Our kindergarten teachers are being required to switch over from the DRA as an assessment of reading to the Fountas and Pinnell Benchmark Assessment System. While I don’t find them all that terribly different at that reading level — the change is challenging for the teachers.
We’re also facing a challenge this year to improve our end-of-year performance on the district reading assessment. We’re a high performing school and the district leadership wants our early readers to be challenged and performing. Since our kindergarten staff is deeply committed to developmentally appropriate instruction, this too, is challenging for us all.
With that as my impetus, I’m beginning a 6 week coaching cycle with my kindergarten teachers. We’ll be using the CAFE book by Joan Moser and Gail Boushey, and Small Groups by Debbie Diller as professional resource materials, along with the assessment guide book from the Fountas and Pinnell benchmark assessment kit that the district issued to each teacher.
Here’s what I’ve set for our work together:
o Week 1 (1/3- 1/7) Goal — begin administration of the F&P assessment
o Week 2 (1/10 – 1/14) Goal: analyzing assessment information to create initial goals for students in reading
o Week 3 (1/18 – 1/21) Goal: using assessment data to form small groups for instruction
o Week 4 )1/24 – 1/28) Goal: instruction in small groups
o Week 5 (1/31 – 2/4) Goal: reinforcement and progress monitoring in conferences
o Week 6 (2/7 – 2/11) Goal: solidifying routines for continuing small group instruction