Assessment for Reading
INFORMAL PROSE INVENTORIES
IDENTIFYING NEEDS - The key to a successful reading programme
If our reading programmes are going to make a difference we must have a clear picture of what our students can do and what are the next learning steps.
Our Informal Prose Inventory procedure not only provides a comprehensive check on the all important decoding strategies that our readers are using, but MOST IMPORTANTLY exposes those readers who are reading fluently but not actively processing the text and who need to be taught comprehension strategies.
Part 1: The Running Record component allows you to do an all important check on decoding fluency. Sometimes there are gaps in our more able reader's word attack strategy that could use a bit of polishing.
Part 2: Retell and Questions - a measure of the reader's ability to construct the literal meaning of text. Sometimes we rush into critical thinking about text too quickly and leave out this important foundational skill. The retell looks at the students ability to accurately process the information they are reading and hold onto it. This only occurs when the student has habitualised active reading strategies.
Comprehension - should we be measuring critical thinking?
Well to be perfectly honest, we don't think the 'formal' testing scenario is the place to try an analyse students critical thinking ability. I have worked with other tests which try to measure this and found that it is actually possible to answer many of the questions without reading the text which seems to be a disconnect as far as I am concerned. We think that our SharpReading guided reading sessions provide a much more authentic opportunity to measure critical thinking.
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Sample the tutorials and get a idea of what the implementation involves and the diagnostic data that you get from the testing procedure.