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The quality review is the result of extensive evidence gathering and analysis by Texas educators of how well instructional materials satisfy the criteria for quality in the subject-specific rubric. Follow the links below to view the scores and read the evidence used to determine quality.
Section 1. Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills (TEKS) and English Language Proficiency Standards (ELPS) Alignment
TEKS Student %
TEKS Teacher %
ELPS Student %
ELPS Teacher %
Section 2. Texts (what students read, see, and hear)
Section 3. Literacy Practices and Text Interactions: Reading, Writing, Speaking, Listening, Thinking, Inquiry, and Research
Section 4. Developing and Sustaining Foundational Literacy Skills
Section 5. Supports for Diverse Learners
Section 6. Ease of Use and Supports for Implementation
Section 7. Technology, Cost, and Professional Learning Support
|Grade||TEKS Student %||TEKS Teacher %||ELPS Student %||ELPS Teacher %|
The materials include high-quality texts that cover a range of student interests. The titles listed in the interactive read-alouds, big books, shared reads, and anchor texts include both previously published texts and texts published for this program; the texts are well-crafted and represent the content, language, and writing produced by experts in a variety of disciplines. The materials include texts with engaging content and increasingly complex traditional, contemporary, classical, and diverse texts.
Evidence includes but is not limited to:
Timimoto, a Japanese folktale, is an interactive read-aloud about an entire town that is afraid of an ogre who appears when the sun sets; the only person who stands up to him is a little boy.
The Boy Who Cried Wolf, an Aesop fable, is a classic tale of a boy who calls for help when he really doesn’t need it, and who has a problem when he does need help.
Roadwork by Sally Sutton gives a step-by-step process for building a road and includes bright pictures, rhyme, repetition, and onomatopoeia to engage the car lover in every child.
ZooBorns!: Zoo Babies from Around the World by Andrew Bleiman is a read-aloud informational text containing photographs of baby animals that were born in zoos around the world. The book started as a popular blog.
Bringing Down the Moon by Jonathan Emmett and Vanessa Cabban is a fantasy text that includes multiple instances of dialogue between animals.
Peter’s Chair, a contemporary fiction text by award-winning author and illustrator Ezra Jack Keats, utilizes beautiful illustrations and simple language to tell the story of Peter and how his life changes with a new baby in the home.
The materials include a variety of text types and genres across content areas, such as math, science, and social studies, and meet the requirements of the Kindergarten TEKS. Texts provide sufficient opportunities for students to analyze text and graphic features. Examples of literary texts include but are not limited to:
Nature’s Art Fair, McGraw-Hill Education (drama)
Green Eggs and Ham by Dr. Seuss (traditional fiction)
Tortoise and the Hare by Aesop (traditional fable)
Hen Heard Gossip by Megan McDonald (illustrative fantasy fiction)
“I Smell Springtime,” “Taste of Purple,” and “Rain,” McGraw-Hill Education (poetry)
Examples of informational texts include but are not limited to:
Field Trips, McGraw-Hill Education (realistic informational text)
Cultural Festivals, McGraw-Hill Education (social studies informational text)
ZooBorns! by Andrew Bleiman and Chris Eastland (zoology informational text)
“Kites in Flight,” McGraw-Hill Education (realistic informational text)
Better Together, McGraw-Hill Education (persuasive)
Examples of print and graphic features include but are not limited to:
Truck by Donald Crews is a nonfiction wordless book that includes graphic features, conveying meaning through vibrant and expressive street signs, highways, diners, and road scenes that are familiar to children. Because there is minimal text, the author captures what looking out of a car window would be like for a child who is not yet reading. Students explore interactive features, such as hyperlinks, and features such as headings and captions in “Changes with the Wind,” a Time for Kids digital article. Ana Goes to Washington D.C. by McGraw-Hill Education contains a map and photos that students examine to understand the purpose of the graphic features as they pertain to the plot
of the story.
The materials include texts that are appropriately challenging and are at an appropriate level of complexity to support students at the Kindergarten level. The text complexity analysis also provides reader and task information for educators to consider when reading books to students. Interactive read-aloud texts, mentor texts, and shared-reading texts are above the complexity level of what Kindergarten students can read independently, and texts are appropriately challenging for students.
Evidence includes but is not limited to:
The materials provide a text complexity analysis for the majority of interactive read-alouds and anchor texts; the majority of the texts are at, or above, Kindergarten reading level. This analysis includes quantitative Lexile levels and the grade-level reading index; qualitative features include meaning/purpose, structure, language, and knowledge demands. Even though some titles have a grade equivalent of Kindergarten, the range of reading abilities throughout Kindergarten still makes their overall complexity level appropriate, even in the last quarter of the school year.
In Unit 2, a text complexity analysis for The Handiest Things in the World by Andrew Clements showcases an informational text with a 480 Lexile and an ATOS Level of 2.75–5.14. Qualitative feature analysis includes the following notes: “The text shows how tools have been created to make work-related things easier; photographs provide a clear visual. The structure of the book is set up to show work tasks completed with hands and then with a tool. The text is written in rhyme and explains abstract ideas that may be unclear. Most of the tools in the text are familiar to students. Reader Considerations: It is important for students to have access to the book and the photographs when it is being read. Task Considerations: Use this book to teach students about tools.”
In Unit 4, during shared reading, students read Roadwork. According to the text complexity analysis, this book has a 280 Lexile, which is within the range for Kindergarten students. The pages contain images that support the text, making it easier for students to comprehend the words. The sentences are written in a short fashion and the punctuation is clearly shown in all the sentences. The text does not require significant background knowledge, so the information is easily accessible to all students.
Read-aloud texts in the materials include but are not limited to:
● In Unit 1, A Feast of the Senses, an informational text, is 750 Lexile, Grade 2 equivalent.
● In Unit 5, The Pine Tree, a fairy tale loosely based on Hans Christian Anderson’s “The Fir
Tree,” is 650 Lexile, Grade 2 equivalent.
● In Unit 7, ZooBorns! by Andrew Bleiman and Chris Eastland, is 580 Lexile, Kindergarten
● In Unit 8, A View From the Moon, an interactive read-aloud, is 680 Lexile, average
● In Unit 9, The Little Red Hen, a fable, is 580 Lexile, Grade 2 equivalent.
The materials contain questions and tasks that support students in synthesizing knowledge and ideas to deepen understanding and identify and explain themes. Questions and tasks build conceptual knowledge, are text-dependent, and prompt students to synthesize new information; formal and informal assignments focus on the texts students are reading/listening to and require close attention to meaning and inferences for comprehension. The questions and activities grow students’ understanding of topics and build literacy skills over the course of each unit while allowing students to discuss and evaluate information from multiple places within a text. Tasks give students opportunities to build conceptual knowledge and literacy skills over the course of the year, and the units follow a logical progression of skills and build upon each other. Questions and activities grow students’ understanding of both topics and literacy skills over the course of each unit.
Evidence includes but is not limited to:
Throughout all units, read-alouds include specific questions about the text that require students to give close attention to meaning and inferences; students interact with a text directly to validate thinking. Materials provide students with scaffolding for drawing conclusions and making inferences to combine their background knowledge with text evidence. Materials group similar texts about topics that connect to the unit’s “Essential Question” and engage across modalities. Each week, texts focus on an Essential Question that is often connected to one purpose for the read-aloud. Many questions in the “Teacher Edition” are text-dependent and ask students to analyze and make meaning with the information they hear and read from texts. Students have daily opportunities to answer text-dependent questions about texts and cite where in the text they found their answers. Assignments and activities ask students to take the information they have learned and apply it to partner and class discussions and writing.
