Currently, states across the country and D.C. are members of consortia developing Next Generation Assessments tied to the new College & Career Readiness standards. Preparing all learners for these high-stakes assessments is top of mind for district leaders. To support school leaders and teachers, EdTech companies are supporting the development of resources that help prepare both students and teachers to meet the rigors of the new standards and assessments head-on AND succeed. As part of this effort, Scholastic’s READ 180 (@READ180) has developed rSkills College & Career and Stretch Text Instruction and Assessment Practice as resources to prepare students for these new rigorous assessments.
These resources allow teachers to:
- Measure students’ reading progress and mastery of key comprehension concepts; and
- Provide teachers and students with authentic Next Generation assessment practice in advance of the new assessments.
So what is different about rSkills College & Career? First, the questions asked reflect the new item types found on the PARCC, SBAC, and state developed next-gen assessments. Students will have the opportunity to have both instruction and assessment practice prior to the new assessments being released in 2015. Practice makes perfect, and giving students experience with new instructional and assessment models will support their overall success and increase confidence.
Second, rSkills College & Career has enhanced technology features that mirror what students will be asked to do on the new assessments. These new technology features include highlighting, chart completion, and matching activities. Providing hands-on practice and experience in the classroom give both teachers and students adequate preparation with the new assessment item types. This is key to ensuring each student builds mastery of these new item types and increases their likelihood for success.
The complementary tool rSkills College & Career is Stretch Text Instruction and Assessment Practice Stretch Texts provide teachers with the opportunity to challenge students to read grade-level, complex texts by engaging them with higher order, critical reading skills such as synthesis and analysis. Building an evidence-based competency is critical with these new standards. This will require students to go back into the text and find the evidence they need to successfully answer assessment questions. Practice questions also reflect the item types found in the next-gen assessments providing further opportunities for students to become familiar with the new format. Additionally, teachers have all of the instructional tools they need to build their knowledge base and comfort with the new assessments.
Preparing our students and teachers for the new College & Career readiness standards and next-gen assessments is incredibly important to the success of our education system. Preparing our students for a successful college and career experience is critical for the future of our nation. rSkills College & Career and Stretch Text Instruction and Assessment Practice provide teachers with the tools needed to successfully prepare their students to succeed on the new assessments and tackle the expectations of college and career head on.
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