for generating the question AND the answer are found directly in the text.

25 In-the-Text Questions
QAR In-the-Text Questions Right There Questions The answer is in the text; The words used in the question and the words used for the answer can usually be found in the same sentence. Think and Search Questions The answer is in the text, but the words used in the question and those used for the answer are NOT in the same sentence. The student needs to think about different parts of the text and how ideas can be put together before answering the question. Emphasize that Think and Search answers are found in more than one place in the text.

26 Author and You Questions
In-My-Head Questions Author and You Questions The answer is not explicitly in the text. The student must think about what he/she knows, what the author says, and how they fit together. On My Own Questions The answer is not in the text. The answer is based on the reader’s own experiences and background knowledge. On My Own questions are not on the FCAT Test. They relate to the Florida Writes Test. When teaching In-MY Head questions, it is important to activate background knowledge.

27 QAR and Bloom’s Taxonomy
Right There Think and Search Author and me On My Own Level 1 Knowledge Level 2 Comprehension and Level 3 Application Level 4 Analysis and Level 5 Synthesis Level 6 Evaluation Information in the text Information in several places in text Information both in and out of text Notice that the cognitive tasks required in each level are very similar. For example, In Bloom’s Knowledge level the student is asked who, what, when, where, how many, list, what kind , name. These questions correspond to QAR “Right there” questions as all would be found in the text. You can continue to compare each level of the taxonomy to the same cognitive tasks demanded of the student in using QAR. Information NOT in the text but from background knowledge

28 Teaching Students to Use QAR
Introduce QAR using a visual aid and a short selection to demonstrate the relationships. Model identifying and answering questions at each level of QAR. With teacher guidance, students practice identifying and answering questions at each of the levels. Students apply QAR to the reading of their regular texts. For younger students or struggling readers, teachers introduce and practice one level at a time before introducing the next level. QAR is a research- based strategy. **** Remind teachers that each section of QAR can be taught individually as well as a whole.

29 What the Research Says Students’ understanding and recall can be shaped by the types of questions to which they become accustomed (Duke and Pearson, 2002) Students’ generation of their own questions about text improves overall comprehension (Yopp, 1988; Raphael and Pearson, 1985) Provide students with ample practice of generating and answering their own FCAT like questions prior to test. This will make students more comfortable when they encounter these types of questions on the actual test.

Exposing students to types of questions on the FCAT can be achieve with the use of the District created FCAT Task Cards.

Strategy #7 ANALYZE THE QUESTION and Answers Read each question carefully to make sure you understand what it is asking you to do. Try to determine what steps, task or thought processes the question requires in order to locate the correct answer in the text. Look back at the text and find where the correct information is located. Use your marginal notes to help you quickly find the section(s ) that the answer is most likely in. Underline the answers in the article. Next read all the answer choices before choosing an answer. Eliminate any answer choices that you know are wrong. Watch out for distracters. Choose the best answer from among the remaining choices that is supported by evidence in the selection. When you have finished your FCAT Reading Test if time permits, skim back over your answers to check for any errors. WATCH OUT FOR DISTRACTERS!

32 Answers Distracters may include: incorrect reliability of information
Teach students about common distracters found in FCAT answers choices.

33 Answers Distracters may include:
Incorrect inference or conclusion or not the MAIN one

34 Answers Distracters may include: Incorrect analysis of information

35 Answers Distracters may include:
Answers that are correct but not the best choice:

36 Answers Distracters may include; Incorrect method of development

37 Answers Distracters may include: Incorrect causes or effects

38 Answers Distracters may include: Wrong statements of author’s purpose

39 Answers Distracters may include:
Incorrect synthesis of information from multiple sources:

40 Answers Distracters may include:
Meaning of a word, but not, as used in context

41 Have the participants determine which types of distracters are found in the answer choices.

42 Remember there is no substitute for good teaching
Remember there is no substitute for good teaching. Infusing Effective Reading Strategies across the curriculum, throughout the school year is the best way to ensure that students are prepared for success on the FCAT Reading Test. More importantly, it is the best way to ensure they become life long proficient readers.

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