Wednesday, 18 January 2017

Resolution #1: Get More Data

New year, new semester. What better time to find out whats new with your students?

Cloze testing is an easy way to get an updated snapshot of how well your students comprehend on-level text. It also offers a useful indicator of how they will do in a grade level of BrightFish Reading.

So if youre just getting started with BrightFish Reading or re-starting now is a great time to administer the Cloze test that comes with the program. The Cloze has been validated as an accurate indicator of reading comprehension in numerous research studies (Bormuth, Alexander, Rankin, etc.). Its a five-minute, fill in the blanks test at grade level that uses Lexiled passages of 200-250 words, with about every fifth word left blank. Students choose the best word to complete sentences. 

What do Cloze results mean?
Cloze scores map to reading ranges: 0 to 39 (frustration); 40 to 60 (instructional); and 61+ (independent). Students scoring in the mid- to high-frustration zone and the instructional zone typically progress at their own pace in the corresponding grade level in BrightFish Reading. Students who score at the high end of the independent zone (above 80) may respond well to the challenge of working on passages from a higher grade level. In contrast, students scoring below 10 may struggle in that level of BrightFish and could benefit from being assigned a lower grade.

Since you have access to levels 1-10 with your BrightFish subscription, you can assign different grade levels to your students as needed.

When should you skip the Cloze?
Generally speaking, students in K-1 are given DIBELS-type assessments to determine reading proficiency, rather than a reading comprehension test. Unless a student is in the second half of 1st grade, I would recommend skipping the Cloze. Similarly, if students are non-readers and essentially reading at a 1st grade level, they may get frustrated doing the test and their results will not be very informative. The test is optional, so you can use your discretion when assigning it to students.

How do you schedule it?
When your classes are first created, the BrightFish system automatically enables the test for a period of 30 days. To see if that 30-day period has passed, you can check your Calendar in the Teacher Dashboard. If there are no tests scheduled, you simply click Schedule Quiz and assign the Cloze pre-test to your class. Your students will click on their Quizzes Tile to take the test.

Once the tests are submitted, you can see the results in the Reports/Assessments page of the Teacher Dashboard.

View a six-minute video intro to the Cloze here.

Cloze Test Results in BrightFish Reading