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Note from the Principal
Tuesday, September 26, 2017 12:10 PM

Dear Families,
Last week was eventful with school picture day, the start of after-school classes, and a few classrooms taking the FAST test for the first time. This week, we look forward to "Pedal, Paddle, and Fish Week" for our third graders and our first PTA meeting of the school year. We hope to see many of you at the PTA meeting as this is a wonderful opportunity to network and get involved in the many wonderful things that go on at Burroughs.

Over the next few weeks, our students in grades 1 to 5 will be taking the FAST assessments in both reading and math. These assessments are replacing the MAP test and will provide us with important information about students' math and reading skills. Teachers use this information as a baseline to inform their instruction and design classroom experiences that meet the learning needs of all students. As a school, we use the data we gain from screener assessments such as the FAST to look at academic growth and to help us make programmatic decisions that are in the best interest of our students. Teachers will be sharing individual results of this testing with families at fall conferences in mid-October. More information on the FAST assessments can be found here.
 
On the topic of conferences, please watch for information coming out soon regarding conference dates, times, and the link for signing up to meet with your child's teacher. 

Please feel free to reach out by phone, email, or in person, with any
questions that may arise.

Sincerely,
Principal    
 
Instructional Insights

Guided Reading: Guided reading is a teaching approach designed to help individual readers build an effective system for processing a variety of increasingly challenging texts over time. Guided reading is not an exercise to practice reading skills. It is research-based, professionally energized, highly targeted, scaffolded reading instruction that propels all students toward confident, independent reading of high-quality grade-level books across a diverse array of literature and informational genres. Reading well means reading with deep, high-quality comprehension and gaining maximum insight or knowledge from each source.

 

Using benchmark assessments or other systematic observation, the instructional reading level of each student is determined. The teacher forms a temporary group of students that are alike enough in their development of a reading process that it makes sense to teach them together for a period of time. In selecting a text for the group, the teacher uses the level designation; thinks about the strengths, needs, and background knowledge of the group; and analyzes the individual text for opportunities to support students' successful engagement with the meaning, language, and print of the text. The teacher uses the text to help the children expand what they know how to do as readers.
 
Independent Reading Level: The independent level is the level at which the child can read easily and with pleasure. This is the highest level you would ask a child to read with only a small amount of assistance.

Instructional Reading Level: Most students are taught by their teacher at their instructional levels during their guided reading time. This is the level at which the teacher "stretches" the student in his/her thinking and reading. This is the highest level at which a reader is not independent, but has adequate background knowledge for a topic and can access text quickly with no or few errors.