In Unit 3, after multiple readings of the “Big Book” How Do Dinosaurs Go to School? with the theme “It is important to follow rules in school in order to be safe,” students participate in a shared task. The teacher states that students need to reread the text to find clues and take notes. The teacher leads students through exploring the story, discussing the illustrations, and taking notes that tell how the dinosaur behaves in school. During the first read, the teacher uses think-alouds to show how to determine the genre, use visualizations, and find key details: “I read that….Why do you think he might yell? What do you see in the illustration that makes you think that?” In the third reading, students make connections to how they follow rules in school and make connections across texts about the importance of following rules.
In Unit 4, students engage with informational texts in order to answer the Essential Question “How can people help to make their community better?” Students begin by singing “I’ve Been Working on the Railroad,” which activates prior knowledge and gives them the opportunity to apply the song to new learning. Students talk about how railroads help communities and why people use railroads, making a connection to the Essential Question. Students are presented with an image from their “Reading and Writing Companion” and are asked what the children in the picture are doing to help make their community better. Students discuss and make personal connections with a partner about things they can do in their community, then draw and write their ideas. Students use the Big Book Roadwork to make connections and answer text-dependent questions. Students retell the story and write an interesting fact, while the teacher models how to find text evidence to support their responses.
In Unit 9, in the fantasy story Hen Hears Gossip, students practice identifying cause and effect when various farm animals repeat overheard information, and the information gets changed with each telling of the message. As students listen to the story, they read each character’s version of what they think happened and then synthesize each message as it changes. The teacher occasionally pauses and asks students to identify the effects of Hen’s love of gossip. In the “Reading and Writing Companion,” students identify why Hen tries to hear what Cow whispers to Pig, citing the page number for the text evidence. Students apply what they are noticing about the effects of gossip by talking with a partner about what can happen when people do not listen carefully, and how it can lead to misunderstandings. To scaffold their conversation, students are given sentence frames: “If I do not listen carefully, I might…” and “People who do not listen carefully can….” Afterward, students write about what can happen when people do not listen carefully.
In Unit 10, students read Panda Kindergarten after reviewing the genre of informational text and the reading strategy of “rereading.” After reading, students use the Reading/Writing Companion to retell the text, write what the text is mostly about using text evidence, and write about what part of the text they found the most interesting. With a partner, students discuss why people care for panda cubs at the Wolong Nature Reserve. In the Reading/Writing Companion, students write why it is important to protect animals.
The materials contain questions and tasks that require students to evaluate the language, key ideas, details, craft, and structure of individual texts. Students learn, practice, and apply skills that help readers understand and comprehend text. The materials offer opportunities for young learners to use critical inquiry to analyze the authors’ choices and how they influence and communicate meaning within a variety of texts.
Evidence includes but is not limited to:
Throughout all units, students interact with many texts on the same topic, which is tied to the unit’s “Big Idea” and a weekly “Essential Question.” Discussions allow opportunities for students to ask and answer questions, identify the author’s purpose, make inferences, draw conclusions, and make comparisons while interacting with a single text or across multiple texts; to ensure comprehension, teachers address words, phrases, and pictures the authors use. Materials contain opportunities for students to discuss and analyze the author’s use of print and graphic features to achieve specific purposes. Students examine the author’s purpose for writing text and how the use of text structure contributes to the author’s purpose. While there is no direct instruction focused on comparing and contrasting authors’ purposes across texts, there is enough interaction in practice to support this skill. Texts are thematically linked to Essential Questions, and students engage in sufficient written and verbal analysis comparing texts related to the Essential Questions.
In Unit 3, students participate in the first reading of How Do Dinosaurs Go to School? The teacher uses think-alouds to show how to evaluate, make inferences, and draw conclusions about key details included by the author: “I read that….Why do you think he might yell? What do you see in the illustration that makes you think that?” The same text is compared to Be Safe, as children answer the questions “How are the texts alike? How are they different? How do they help you answer the Essential Question?” To analyze the author’s craft, the teacher rereads a few pages of How Do Dinosaurs Go to School? to discuss the actions of the dinosaurs, pointing to details in the illustrations. The teacher asks, “What do the words tell us about the dinosaurs?” and provides the sentence frame “The dinosaur follows/does not follow the rules.” In the third reading, students make connections to how they follow rules in school and make connections across texts about the importance of following rules.
In Unit 4, using the text Tom on Top, the students analyze why they think the author wrote the selection. In order to guide students to use clues and support their responses, the teacher asks students to look at the text and photographs. Students conclude that the author wrote this text to show what firefighters use to do their jobs.
In Unit 9, students discuss why the author wrote Bread Comes to Life. Students pull pieces of text evidence that support their answer. After reading, students analyze words the author uses to help readers visualize what the wheat is like: “shoots of bright green grass,” “sturdy blades,” “tall and straight,” “budding heads,” “bristly hair,” “waving,” “streaked with gold.” Students explain how the author makes the pages fun to read.
In Unit 10, students reread What’s the Big Idea, Molly? to study the genre and practice comprehension as they analyze the text. After rereading pages, students think about the places the characters are going and picture what each place might look like. Students describe their “picture.” Students reread again to tell how the author helps the reader understand what happens when people work together. Students identify words that tell about summer, winter, and autumn; they share why they think the author used those specific words. Students imagine the seasons and share other words the author could use.
The materials include a year-long plan for students to interact with and build key vocabulary in and across texts. Most lessons across the curriculum have a vocabulary component, and there is explicit vocabulary instruction that occurs at the beginning of each week or read-aloud. Vocabulary development opportunities are frequent and purposeful; guidance for the teacher is both convenient and thorough. There are daily activities in the instructional schedule and small-group plans that differentiate vocabulary development for all students, including “Approaching Level,” “On Level,” “Beyond Level,” and English Learner levels (“Beginning,” “Intermediate,” and “Advanced”).
Evidence includes but is not limited to:
Materials for Grade K provide general academic vocabulary exposure, oral vocabulary development activities, domain-specific vocabulary exposure, and vocabulary strategies throughout. An oral vocabulary routine is included as a year-long plan for building oral vocabulary. While these terms are not always academic, they are age-appropriate for Grade K students.
The “Scope and Sequence” for each unit includes a list of words that will be taught as well as strategies (“Synonyms,” “Similes,” “Using a Dictionary”) that will be used. The units include materials (“Read-Aloud,” “Visual Vocabulary Cards”) and instructional strategies (“Define/Example/Ask,” “Expand Vocabulary”) to develop and enhance student vocabulary. In each unit, teachers can use the Visual Vocabulary Cards as they define, give an example, and ask a question related to vocabulary terms. A photograph is on one side of the card, so students have a visual representation of the term. Later in the unit, all oral vocabulary terms are reviewed, and students use these words in sentences. Each lesson has a list of general academic vocabulary that will be used, such as concept, strategy, fiction, character, text evidence, and text feature. These terms are used by the teacher in the lesson but are not necessarily directly defined.
In Unit 1, text evidence is listed as an academic term for the lesson. Teachers ask students to “reread the text and write down evidence, or clues, you find.” After rereading a few pages, the teacher asks students if they have any text evidence to record about how Fox excludes Bear; then, the teacher continues, discussing important details conveyed in the illustrations.
In Unit 3, the first paragraph of the shared reading Lighting Lives uses the words villages and towns. The teacher reads the first paragraph and asks which word has a similar meaning to the word villages, so that students can connect that new vocabulary to the word towns.
In Unit 6, oral vocabulary is introduced using the “Oral Vocabulary Routine” (Define/Example/Ask) and Visual Vocabulary cards. Students are prompted to use the vocabulary words as they discuss the “Essential Question.” This section includes a sidebar—“ELL Spotlight On Language”—which clarifies a word that may be confusing or unclear for students learning a second language. Throughout the listening comprehension lesson using Mama, Is It Summer Yet? by Nikki McClure, the following vocabulary is emphasized: nest, blow, duckling.
