Teaching IS rocket science—and you are the pilot!

Teach Reading, Not Testing reinforces what teachers already know–test preparation worksheets and drill-and-kill activities do not make children into lifelong readers. The authors' conscientious approach to reading instruction combines an insider perspective on the development of high-stakes tests with classroom experience in achieving successful reading outcomes at the elementary and secondary levels. Their research-based methodology, building on teachers' expertise about best practice, is based on five key components:

Aligning instruction to the state or national core standards; Using formative assessment; Connecting units to real-world contexts; Motivating students effectively; Holding on to best practice in literacy instruction

Included are end-of-chapter quizzes and real-life scenarios, plus a full chapter on teaching literacy with special populations. Readers will find helpful solutions for teaching children to love reading in the midst of the accountability movement, and an approach to test preparation that doesn't require teachers to sacrifice everything they already know about teaching kids to read.

Using Formative Assessments

Using formative assessments

Chapter Highlights

  • The difference between formative and summative assessments
  • Using formative assessment to check learning as you go
  • Using formative assessment to differentiate instruction

Good teaching requires frequent feedback from students in the form of assessments to check not only their learning progress, but also to monitor the efficacy of the pedagogical processes selected by the teacher (Heritage, 2007). One of the ways teachers are monitoring learning is to give students formative assessments, tests, and exercises that provide teachers with data that can be used to encourage students to be self-reflective about their learning progress (Black, Harrison, Lee, Marshall, & Wiliam, 2003).

Formative assessments are generally thought of as

  • metacognitive tools designed to support instruction, and
  • tools that can facilitate the creation of a learning ...
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