I want to begin our focus on student data today with a broader discussion of the use of data in general. My hope is that this brainstorm session will hook students into our activity today.
As students enter class, they will grab their classroom binder, get out their weekly warm up sheet and write about the following topic I will post on the Smart Board (W.9-10.10).
"Brainstorm some areas of society that use data to help make decisions. Think about jobs, places you shop, churches, etc. Brainstorm for five minutes."
When students are finished writing, they will share out their answers (SL.9-10.1).
I often ask students to do some writing to begin class. The Standards tell us that students need to write routinely with varying time requirements. Writing warm ups are a great way to do this.
I will hand students their ENGLISH II SECOND SEMESTER DATA SHEET and their Instructional Reading Level (IRL) score from the STAR test they took yesterday. I will ask students to complete the following tasks:
1. Enter the new IRL data on their ENGLISH II SECOND SEMESTER DATA SHEET.
2. At the top of the page write the number of Accelerated Reader (AR) points earned first semester
3. Write a second semester AR goal
After students have added this data to their data sheet, I will ask them to think about the number of minutes of individual reading they need to complete each week to increase their AR points and, subsequently, their IRL.
Students will share their weekly reading minutes goal at their table. I will ask the entire table to add up how many weekly minutes they plan on reading and will write these numbers down. In the future, I want to check back in with the tables and see how they are doing with their goals. Hopefully it will help students be accountable to their peers as well as to themselves and me.
The Standards W 9-10.10 and SL 9-10.1 expect students to have many different types of conversations and write many different explanations/reports. Having data conversations with me and with their peers certainly allows for practice in this standard.
Now that students understand there is a connection between a student's individual reading, their AR points and their IRL score, I will give them some time to practice. Students are going to read their individual reading book for 15 minutes. While students are reading, I am going to sit down next to each student and have a quick 30 second conference with each student. I will use the Book Chart to record what book the student is reading. Keeping track of this is yet another piece of data to help me communicate with students and parents about a student's reading level and goals. This Book Chart video explains how I keep track of student data on the Book Chart.
Lots of research shows if a student wants to increase his/her reading level, they must read. Before reading becomes a part of a student's normal culture, they must develop a love of it. I work hard to develop this love early in the semester. If a student doesn't have an individual reading book, they will refer to their Someday Book List. This list was created early in the school year when we had a book tasting. This video explains the Someday Book List and the book tasting. Many of my students are reluctant readers with low IRL scores. One of the best ways for students to find a book they will enjoy is a recommendation from a peer. When a student finishes an individual reading book and completes a Book Chat Preparation Sheet they will present their book to the class.
During the last five minutes of class, I will invite students to get out their cell phones and text/call their parent to communicate their reading goal. For students without a cell phone, they will use my classroom phone.
I often ask students to take a few minutes to communicate this way. While there might be a couple students who say they did it, but don't actually send the message, most of the students do. I also will follow up with an email to all parents to let them know they should have received a phone call/text from their child with important information regarding their second semester reading goals. I have received a lot of positive feedback from parents regarding this system.