Caila Bishop Individual Student Assessment I chose to do my individual child assessment project on an eight year old male studentwho is currently in the third grade at Stratton Elementary School. This student is extremely wellbehaved in the classroom. There are times when this student can be caught out of his seatsocializing with one of his cousins in the classroom; however, once the student is told to reset, hequickly corrects his behavior. This student always arrives to school on time and enters theclassroom with a positive attitude. I have never seen this student upset or angry. He is alwayspolite to everyone and socializes with the majority of students in the classroom. During recess,this student can be seen playing basketball and soccer with two other male students in theclassroom. I conducted a brief interview on this student and asked him questions about his familyand home life. The student lives with his mom, dad, two younger brother ages five and sevenmonths old, a younger sister who is one year of age, a cousin, uncle and an aunt. The student’shome life is very busy and because of this he has a hard time concentrating on his homeworkwhen he gets home from school. With such a busy home life the student will walk over toDouglas Branch Library after school with one of his older cousins to complete his homework. Ifthe student needs help with his homework he will either ask his mom, aunt or uncle for help.Sometimes the student’s mom will read to him at home but it is not very often. The student doesnot have very many books at home. The student eats dinner with his family and goes to bed ateight thirty every school night. Last year the student liked going to school because he was able toplay games and use the computer. This year the student likes school because there are lots ofbooks in the classroom and he is given plenty of time to read.
I choose to do my project on this student after I observed him the first few days of schoolduring independent reading.. I noticed that the student was skimming a chapter book by lookingat the pictures in the book, instead of reading the words on the page. The student would keep hiseyes fixed on the picture and would quickly turn to the next page. I went up to the student andasked him what his book was about. He looked at the picture and based off the illustrations in thebook he gave me a brief description of what he thought the chapter was about. I asked him toread a few words from the book and he responded by closing the book and asking if he couldfind an easier story to read to me. In regards to reading this student is not at appropriate grade level. A running record hasbeen kept on this student since kindergarten. The running record reveals the following (see figure1): It shows how the student ended his kindergarten year reading at a level three which was atgrade level. The student entered first grade and had dropped to a reading level two at thebeginning of the year. The drop in reading level at the beginning of the school year was mostlikely due to a lack of reading over summer break. I came to this conclusion during my interviewwhen I asked the student if he read any books over the summer. He stated that he did not do a lotof reading over summer break. At the end of first grade the student had made improvements inhis reading and ended the school year reading at a level eight. Although he had gone up readinglevels he was expected to end first grade reading at a level sixteen. The student entered secondgrade at the reading level he was at the previous year. He jumped up four reading levels while insecond grade and ended the year at a reading level twelve which is still a first grade readinglevel. A developmental reading assessment (DRA) was conducted on the student at the beginningof the school year. The DRA results show that the student needs to improve in his readingfluency and reading comprehension (see figures 1a-1d). In regards to fluency the student needs
to improve in his reading expression. As the DRA was being conducted on the student he readthe story with little expression. The student remained monotone as he read the text. Moreover thestudent needs to work on phrasing. The student does not heed all punctuation while he is reading,which hindered his understanding of the story. In addition the student needs to improve on hisreading rate. The student is reading 44 words per minute at a first grade reading level. Thestudent should be reading 80 or more words per minute at a third grade reading level. In additionthe student needs to improve on his reading accuracy. The student had a total of four miscues anddid not attempt to self correct any of the miscues. Moreover the student paused four timesthroughout the reading when he came across words that he could not pronounce. All four timesthe teacher had to tell the student the word. In regards to comprehension the student needs to improve on retelling the story. Thestudent was not able to retell the story using all the characters name or important details from thetext. Also, the student needs to work on retelling the story using more vocabulary that was in thestory. The student was able to retell the story using some language and vocabulary from the text;however he did not have a good understanding of key words or concepts. In addition the studentneeds to improve on retelling the story without teacher support. The student had a difficult timeretelling the story without questions or prompts to guide his thinking process. In addition, thestudent needs to work on his reflection following the story. The student’s reflection was limitedand lacked a relevant reason as to why he liked the text. Moreover the student needs to work onmaking connections to the story. The student lacked literal and thoughtful connections to thestory. The writing stamina of this student is very low. I noticed that this student is a very slowwriter and has a hard time staying focused during writing activities. Sometimes the student’s
inability to focus is due to his peers. Figure 2 and 3 is an example that shows the writing staminaof this student. Figure 2 are notes the teacher had put on the electronic whiteboard for thestudents to copy in their science journals while they were on the carpet. The teacher gave thestudents fifty minutes to copy the notes as she discussed the topics. The students looked at theteacher as she discussed the topics, however, a few times throughout the lesson the students eyeswould roam from the teacher, his paper, to small paper objects on the floor. Figure 3 shows thenotes that the student copied. This student was the only person in the class who was not able tocopy all of the notes in the fifty minutes provided. Although the student did not finish copying allof the notes, he asked the teacher if she would print them off and let him finish copying them athome. Using punctuation is something else the student struggles with while he is writing. Thestudent does not use punctuation marks in his writing. He has a hard time showing where asentence begins and where it ends. He is familiar with the different type of punctuation marks;however, the student told me that sometimes he does not know where to put the punctuationmarks. An example of the students writing without any punctuation marks can be seen in figure4. Moreover the student writes with a mixture of capital letters and lower case letters throughouthis writing. Figure 5 shows an example of his writing where he has three uppercase letters in asingle word. The student knows that uppercase letters should be placed at the beginning of thesentence, yet he fails to follow that rule. The student told me that he doesn’t think putting capitalletters in his writing should be a big deal since the meaning of words remain the same. Idiscussed the importance of using capital letters and punctuation in his writing. I shared with thestudent how the meaning of a sentence can change due to punctuation. After our discussion thestudent went back an revised his previous journal entries.