In Unit 8, students are given the Essential Question “What do you know about our country?” Following the Essential Question, an oral vocabulary routine is practiced with students, which includes Define/Example/Ask. One example of this includes the word country. During the Define portion of the routine, the teacher tells students that a country is an area of land and people who are ruled by one government. During the Example portion of the routine, the teacher uses the prompt “The United States of America is the country where we live.” During the Ask portion of the routine, the teacher asks students, “What is another country you would like to visit?”
The materials include opportunities for students to engage in self-sustained reading. While Kindergarten students do not engage in a self-selected independent reading routine until Unit 3, materials provide increasing goals for stamina. The materials provide guidance for teachers in implementing a self-sustained reading routine and supports to hold students accountable during independent reading.
Examples include but are not limited to:
The “Teacher Edition” mentions independent reading during small-group time, and the “Instructional Routines Handbook” includes guidance for teachers on procedures for self-sustained reading as well as guidance for implementation and accountability routines. The Instructional Routines Handbook provides recommendations to teachers on how to set up a classroom library, conduct teacher book talks, set up individual book boxes, and other independent reading routines teachers can select to implement in their classrooms. During whole-group and small-group reading, the teacher sets the routine for student learning, including setting a purpose for reading, thinking about what will happen to characters, asking and answering questions, and drawing or writing about the book they read. Materials include reading logs and other routines for students to remain accountable to their reading; they guide teachers in conducting teacher-student conferences, literature circles, and other ways to demonstrate their thinking about independent reading books.
In the Unit 3 Teacher’s Edition, materials provide the teacher with the following guidance as to how long students should read independently: “Children choose books for ten minutes of daily independent reading and respond in their writer’s notebooks.” In Unit 7, the time increases to twelve minutes of daily independent reading.
In Unit 4, independent reading routines help students choose a just-right book, engage in collaborative conversations, make connections to other books they have read, and develop the confidence to read different types of texts and reflect on the texts as critical thinkers. The materials encourage teachers to refer to the “Instructional Routines” handbook online. At the end of the small-group instructional plans for students who are reading at the “Approaching Level,” there is a comprehension section for self-selected reading. In this section, teachers help children select an informational text for sustained reading and encourage students to read for ten minutes.
Throughout the materials, students compose across text types for a variety of purposes and audiences. Students in Kindergarten are provided the opportunity to dictate or write personal narratives that convey their thoughts and feelings about an experience. Writing tasks are embedded within the literacy block, where a variety of writing types and purposes are used. These required literary texts include personal narratives and informational text.
Evidence includes but is not limited to:
This resource not only provides the required genres of narrative and informational text, but it also includes genre writing for realistic fiction and fantasy stories. The opportunities are guided, include drawing and writing, require text evidence to support responses, and allow opportunities for students to build writing skills. Writing instruction is varied, so students can grow as writers, and students have the opportunity to partner share, then draw and/or write. The materials provide explicit lessons for the writing process and genre-specific writing only in Unit 4, but all “Teacher Edition” units refer to these lesson pages for additional support in that unit and week’s lesson.
A beginning-of-the-year unit that precedes Unit 1 introduces students to the concept of being a writer and having an identity as a writer. The teacher draws students’ attention to the environmental print in the room and then gives an example of an author of a book they have read. The teacher then tells students, “We can all be authors and write stories, too!” The teacher then explains how writers write: “Writers think about something they know and then draw, label, and write to communicate their ideas, information, and stories.” This and other early writing lessons emphasize the importance of getting ideas down on paper, that writing can include drawing, and that pictures convey meaning.
In Unit 2, students are guided to analyze the prompt “How does the class take care of Tami?” They find text evidence and write a draft in their “Writer’s Notebook.” Sentence frames are included, if needed, to help students in writing complete sentences.
In Unit 3, students listen to a shared read about bike safety and discuss, draw, and write about another possible rule for bike safety in the “Reading/Writing Companion.”
In Unit 4, the writing genre of focus is the personal narrative. Teachers begin the unit by reviewing the characteristics of a personal narrative through an anchor chart; then, they model personal narratives with the mentor text “My Great Neighborhood.” Students begin by brainstorming ideas of events they feel are special to them, and they write one detail that happened and draw a picture to match the detail. The mentor text and the student example are referred to often, as students are encouraged to draft their writing and give many details. Students revise, edit, and produce their final draft. There is also guidance provided to teachers in order to coach students through writing conferences.
In Unit 5, students can use content knowledge about plants from several informational texts read in the unit, such as An Orange Grows in January and “Farmers Market,” to discuss the “Essential Question” “What kinds of things grow on farms?” Students then choose a plant that grows on a farm to learn more about and research facts, using online and class resources, and a picture dictionary, as needed. Students record what they learned, through drawings and writing, then choose a way to share their composed informational text with the class.
In Unit 6, students are guided to analyze the “expert text” Waiting Out the Storm. They identify the realistic fiction genre using text evidence (two people are having a conversation). Using the Reading/Writing Companion to review the plot sequence and the writer’s organization in the story, students are then guided through writing their own realistic fiction story. They use the workbook pages they completed to write their own draft in their Writer’s Notebook.
In Unit 8, students write fantasy stories. First, students refer to fantasy stories that they have been reading in class. Class discussions center around anchor charts that detail characteristics of fantasy writing and analyzing expert and student models. Students brainstorm ideas to find a character and topic that their fantasy will be centered around; they write about one thing that happens to their character and draw a picture to match the event. The mentor text and the student example are referred to often as students work through the writing process to write their stories.
In Unit 10, using the Reading/Writing Companion, students are guided to retell the story; they write down the main events and one detail that identifies the story as a fantasy. Students talk with a partner and continue to write their responses.
Students have sufficient opportunities to engage in the writing process, developing text in oral, pictorial, or written form. The materials facilitate student use of the writing process, including planning and organizing their drafts by speaking, drawing, or writing. Students write on a daily basis, either formally or informally. Often, students use the writing process to respond to a prompt based on the interactive read-aloud or shared reading, and at least once each unit, students take a piece of writing through the entire writing process, including publication. Writing is built into the daily lessons, with the teacher modeling planning, drafting, revising, editing, and sharing/publishing; then, students are able to connect the process to their own writing.
Evidence includes but is not limited to:
Using drawing to write begins in the Grade K materials and usually follows students talking through their ideas as a means for brainstorming. Students engage in planning their narratives. They are asked to plan, draw, and write their ideas for their personal narratives. Ideas are taken from the expert and student models in order to inspire students in their brainstorming. Students are also encouraged to draw their favorite topics so they can gain ideas for their writing.
In Unit 1, a “Smart Start” has students look at an illustration of children writing. Students then talk with a partner about what the children are writing. Students draw one thing they did over the summer; then, for the “Writing” portion, students write their names underneath the drawing and share again with their partners.
In Unit 4, the plan shows lessons for the “Writing Process” broken up so that one phase is taught and practiced each day. For example, the direct instruction lesson on the Writing Process focuses on the genre of “Personal Narratives.” The student workbook includes a student model about a child named Yoshi. Students read the paragraph with the class and discuss how they know it is a personal narrative. The “Teacher Edition” offers discussion support with notes; then, students are given time to draw a picture about an event that was special to them. Unit 4 lessons continue with directing students to draw as part of the brainstorming process, focusing on one detail about the event as the focus of their picture.
In Unit 6, during independent writing, the students are guided through analyzing the prompt “Write About the Shared Read”; they use the “Reading/Writing Companion” to record evidence or clues found in the text. The found text evidence is reviewed, and students write a draft. Sentence frames are provided to use if needed. Students are reminded to use clues from the text and illustrations, interesting words, and singular and plural nouns in their writing.
In Unit 10, students go through each step of the writing process to write a poem about a real or make-believe animal. After asking themselves brainstorming questions, such as “What does it look like? How does it act?” students talk about ideas for a poem and then draw the animal. Students then write the name or kind of animal and what the animal can do. Students read the draft of a given sample poem written by a student; then, they create their own poems in their “Writer’s Notebook.” They share with partners and the whole group.
