In September, Cassandra's mother worries that Cassandra is behind in reading compared to her older siblings' progress as readers. Cassandra's mother reports that Cassandra seems uninterested in reading at home, and is easily frustrated. But according to Cassandra's teacher, Hildi Perez, Cassandra developed important reading-readiness skills in kindergarten, and is where she needs to be to begin first grade.
Ms. Perez formally assesses students four times a year to measure progress in phonics, automatic word recognition, oral reading fluency, and comprehension. She uses this information to plan appropriate instruction and to place students in guided-reading groups, which change throughout the year as students' needs change. She expects Cassandra to develop strategies for reading new words and to develop accuracy and fluency in reading.
Establishing literacy routines early in the year, Ms. Perez plans a literacy block that includes whole-class shared reading of literature and poetry, phonics and word study lessons related to literature, literacy centers, and guided-reading groups. As the year progresses, guided-reading groups change and students become more independent as readers, applying strategies modeled by Ms. Perez and reading self-selected books during independent reading time.
For more background information on Hildi Perez and her class, go to Assessment-Driven Instruction