All I can say is WOW! This summer is flying by! I'm sorry I've been neglecting this little blog but I have really been focusing on creating (and finishing) several projects that I started throughout the year. I have so many ideas that I would like to share and I hope to be around a little more in the months to come.
With that said, I just completed a year long 1st Grade Spelling Tests Unit. In our district we had a system of assessing spelling words that was very differentiated. Sounds great right? Well, in theory- yes- but in reality it was very time consuming. Each student had the same patterned words and then each child had 5 different sight words. There was a list for the students to progress through. What did this mean? Yes- you guessed it! Each child had to be tested separately with their 5 words each week. We have a parent helper that usually does this but it takes forever and those calls on Friday morning that they couldn't make it in were not fun. Then I would be scrambling throughout the entire day trying to give each student their own test.
So, we have decided to go a different route. Each week we will assess all of the students on the basic first grade spelling list. They then will grade their own papers as we go over the words together and practice writing them again. **I am going to have them put their pencil away and take out a colored pencil or crayon to grade their paper**. Not that my firsties would ever try to cheat… I plan to do this on Fridays. If the child gets a 90% or a 100%, he/she will get the "challenge"(RED) spelling list. It has the same pattern (example short /a/) words but the words are more difficult. All other students will get the "basic"(BLUE) list.
I plan to give the tests on Thursdays. I will give the test to the entire class but the students who are on the "challenge" list will be able to read quietly while the others are writing their words. After the words, (there are 10 pattern words and 2 sight words) there is also a dictated sentence. I will read the sentence through once and then read it again word by word and repeat as many times as necessary. I can then check for capitalization, punctuation, spelling, and neatness. I plan to finish the "challenge" word kids during my Guided Reading time and call those few students up to my table at one time.
This product contains 30 weeks of tests. If you are interested in seeing what spelling patterns are covered you can click on any of the pictures above and it is in the product description.
I'm pretty excited about this!