April 9, 2017

Book Study - The Reading Strategies Book - Wrap Up

Well, it is time to wrap up the book study. Hopefully you have learned as much as I have! So many of you have given me brilliant ideas to use in my classroom. 

A question I still have, and hopefully we can continue to discuss, is how to assess students. Using running records is the main way I assess, but in some of the Facebook posts, people have elluded to assessments they give. Any idea what that is about?

Next question, would anyone be interested in a book study for The Writing Strategies Book? If so, just drop a comment below. Maybe if there is enough interest we could start sometime soon. Let me know.

Once again, I have learned so much from everyone who has participated in the book study. Thank you so much!

If you are just joining us, please get caught up with the links below.


  1. I am a big fan of running records. I do think the people need to take the time to really analyze the mistakes and target the missing skills. Doing the M/S/V analysis is so important, not rating fluency and getting an accuracy score. We use the F & P Benchmark Assessment Kit. I love it! I do the whole class in September and May, and I do any new students. There is a running record, fiction and non-fiction at each level. There are directed oral response questions, as well as written responses for the higher levels. I get a lot of information from this assessment! In my board we used to use DRA, which I liked, but we only used it for older students & we can use a test called CASI. Bottom line, in my opinion, good, frequent running records are worth their weight in gold! But a school does have to invest in the training for their staff to make sure everyone is doing them properly, and teachers have to commit to using them to inform instruction, not just get a level. Years ago, we used to be required to give a variety of assessments on certain dates and we had to report the results via computer to the board office staff (no idea what happened past that.) I know a lot of people are required to use certain assessments. I am grateful out union lobbied hard to get those requirements removed from our workload. It really did take over the classroom because in addition to teaching skills, we were constantly teaching kids how to manage the format of the tests. It was not very conducive to reading or writing workshop style teaching (which I favour.)

    Anyway...that's a long answer. :) I'd love a Writing Strategies Book club! I hope more people will chime in with ideas and opinions next time around. That's where the learning really takes place for me.

    1. Our staff was just talking about the F&P Benchmark Kit on Friday at our staff book club meeting. I would LOVE to get it! Our problem is that our k-3 teachers are concerned about having to do DIBELS and running records. It was a very eye-opening meeting, because I thought everyone did running records and I was very wrong. Anyway...I am so glad to hear you love the F&P kit. I am going to pass this on to my staff.

      I agree in that I wish more people would have chimed in. Thank you, Lisa, for being such a big part of this!

      Crofts' Classroom

  2. I've just bought the writing book but it is on backorder. I'm hoping it will arrive soon. I'd love to join a book study! I'm in Australia though so will probably bring a different perspective.

  3. I haven't looked at DIBELS in a while...it's a timed fluency test, right? The Benchmark Assessment Kit includes a timed fluency component, so potentially would eliminate the need for the other.