In addition the student has trouble spelling recalling vocabulary that he wants to includein his writing. The student constantly asks me to help him think about words that he can’t recallor words that have a certain meaning. This in return affects the students writing stamina.Moreover, the student has a difficult time sounding out words and spelling them. Figure 5 is apage out of the student’s writing journal. The journal entry shows a ton of misspelled words. Alot of the words the student misspelled are words he should know how to spell by this gradelevel. Words such as “when, brother, cousin, slipped, rocks and hurt” are all misspelled. Thestudent could make a lot of improvements with his writing if he utilized the classroom word walland other classroom resources; however, he forgets about these classroom resources and has tobe reminded to use them. The student would benefit from using a dictionary, and knows how touse one, however he would rather raise his hand and ask for help spelling a word because it takeshim so long to find a word in the dictionary. After assessing this student for a few days and working with this student in theclassroom, two things impressed me. The first thing I noticed about this student is that he is verymotivated. Despite the struggles he faces with reading and writing he is always willing to learnand never gives up. He likes to know if he has done an assignment correctly, and will fix it if it isnot right. The student takes pride in completing his assignments and learning new information.The second thing I noticed about this student is his attitude and energy in the classroom. Thisstudent is a very happy and social student. He never enters the classroom with a negative attitudeand is very respectful and responsible. He participates in class discussions and raises his hand toanswer a variety of questions. The student’s motivation and attitude are two big strengths thathave already proven beneficial in helping him grow in reading and writing this year.
If I were this child’s teacher I would assist this student with his reading fluency byworking with him on appropriate phrasing and expression using familiar texts. By allowing thestudent to pick a familiar text at his reading level he will have an easier time focusing on theexpression and phrasing of the text. In small literacy group or one-on-one with the student Iwould have him point to the different punctuation that he notices throughout the text. I woulddiscuss with the student what happens when that punctuation is present and how punctuation caneffect reading expression. In addition I would model and support reading in longer andmeaningful phrases with expression. I would assist the student in reading segmented passagesout of the story emphasizing parts of the text that should be read smoothly together. In order to assist this student with his reading rate I would provide time and readingmaterial for repeated readings. I would start the student off with familiar reading material orreading material at a lower level. I would have the student preview the reading material focusingon events in the story and vocabulary before he reads it. Moreover I would support and reinforceself-corrections of miscues as well as encourage the student to use context clues, word structureclues and analogy clues to problem solve unknown words. Moreover I would teach him how tolook at picture for clues that would help with the identification of words. In regards to comprehension I would assist the student in retelling the story byencouraging the student to use characters names, key vocabulary and language from the textwhen retelling the story. I would model and teach the student how to create and use story mapsthat will help him in retelling the story. I would introduce story mapping as a collaborativeactivity using a familiar text. I would encourage the student to visualize the characters, settings,and events as he listens to the story. I would then discuss and chart the main characters and story
events. I would review the chart with the student focusing on the sequence of main events. Iwould then have the student retell the story using the story map we created. In order to assist the student in reflecting upon a story I would provide opportunities forhim to pick his favorite book and tell me why it is his favorite. I would also have the student gothrough the book and point to the pictures or parts of the story that he has referred too. I wouldassist the student in making connections to the text in two ways. First I would model and teachthe student how to make text-to-text connections. I would model text to text connections byreading the text with the student and verbalizing my own thoughts beginning with “this bookreminds me of another book because….” Next I would display a chart of books and other readingmaterial that had been read together in the class to support connections. I would introduce andmake a list of different text to text connections such as comparing characters personalities andactions, comparing story events, comparing story themes or comparing messages the author istrying to convey. I believe that the recommendations I provided above would improve the student’s readingfluency and reading comprehension. A lot of these recommendations could be implemented insmall literacy groups or one-on-one with the student. I believe that this student should beencouraged to participate in activities that will target those recommendations. Moreover, Ibelieve that the student should be encouraged and reminded to use the strategies he learns in hisliteracy groups to assist him throughout the school year with his reading and writing.