The materials include opportunities for students to apply grade-level standard English conventions to their writing. They practice and apply the conventions of academic language, punctuation, and grammar when speaking and writing. There are opportunities for practicing and applying punctuation and grammar in speaking and writing throughout the units and across the year, both in and out of context.
Evidence includes but is not limited to:
Throughout the program, instruction begins with explicit information in order to build background knowledge for students; students have opportunities to apply their new skills within authentic reading, speaking, and writing experiences. Grammar, punctuation, and usage are taught systematically, both in and out of context, building upon prior learning. A year-long, systematic plan for teaching conventions, with teacher support, is included; students practice newly-acquired skills in conversation and isolated practice and apply learning, via their own writing, in context.
In Unit 1, students are introduced to nouns. Students work with partners to generate sentences with nouns; the materials provide sentence frames, such as “I see a/an…at school.” Students then tell if the noun names a person, a place, or a thing.
In Unit 2, the teacher begins a lesson by modeling an action (clapping), writing the word on the board, and explaining that it is a verb—an “action” word. The teacher writes several more verbs, and the students demonstrate each one. The teacher guides the students to identify verbs found in the text The Handiest Things in the World. The teacher writes the verbs on the board, and the children demonstrate the action. Later in the unit, students work in partners to generate sentences with the verbs; sentences from the shared-writing activity are reviewed, and the verb is identified and changed to better describe what the tools can do. Verbs are reinforced through students’ independent writing. On Day 2, students are reminded to use action words or verbs in their writing. On Day 3, students are reminded to use verbs in their writing. On Day 4, students edit a draft they have been working on. During proofreading and editing, students check for verbs used correctly, sentences beginning with a capital letter, and sentences ending with a punctuation mark. Additional practice with editing and proofreading is in the practice book.
In Unit 5, subjective pronouns are explicitly taught and then practiced in speech. Later in the week, students are reminded of how to use subjective pronouns to replace a noun. Students practice replacing nouns with subjective pronouns in sentences written by the teacher. Students draw pictures of an object and a person that they see in the classroom and then use nouns to label each picture. Students then write the corresponding pronoun under each label and share their drawings with a partner. If additional practice is needed with subjective pronouns, students can practice in the “Practice Book.” Students apply the use of subjective pronouns when they write in response to a prompt about the story “Hop Can Hop!”
In Unit 6, the teacher reviews that proper nouns are the names of people, places, or things. The teacher writes boy and girl on the board and asks if those are proper nouns. Next, under boy and girl, the teacher writes a boy’s name and a girl’s name from the class. The students come up and identify their names as proper nouns. The teacher uses a sentence frame that students add to, identifying proper nouns and noting the need for a capital letter. Students work with a partner to generate sentences with proper nouns and identify the letters that need to be capitalized.
In Unit 8, the teacher introduces prepositions and their use within a sentence. Students are able to physically act out prepositions as they begin to understand their purpose within sentences. Students orally generate sentences to describe where and how things are, based on the images they see. Students seek out prepositions within stories that have been shared in the classroom, writing completed as a class, and individual writing. Students are encouraged to write complete sentences using a variety of prepositions in order to describe where and how things are. The teacher works with students in small groups to use prepositions to describe pictures, find prepositions within sentences, and finally write sentences using prepositions.
The materials include instruction and practice for students to write legibly in print as well as a
plan for procedures and supports for teachers to assess students’ handwriting development.
Materials also include a year-long plan for handwriting instruction that contains teacher
Examples include but are not limited to:
Throughout all units, the materials contain tips, models, videos, and directions for accurately
forming both uppercase and lowercase letters with appropriate directionality as well as
opportunities for students to use their newly-acquired skills throughout the daily instructional
routine. Students are introduced to every letter in the alphabet in a sequential format that does
not go in alphabetical order. Students participate in a day of explicit instruction for each letter
along with formative instruction throughout the week. The materials also contain explicit
instructions for teachers on how to form each letter and how to provide directions to students.
The review weeks guide teachers in reviewing letters that have been previously covered and
also help students and teachers relate the letters’ formation with the sounds they make.
Teachers can assess students’ handwriting development as students use the response boards.
Teachers “observe children’s pencil grip and paper position…correct as necessary,” and provide
corrective feedback as needed.
In Unit 1, after the phonics component of the daily instructional routine, the teacher introduces
a letter and its associated sound, followed by instruction in forming and writing the letter. The
routine consistently includes teacher model, student tracing, and practice.
In Unit 4, students learn the letter O. The teacher begins by modeling the uppercase and
lowercase form of the letter after which students trace the letter while saying the verbal cues.
Students identify the difference between uppercase and lowercase letters and then write the
letter O in the air before practicing writing the letter on a response board. For the remainder of
the week, students have the opportunity to practice the letter authentically during writing
instruction as well as using the digital tools and the designated page in the practice book.
The materials support students’ listening to and speaking about texts, providing day-to-day opportunities for students to actively engage in discussions about the texts they are reading; students listen, share, and ask questions about what they are reading and writing.
Examples include but are not limited to:
Throughout all units, materials require students to listen actively, ask questions to assist their comprehension, and discuss their learning. Teachers provide explicit instruction in effective speaking and listening, and students practice daily. Students have conversations in order to answer a question at the beginning of a unit; they respond to questions about the text, use sentence stems to formulate their ideas, connect conversations to writing, and ask each other questions during the unit. The bulk of discussions as a class are centered around the “Big Book” selection, where students ask their own questions and respond to questions from the teacher. Teacher questions are balanced between being text-dependent and skill-based, as students learn genre structures, grammar skills, and literary elements. Routines during this time help facilitate discussion, depth of conversation, and connections across various skills learned.
In Unit 2, the class rereads Find the Shapes and discusses the question “What two groups of shapes do you see?” Students discuss different attributes of shapes using a sentence starter: “The way one shape in each group is different is….” The class reviews pages from the story for support. Finally, students discuss the shapes’ differences and similarities.
Unit 4 focuses on “asking and answering questions; students are reminded to ask questions before, during, and after reading to help them understand the text.” Within the text Little Juan and the Cooking Pot, the teacher stops to ask if students have any questions and encourages asking clarifying questions; students ask themselves questions during the reading and use the illustrations and words of the story to help find the answers. When reading a paired selection, Workers and Their Tools, students apply their new learning of text features to ask questions about labels; students think about how labels can help provide information.
In Unit 5, teachers read the interactive read-aloud card “Growing Plants” to students. In a class discussion, students share key details they learned from the selection, and they talk with a partner about how ideas connect with the previously read text, My Garden. Students discuss how both texts discuss plants, even though one selection is realistic fiction and the other is nonfiction. Students talk about a plant they may have in the classroom or at home, including what the plant looks like and how they take care of it.
In Unit 7, before reading the literature Big Book, the teacher explains this book is nonfiction and asks, “What types of animals do you see in the zoo?” Students reflect on what they know about nonfiction, and the teacher asks, “What new information should we add?” The teacher reviews how the reread strategy can help readers understand a word or idea by asking, “Why is rereading important?” The teacher reviews words used to show how things are alike and different so students can practice their compare-and-contrast skills. While reading, the teacher pauses to use think-alouds to model comparing and contrasting, using phrases like “These details tell me how the two baby animals are different in appearance.”
In Unit 10, during the “Unit Wrap Up,” students compare ideas from two texts—Peter’s Chair and What’s the Big Idea Molly? As a whole class, students complete a foldable organizer and discuss ideas from the story. Students “Turn and Talk” with a partner about a new idea they came up with and how the idea helped them. Students are required to express their ideas using complete sentences.
