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Literacy Tip of the Week: Week of October 22nd

posted Oct 22, 2017, 3:42 PM by Courtney Richardson

Guided Writing Stems

In North Carolina we assess students' reading skills using a web-based platform called Reading 3D. A component of this assessment tests students' ability to complete two written comprehension prompts about each story they read, in addition to answering oral comprehension questions. As a school, we quickly realized that even though students would show proficiency in their accuracy, fluency, and oral comprehension, students consistently would “drop back” several levels due to their written comprehension. After analyzing student data we decided they needed more practice and direct teaching about how to answer a written comprehension prompt. Our students were already receiving differentiated guided reading instruction, using Dr. Richardson’s framework. We harnessed this opportunity to focus and align our writing prompts with the common core state standards. With this need in mind, we created our “Guided Writing Stems” reference sheet. This document includes multiple writing prompts for each level, addressing both fiction and nonfiction. Teachers are able to target written prompts by guided reading level and keep track of which prompts they have taught. You can find our prompts on Jan’s website.
As a school we have seen progress in our overall Reading 3D data because teachers are able to target written comprehension prompts based on student needs. We will continue to use our “Guided Writing Stems” reference sheet when planning guided reading lessons to help ensure students are given the opportunity to learn and practice answering written comprehension prompts and ultimately show growth in their Reading 3D data.     

Written by:  by Erica Castillo, Lead teacher, Ramseur Elementary, NC 
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