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“Reading is the New Civil Right!”

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1 “Reading is the New Civil Right!”
Testing genre Strategies for Readers Dr. Dimple J. Martin, Reading/Language Arts, K-5 “Reading is the New Civil Right!”

2 Hope is not a strategy We are all doing great things- we are recognizing and appreciating the diversity in our students and their families, we are setting goals, we are differentiating curriculum... It’s is not a matter of doing more, it is being strategic about our teaching. Test prep can and should be integrated into the reading workshop. Hope is not a strategy- Test Talk, Greene & Melton, 2007

3 Testing as a genre Why do our students need to pass standardized tests? How can we help our students show what they know on standardized tests?

4 Why do our students need to pass standardized tests?
Life skill ACT Aspire High School Exams SAT/ACT College Exams Job Placement

5 How can we help our students show what they know on standardized tests?
Teach Test Talk Teach Strategy Use Teach Test Navigation Teach Readiness

6 Test Talk Testing language is hyper-English (Calkins, 1998)
Vocabulary of the directions or questions uses a very proper language Students need to know how to translate the words and phrases


8 Genre Specific Vocabulary
Poetry mood, tone, stanza, line Fiction character, setting, plot, solution, events Non-fiction caption, bullets, text box, diagram, chart Specific terms can be found in the state and Common Core standards.

9 Strategy Use The month of the test should not be the first time students are taught reading strategies Infer, Visualize, Question, Determine Importance, Make Connections, Synthesize, etc Active Reading Using Schema (Background Knowledge) Using the Author’s Clues to Recognize Important Information Identifying and Following Directions Re-Reading Skim & Scan Navigating the Text

10 Test Navigation Read the questions and choices carefully.
Read the questions first, but don’t try to answer them before reading the passage. Read the questions and choices carefully. Reread the text before choosing an answer. Be alert for signal words in questions. Questions are asked in different ways. Bolded words in questions are clues for you to use. Use all the information you are given- titles, captions, arrows, etc. Reading the questions first gives the kids a preview of what to look for as they read. However, if kids think too hard about the questions, they may devise their own answers, rather than finding the answers/evidence in the text. Test makers often include key words in more tan one answer to see if you are reading carefully or just skimming. Don’t just skim or rely on memory, because test makers will often put true information as choices, but that information may have nothing to do with the question. “Why” questions are usually inference, “Who, what, when & Where” questions are usually asking for information directly stated in the text. Also be on the lookout for underlined, italicized or words in different fonts.

11 Readiness Practice building stamina at a desk
Don’t linger on hard questions Read the question carefully, looking for signal words, bold or italicized words Read each question choice If you skip a question, be sure to come back Kids can’t test in a comfortable spot on the floor- they need to be prepared to sit at a desk or computer for long periods of time.

12 Understanding the Questions
“Reading tests have predictable kinds of questions, and each kind requires a unique approach.”- Harvey & Goudvis Multiple Choice Tests Have Four Main Types of Questions Vocabulary Questions Literal Questions Summarizing & Synthesizing Questions Inferential Questions

13 Literal Questions What… When… Which… Where… How…
Which of these events happened first? (sequence question) When you touch poison ivy, you… (asks information from the passage)

14 Teaching Literal Questions
The answers are “right there” in the text Teach Skim and Scan Look for key signal words (what, when, which, where, how) Match the words of the question to specific words in the text Scan several paragraphs to notice events or steps in sequence Eliminate answers you know are not true

15 Summarizing & Synthesizing Questions
Which statement best summarizes… What is the main idea… What is the main reason… What is the most important idea in this article/passage/poem… This story/article/poem is mainly about… This section mainly describes… This story/article/passage was written in order to… Another title (good name) for this story might be…

16 Teaching Summarizing & Synthesizing Questions
“Author and Me” Questions Teach strategies to DETERMINE IMPORTANCE Read for the gist of the story/article The distracter is often the answer that is most interesting, but not most important Screen out your personal opinion and stick to the information from the passage Wrong answers are usually facts or details from the passage Use the process of elimination

17 Inferential Questions
Why What can you conclude… What lesson does this teach… What is the problem… Which of these is most likely true about… From the story you can probably guess… How does the author feel about… After reading this, what will probably happen next… How did (the character) feel about…

18 Teaching Inferential Questions
Students must use the author’s words and personal background knowledge to infer Students often try to guess based on their personal thoughts/feelings- REINFORCE referring back to the text Search for evidence to support answer Look for text clues Focus on the author’s purpose Don’t over think

19 References Calkins, L. Montgomery, K. & Santman, D. (1998). A teacher’s guide to standardized reading tests. Portsmouth: Heinemann. Greene, A.H & Melton, G.D. (2007). Test talk: Integrating test preparation into reading workshop. Portland: Stenhouse. Harvey, S. & Goudvis, A. (2005). The comprehension toolkit: Extend & investigate. Portsmouth: Heinemann.

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