The materials engage students in collaborative discussions. Materials provide consistent
opportunities for students to engage in discussions and practice grade-appropriate speaking
skills using the standard conventions of the English language. The individual components of the
daily lessons provide opportunities for students to speak and discuss individually, in partners, in
whole-group formats, and in formal and informal settings. Sentence stems and modeled
sentences are utilized to model the conventions of language, and students are expected to use
appropriate conventions of the English language through their speaking.
Evidence includes but is not limited to:
Throughout all units, the materials provide collaborative conversation student models and
protocols for the teacher to use during mini-lessons; they give explicit instruction to students
on how to listen actively to their peers and ask questions when they do not understand
something. Students have conversations in order to answer a question at the beginning of a
unit, respond to questions about the text, use sentence stems to present their ideas, connect
their conversations to writing, and ask each other questions when they do not understand. At
the beginning of each unit, the teacher shares the “Big Idea,” and children contribute what they
know about it by discussing with partners or groups and with the whole class; later, discussions
about the unit topic and “Essential Question” take place. The teacher receives support in
teaching discussion protocols and possible student answers to listen for; program routines such
as “Retelling” and “Turn and Talk” give students opportunities to grow in oral language skills.
Through explicit protocols for collaborative conversations, students are reminded of what it
means to be a good listener. Some tips that are given to students include listening to their
classmates, asking a question if something is unclear, asking for help getting information,
waiting after asking a question to give others a chance to think, and being respectful of all
In Unit 1, students use their responses on the “Reading/Writing Companion” pages to answer
the following question: “How does the author show how Bear makes a new friend?” Materials
include sentence frames to guide discussion: “Fox wants to play…. Bear is too…. Goose tells Fox
that Bear is his…. Bear and Goose play a game that…can play too. “
In Unit 4, the writing genre is the personal narrative, and students make oral presentations of
their final draft. Students are provided with a speaking-and-listening checklist in the Reading
and Writing Companion; the components of this checklist include speaking in a loud and clear
voice, listening carefully, and asking questions.
In Unit 7, before reading a “Big Book,” the teacher asks, “What types of animals do you see in
the zoo?” The teacher tells students the text is nonfiction, then has students reflect on what
they know about nonfiction and asks, “What new information should we add?” The teacher is
then prompted to review how the reread strategy can help readers understand a word or idea.
The teacher then asks, “Why is rereading important?”
In Unit 10, as students write a poem, there are opportunities to discuss student writing and the
characteristics of a poem. During brainstorming to generate ideas for poems, students explain
their favorite poems to a partner; they also discuss their favorite real and make-believe animals
as a whole group with the teacher leading. After writing their poems, partners exchange drafts
The materials meet the criteria for engaging students in short-term and sustained recursive
inquiry processes for different purposes. Materials support instruction for students to ask and
generate questions for inquiry. With adult support, students generate and follow a research plan, identify relevant sources based on their questions, and practice organizing and communicating their understanding of an inquiry topic in accordance with the purpose of the research.
Evidence includes but is not limited to:
Throughout all units, questions for research and inquiry are open-ended, and opportunities for
both teacher and student to generate questions are offered. Students have daily opportunities to listen to texts and ask questions related to the reading. Classes participate in read-alouds and close reads in which texts and ideas are revisited to make generalizations and which require reflection on previous learning. Students have the opportunity to choose a topic related to the “Essential Question” and literature being read that week, write questions about that topic, research information using the internet and books, draw and write what they have learned in ways that increase in rigor over the course of the year, and choose a way to present their work to their classmates. The purpose of the inquiry varies from class discussion, to partner talk, to shared writing and independent writing. With adult assistance, materials support instruction for students to follow a logical, sequential research plan that builds in complexity over the course of units. Research tasks are broken down into manageable chunks for Kindergarten students, and students create final research products for a specific purpose and audience.
In each of the units, students can complete a research/inquiry project. The steps are presented, reviewed, and modeled by the teacher. Students use a step-by-step model in the “Reading/Writing Companion,” with opportunities to share with classmates before the project is completed, during the process, and after the project is complete. Students are given topics to research; at times, they can choose their own topic based on topics related to the unit. In Unit 1, students read and listen to books to answer the Essential Question “How can we get along with new friends?” After listening to several texts about friendship, students talk about things to do with a friend. Later in the unit, students discuss activities to do with friends. They practice a script for introducing themselves to a new friend. At the end of the unit, for research, students write a question about what a good friend might do. They share their questions with classmates, draw what they have learned in the Reading/Writing Companion, then choose how they want to present their research findings to the class.
In Unit 7, students have the opportunity to participate in a research-and-inquiry project about
animal features. A five-step outline is provided in the Reading/Writing Companion. First, students choose an animal to research and write a specific feature they want to study. The example in their book says, “I want to find out about penguins. I would like to know what they use their wings for.” Then, students can use books from the classroom, the library, the online library, or websites to find information. The “Teacher’s Edition” prompts teachers to support students: “If children are unsure about how to research, help them find information. As needed, help children monitor and assess their learning to guide their research.” Then, students draw or write about what they learned. Finally, students choose how to present their findings, with options: drawing and labeling a picture, creating a poster, making a video, or putting on a dramatic presentation.
In Unit 8, research includes types of vehicles people use and how they move people. At the end of the week, students are given the research assignment—they will research different types of
vehicles. Students begin by talking about vehicles people use on the land, in the water, and in the air; they choose one to learn about and generate a question about how this vehicle moves from one place to another. The teacher models the process of researching and states that students can look at books and also use websites on the internet to find information. The teacher is guided to remind students that they can use a variety of visual sources to obtain information for their research project. Once students have researched a type of vehicle and how it helps people move from one location to another, they draw and write about what they learned. In the teacher modeling example, the teacher draws a picture of a helicopter and labels the different parts; the teacher writes about the research in the “Writer’s Notebook,” using the new words learned from the research in the writing.
The questions and tasks are designed so that students build and apply knowledge and skills in reading, writing, speaking, listening, thinking, and language. Within each unit, students have
opportunities to practice using multiple literacy skills through varied, interconnected tasks. Tasks integrate reading, writing, speaking, listening, and thinking; they include components of vocabulary, comprehension, and syntax. The materials provide opportunities for increased independence.
Evidence includes but is not limited to:
Throughout all units, students listen to and read stories; they respond to those texts by thinking
and talking about them in partners, small groups, and whole-class settings. Students also think
about and record their individual progress in learning strategies and skills. Students first learn skills in isolation and then apply those skills through authentic tasks that combine multiple skills
into one task or project. With each text, students talk, read, and write about an “Essential Question” related to the unit’s “Big Idea.” Students have the opportunity to think about how the text connects to the Essential Question and how to apply new learning to their own lives. Students have discussions before, during, and after the text and engage in writing activities through the “Reading/Writing Companion,” which connects learning from the text to other lessons.
In Unit 1, an informal research process is introduced to students; they research and present
findings to the class about one of the five senses. The teacher scaffolds the process by modeling
each step first, using the sense of taste. The teacher creates questions they would like to know
about the sense of taste, such as “How does my tongue help me taste different kinds of foods?”
and “Why do I sometimes see bumps on my tongue after I eat?” The teacher models finding answers in the text and conveying what was learned through drawings and writings. Students
then work through the steps of the process in the Reading/Writing Companion; teachers help them select books in the classroom that might be helpful. Students choose a way to present
their findings: drawing and labeling a picture, creating a poster, making a model, or putting on a
dramatic presentation. Students build and apply knowledge and skills in reading, writing, speaking, listening, thinking, and language throughout the process.
In Unit 7, before reading the literature “Big Book,” the teacher fosters discussion and student
speaking skills by asking students about the information they learned that was connected to the
Essential Question for the week: “How are some animals alike and how are they different?” After a discussion, students sing the week’s song, “Old MacDonald Had a Farm,” and the teacher asks, “What were the names of the animals in the song? How are some of these animals alike? How are these animals different?” To answer these questions, students must be listening, thinking, and speaking. Students listen and think as the teacher reads the Big Book ZooBorns! and pauses to use think-alouds to model comparing and contrasting. After reading, students use the Reading/Writing Companion, with a photo from the story, to respond to the question “What animals are in the photo? How are they alike and different?” The teacher leads the class in completing an Essential Question chart, and students share what they know about animals.
In Unit 8, using the text When Daddy’s Truck Picks Me Up, students engage in a shared writing
experience in response to the following prompt: “[W]rite a journal entry from Daddy’s point of
view telling about how he feels about his long ride to pick up his son from school.” Students
collaborate to find text evidence from the selection, discuss important details, take notes, and use sentence stems to respond to the prompt. Then, students apply their grammar lesson about prepositions to review their shared-writing sentences and identify any prepositions that may have been used in the shared writing. Students also collaborate to add additional prepositions to their independent writing.
In Unit 10, students listen to the fairytale The Elves and the Shoemaker and discuss what they know about the fairy tale; they write about events from the beginning, middle, and end of the
story. Students “Turn and Talk” with a partner about what makes the story a fairytale. At the end of the unit, students complete the “What Did You Learn Rubric” in the Reading/Writing Companion. Students place a happy face for something they did well in, a sad face for something they could improve, and a neutral face for something in which they did not do exceptionally well or exceptionally poorly. In partners, students discuss the skills they learned in this unit and areas in which they want to improve.
The materials support distributed practice and provide scaffolds for students to demonstrate the integration of skills that spiral over the course of the year. Skills and strategies are introduced and are spiraled throughout the year, allowing for continued practice that is integrated across the daily instructional schedule.
Evidence includes but is not limited to:
Throughout each unit, the materials provide repeated opportunities to integrate skills across the curriculum, including reading, phonics, vocabulary, writing, and speaking. Literacy skills continually spiral back into the materials; there are distributed practice opportunities for each newly introduced concept or skill. Students read and write every week and within every unit, and the genres they are reading and writing spiral throughout the year.
The “Reading/Writing Companion” allows students to read, think about, and discuss topics related to the texts each week. Students use question prompts to talk, draw, and write to demonstrate their understanding of content and literacy skills. Scaffolds allow for gradual release when students no longer need them. There is prompting to use the practice book for additional support and practice; the Reading/Writing Companion provides picture support, sentence stems, and clear steps for tasks. The “Teacher Edition” includes call-out boxes called “Access Complex Text” that provide “scaffolding for seven different elements that may make a text complex.”
Scaffolding opportunities—such as group discussions, anchor charts, and modeling thought processes using a think-aloud—are built into the components of the lessons, with guidance provided for the teacher. Each unit includes a culminating writing project in which students utilize the writing process in its entirety to compose a piece of writing. The genre of writing varies from unit to unit, but the process is repeated. The resource increases the rigor of the content as the year progresses; as students review a skill that they previously learned, the materials include additional components to the skill to help students make connections and deepen their learning.
Within each unit, tasks provide immediate practice of new skills and then repeated practice in short, frequent intervals; scaffolded practice is offered in the practice book in brief intervals for each unit. In Unit 1, students respond to the text What About Bear by retelling events in the text and identifying Bear and other characters. In Unit 8, students retell the events of When Daddy’s Truck Picks Me Up and identify the main character.
Students practice making connections across the units. In Unit 3, the “Essential Question” is “What rules do we follow in different places?” How Do Dinosaurs Go to School? is a fiction text about a dinosaur who learns that he must follow the rules in order to do well in school. Students make connections between the text and their own lives by talking with a partner about the rules they follow at school. Students draw and write about a rule they follow at school, making a text-to-self connection. The Teacher Edition lists the following sentence starters to focus the discussion: “1) The dinosaurs would not…. 2) The dinosaurs would….” In a follow-up lesson with Can I Pat It? students must use text evidence to answer the Essential Question. The teacher models with a think-aloud: “As I read the story, I thought about the rules the girl follows. She asks permission before she pats the dog and cat. That rule helps keep her
safe.” In Unit 7, students begin making text-to-text connections with multiple texts from the week. The Teacher Edition prompts teachers: “Guide partners to compare Bear Snores On with Animal Homes. How are the texts alike? How are they different? How do they answer the ‘Essential Question’? Have them support their ideas with details from the selections.”
The materials provide explicit instruction in print concepts and opportunities for student practice. There is explicit instruction in print awareness that connects learning to books and texts. There are opportunities for students to connect their knowledge of print to texts.
Evidence includes but is not limited to:
Throughout all units, there is direct instruction in print awareness at multiple points within the literacy block, including whole-class read-aloud lessons and small-group lessons. There are several lessons and teacher prompts for all components of print awareness (book handling and opening, identification of book parts, print type, identifying sentences, upper- and lowercase letters, word boundaries, recognizing sentences are made of words separated by spaces, and knowing a letter versus a word).
In Unit 1, the teacher models concepts of print using the ABC “Big Book.” The teacher explains that she is holding the book so that the pictures and words are right side up and introduces book parts and their functions as well as the author and illustrator. Later, students model, using their finger to show how to read from left to right and from top to bottom, then practice reading each word while pointing in the shared read I Can.
In Unit 3, the teacher reads the Big Book How Do Dinosaurs Go to School? and follows the “Teacher Edition” prompts: “Display the Big Book and explain that we hold a book so the words are right side up. Model directionality as you explain that we read from left to right, from top to bottom, and from page to page….Remind children to read from left to right and top to bottom, and use a return sweep. Have a volunteer come up and demonstrate using his or her finger to show how we read from left to right and top to bottom.”
In Unit 8, the teacher reads the Big Book When Daddy’s Truck Picks Me Up and points out the speech balloon to remind students that speech balloons show what characters are saying. The teacher asks students what daddy is saying on this page. Later in the text, the teacher reminds students that sentences begin with a capital letter and end with an end mark. The teacher asks students how many sentences are on a particular page and what end marks are used on the page.
There are also multiple opportunities for students to notice and practice print awareness concepts independently. The Kindergarten practice book includes five concepts-of-print checklists for students to use throughout the year based on their level of reading knowledge. Each checklist contains sentences related to concepts of print for students to monitor in their reading.
The materials include explicit instruction in phonological skills and opportunities for students to practice daily with rhyming, syllabication, blending, segmenting, and phoneme manipulation. There is explicit instruction in and opportunities for students to practice newly taught sound and sound patterns.
Evidence includes but is not limited to:
Throughout all units, students practice oral language activities daily, in whole-group or partner activities that focus on identifying rhymes; long vowel awareness; and inserting, substituting, deleting, blending, isolating, and segmenting phonemes. The phonological skills grow in complexity and spiral throughout the school year. Sound instruction is sequential, and each lesson begins with the teacher modeling the sound and the students practicing making sounds in isolation, then relating the sounds to letters and words spoken aloud in conversation or in read-aloud texts.
In Unit 1, the teacher introduces initial sounds with accompanying photo cards of objects that begin with that sound. The materials include articulation support for the teacher when introducing the sounds. For example, the section that describes how to make the /m/ sound states: “Put your lips together. Keep your tongue at the bottom of your mouth. Use your voice to make a humming sound. The air goes through your nose. If you pinch your nose closed, the sound will stop!” The teacher starts by saying words that begin with the same sound. Students repeat the initial sound with the teacher; then, they listen to a song and clap when they hear words that begin with the same sound.
In Unit 3, the teacher uses a photo card of an insect to introduce the sound /i/. The teacher says insect aloud and asks students to listen for the sound at the beginning of the word, then repeats the process with the words it, is, and in. Students listen to a song and clap when they hear the /i/ sound. The teacher displays several more picture cards of objects that begin with the /i/ sound and asks students to name each picture and isolate the initial /i/ sound. Students use the practice book to name pictures on a page and circle the pictures with the initial /i/ sound. Later in the week, the teacher posts the lines from the song, reads one line at a time, and leads the class in working together to identify initial /i/ sounds and place a self-stick note under each one.
In Unit 4, the teacher models onset and rime segmentation for students, using the word truck. The teacher segments the word into two parts and then blends the onset and rime together. Students repeat the onset, the rime, and then the word. Students then practice with the words quick, fire, way, and get. Additional practice is provided for students in the practice book. In Unit 10, students learn and practice syllable segmentation. The teacher explains that words have syllables and leads the class in saying together and clapping the syllables. Students repeat and identify how many syllables the word has. The routine continues with the following words: working, many, pride, better, people and middle.
The materials provide explicit systematic instruction in phonetic knowledge and opportunities for students to practice both in and out of context. The materials contain a research-based sequence of grade-level foundation skills instruction and opportunities for student practice to achieve grade-level mastery. Materials systematically develop grade-level phonics patterns addressed in the Kindergarten English Language Arts and Reading TEKS, and there are opportunities for students to apply grade-level phonetic knowledge to connected texts and tasks. There is explicit instruction in grade-level high frequency words and sufficient chances to read the words both in and out of context.
Examples include but are not limited to:
The introduction of the “Teacher’s Edition” states: “Wonders offers a thorough grounding in foundational skills, from the first steps in phonemic awareness and concepts of print, through sophisticated academic vocabulary and advanced morphological analysis.” Many experts are quoted throughout the introduction pages, such as Dr. Vicki Gibson. Materials reference white papers describing the research basis behind the creation of the materials. The scope and sequence shows that phonics skills grow in complexity and spiral as the year progresses. It also showcases the sequence of high-frequency words that are introduced throughout the year.
The scope of phonics instruction for the Kindergarten materials includes a range of letter-sound
correspondences. The sequence of instruction includes first letter recognition, then the introduction of consonants with intermittent vowel instruction. Consonants and vowels are reviewed within each unit; over time, new letter sounds are taught, while previously taught consonants and vowels are reviewed. When some letters are introduced, they are initially only taught in one position. For example, in Unit 1, the letter-sound for s is introduced, but only with s in the initial position. Later in the program, s is presented in medial and final positions (which sometimes sounds like /z/). The last two units focus on long vowel sounds starting with the long a sound and moving through to finishing with the long e sound. In addition to learning consonant and vowel sounds, students apply these sounds to VC, CVC, CCVC, and CVCC words, as required by the TEKS.
Students learn about and practice phonics patterns during daily “Word Work” routines. In these lessons, students focus on skills in guided practice with the teacher, independently in the practice book, and in decodable and leveled readers. Initial spelling activities consist of the teacher saying a letter sound, with students writing the letter. Gradually, the materials introduce stretching words and have the teacher model how to write them as they are said aloud. Materials include all patterns and types outlined in the TEKS.
In Unit 2, students isolate, blend, and spell words with the weekly targeted letter and its sounds. While reading the “Big Book” Shapes All Around, students identify words with the targeted letter/sound in the initial position. Students use “Word-Building” cards to blend and spell words with the targeted letter/sound.
In Unit 3, the lesson for the high-frequency word to begins with the teacher displaying the Big Book How Do Dinosaurs Go to School?, reading the title, and pointing out the word to. Next, the teacher displays the “Word Card” to, points to the word, and reads the word to the class. The students repeat the word and then repeat the sentence “I like to swim.” The teacher points out the spelling of the word and has students spell it as a class. The teacher points out that the /t/ sound in the word to is the same as the /t/ sound in the word tap. Then, partners create sentences using the word. The teacher creates the word and a pocket chart using “High-Frequency Word Cards,” “Photo Cards,” and teacher-made punctuation cards. After reading the Big Book, students write a new story about a dinosaur in the library.
In Unit 5, teachers dictate words like hit, hat, and hot while modeling how to segment each word to scaffold the spelling. The teacher says, “When I say the word hit I hear three sounds: /h/ /i/ /t/. I know the letter h stands for /h/, the letter i stands for /i/, and the letter t stands for /t/. I will write the letters h, i, t to spell the word hit.” “Sound Boxes” are utilized for spelling instruction to help students identify sounds and the number of sounds in words.
In Unit 6, students use the poems “Play Ball” and “I Licked a Lemon” to identify targeted sounds. While reading Is it Hot? in the “Reading/Writing Companion,” students circle words with the targeted letter/sound in the beginning position and underline words with the targeted sound in the final position.
In Unit 8, students use their practice book to assemble a take-home book titled “Here I Am!” The teacher chorally reads the take-home book with students, and then the students reread the book to review high-frequency words and build fluency. As students are rereading the shared- read text “Dad Got a Job,” they are encouraged to sound out the decodable words and read the high-frequency words.
The materials provide placement assessments and information to assist in foundational skills instruction as well as instruction and direction to support teachers in assessing students’ foundational skills toward grade-level mastery and in planning for small-group instruction and differentiation based on student needs.
Examples include but are not limited to:
The “Placement and Diagnostic Assessment” resource in the publisher materials guides teachers to place students into one of three categories based on their performances on placement and diagnostic assessments: 1, “On Level”; 2, “Approaching Level”; 3, “Beyond Level.” The resource provides associated materials for each of the categories. Initial placement decisions for Kindergarten are made based off of the “Phonological Awareness Subtest” and “Letter Naming Fluency Assessment” or the “Listening Comprehension Tests.” Materials emphasize using multiple measures in the assessment process, noting: “The process starts with measurement and scoring (test results, observations). The next step is to compare and interpret the information you have gathered. The third step is to make instructional decisions based on your conclusions. This process is ongoing.” The “Assessment Planning and Pacing Guide” is provided to guide teachers to utilize the assessments at specific points throughout the year to both screen and monitor students’ foundational skills knowledge. The materials also provide alignment information for “DIBELS Next” and “TPRI” screeners to the publisher materials.
For each assessment listed in the Placement and Diagnostic Assessment, the materials provide sections titled “Instructions for Administering the Assessment,” “Directions for Scoring,” and the assessment itself. Prior to a specific subset of tests, the materials include sections titled “How to Use the Assessment,” which notes the time(s) of year the assessment should be administered and in what manner the assessment should be administered (whole group, informally, individually, etc.); and “How to Interpret the Results,” which notes more general trends in planning and differentiation needs for varying levels of student performance.
During or immediately after the “Start Smart” unit, materials note that a foundational skills diagnostic assessment—including phonemic awareness, sight-word fluency/high-frequency words, and alphabet recognition using letter naming fluency—a phonics survey, and leveled passages can be used to determine reading level and comprehension abilities. The Placement and Diagnostic Assessment provides guidance on how to interpret the results of each specific assessment. Students are placed into one of the three categories previously mentioned, and the student’s online course dashboards then indicate relevant leveled reads and activities according to the student’s level. The materials also reference “Tier 2 Intervention Online PDFs” to fill in skill gaps as needed.
At the beginning of each unit, the teacher uses the “Data Dashboard” to gather individual student data for information to be used in grouping students. There are recommendations to extend learning for students performing above level and support for students that are performing below level. The “Daily Check for Success” results are recorded in an online rubric, and the materials provide grouping options based on those results. The “Online Assessment Center” provides an “Item Analysis Report” and a “Standard Analysis Report.” The Data Dashboard has “Activity Reports,” “Skills Reports,” and “Progress Reports.” The teacher is guided to online resources for reteaching. “Running Records” guide the teacher to use the student’s instructional reading level for regrouping. Students below a certain level receive reteaching in specific below-level areas.
In Units 4 and 8, the materials provide the teacher with the next steps based on the data that has been collected from multiple sources throughout the unit, including formal and informal assessments. Teachers are given guidance to make regrouping decisions by checking student progress, determine how English Learners are progressing, and consider whether students are ready to “Level Up” or “Accelerate.” Teachers are also given guidance on whether to review or reinforce particular skills or concepts to reteach them, target instruction to meet children’s strengths/needs, or determine which lessons to provide to different groups of children. Additionally, the teacher is provided with reteaching opportunities based on skills that have been assessed in the lessons. For example, in Unit 4, when the teacher assesses the student on their phonemic awareness, the teacher focuses on whether the student can isolate and blend the targeted sound. If they cannot, then the teacher is prompted to reteach the tested phonemic awareness skills using specific lessons in the “Phonemic Awareness” PDF.
The materials regularly and systematically offer assessment opportunities that genuinely measure student progress as indicated by the program’s scope and sequence. The materials include both formal and informal assessment opportunities throughout each unit and provide teachers with guidance and direction to respond to individual students’ literacy needs.
Examples include but are not limited to:
The materials contain daily, end-of-week, and end-of-unit formal and informal assessments that provide data to the teacher to be used for whole-class, small-group, and individualized targeted instruction. The materials contain intervention and reteaching resources provided in small- group lessons and “Intervention Online PDFs.” At the end of each week, a chart is provided with a breakdown of skill categories (such as phonological awareness, onset and rime blending, etc.) with correlating TEKS and how the skills are assessed informally within the program. The Kindergarten “Teacher’s Editions” contain informal assessment opportunities through a weekly “Check for Success” list with specific look-fors in formatively assessing students. Materials provide teacher guidance in response to student needs, including activities and additional exercises within the “Practice Book” and/or the “Reading/Writing Companion.” After every three weeks of instruction, materials provide opportunities to assess foundational skills taught in the unit. After every six weeks of instruction, a more comprehensive assessment of comprehension skills, foundational skills, high-frequency words, and category words is provided. Additional assessment options include a “Fluency Assessment” over letter naming fluency, phoneme segmentation fluency, and sight word fluency. “Running Records” can be used to determine the instructional reading level for each student (approaching, on, or beyond grade level).
At the end of Unit 1, Week 1, the “Making the Most of Assessment Results” notes that the week’s Checks for Success informally assessed the following foundational literacy skills: phonemic awareness (“Can children isolate and blend the targeted sound?”), phonics (“Can children match /m/ to the letter Mm?”), and high-frequency words (“Can children recognize and read the high-frequency word?”). After each question, the materials note “If not…” and provide recommended reteaching opportunities.
In Unit 3, as students are engaging in the shared-reading text Tim Can Tip It, the teacher tells students to read and point to each word in the sentence on the page to informally assess student identification of separate words within a sentence. After a daily “Word Work” lesson on reading words with the letters m, a, s, p, and t, the teacher records student progress in the online rubric. The teacher determines if children can segment words into phonemes and read words with the /m/m, /a/a, /s/s, /p/p and /t/t. There are resources in the small-group activities for students that meet the criteria and for those who do not. The Unit 3 end-of-unit test assesses phonemic awareness as well. The teacher directs students to point to the row of pictures where they see a tree and listen as the teacher says the word cup. The teacher asks students what the ending sound of the word cup is and tells students to listen as the teacher says the words sip, cut, and pack. The teacher directs students to draw a circle around the picture with the same ending sound as the word cup.
At the end of the Kindergarten practice book, there are five concepts-of-print checklists for students to use based on their level of reading knowledge throughout the year. Each checklist contains sentences related to concepts of print for students to monitor in their reading. For example, Checklist 1 includes questions such as “Did I hold the book so it’s right side up? Did I identify the front cover of a book? Did I identify the title page of a book? Did I identify the back cover of a book?”
The materials meet the criteria for including supports for students who demonstrate proficiency above grade level. There are planning and learning opportunities for students with literacy skills above those expected at grade level; these opportunities include extensions and differentiation. Ideas for differentiating and scaffolds are included throughout the daily instructional schedule, and there are opportunities for additional leveled instruction in skills and concepts taught in a whole-group setting.
Examples include but are not limited to:
Throughout all units, the materials include call-out boxes titled “Gifted and Talented” for students to extend their reading, research areas of interest, and write about what they have learned. Sidebars provide tips throughout the daily instructional schedule and small-group plans for students beyond grade level. The materials allow teachers to provide challenging questions during discussion or tasks after instruction, and the students are able to self-identify when, and if, they are ready to participate in these activities. By rereading the “Shared Read” or “Anchor Text” multiple times, the teacher can take the discussion to deeper levels of understanding. The materials also include small-group differentiation lessons, which take all literacy skills into higher levels of depth or complexity by offering challenging texts, open-ended tasks, and online access to activities. At the end of each week of instruction, there are opportunities for the teacher to assess and gather information on student progress to plan for the next week or unit; summative assessment opportunities are included at the end of the unit, testing comprehension, high-frequency words, phonemic awareness, phonics, fluency, and vocabulary.
In Unit 1, students read the above-level fiction text Come and Play! using the comprehension strategy of “asking questions” while they read. Leveled questions are provided for students to respond to the text afterward. To extend their learning, students can explain why inviting new friends to share their activities is a good idea; they include how it helps them and the people they invite. Students share their ideas, decide which ones they think are most important, and explain why.
In Unit 3, after a grammar lesson on sentences, students are challenged to create sentences for more than one of each sentence type. After a lesson on categories of words specific to food, students are challenged to name other food words and use them in place of the words in the poem read previously.
In Unit 8, students engage with the text My Trip to Yellowstone during their small-group reading time; this text is intentionally selected for students who are reading above grade level. After reading and analyzing the texts, students think about why people would like to visit Yellowstone. Pairs make a list of things they can see and do there, and they make a travel brochure to display for their classmates.
In Unit 10, there are numerous sidebars and tips for students who are above grade level. Along with the “Suggested Lesson Plan,” there is guidance for the teacher to use the “Check for Success” to determine each student’s needs; activities are provided for students that are beyond grade level. For example, with a partner, students challenge each other to read sentences in the text. “Differentiated Writing” suggests giving students options to complete their writing by drawing or labeling the picture, changing the label, using complete sentence frames, writing or revising one sentence, or writing or revising more than one sentence.
The materials provided meet the criteria for including supports for students who demonstrate proficiency below grade level. There are planning and learning opportunities for students with literacy skills below those expected at grade level; these opportunities include extensions and differentiation throughout the daily instructional schedule. There are also opportunities for additional instruction in skills and concepts taught in a whole-group setting. Materials include embedded supports in the “Teacher Edition” for students who demonstrate proficiency below grade level, specifically through small-group instruction, opportunities for teachers to remediate skills in reading and writing, and targeted intervention, including Tier 2 resources.
Examples include but are not limited to:
Throughout all units, teachers provide varying levels of questions during discussion or tasks after instruction, and the students are able to self-identify when, and if, they are ready to participate in these activities. By rereading the “Big Book” multiple times, the teacher can take the discussion to deeper levels of understanding for all students. The materials also include small-group differentiation lessons to practice specific literacy skills that may prevent students from reaching grade-level mastery, while still modifying tasks or instruction to grant access to grade-level content and skills. With leveled readers, there are activities for phonological/phonemic awareness, phonics, oral vocabulary, high-frequency words, and comprehension. Additional supports for students approaching grade level include giving students additional practice with a skill after it has been taught whole class, reading passages with students and working through the questions with them, students drawing a picture for their writing and dictating their sentences to the teacher, or students listening to a selection after it has been read during class to support comprehension. At the end of each week of instruction, there are opportunities for the teacher to assess and gather information on student progress to plan for the next week or unit. At the end of the unit, summative assessment opportunities are included for comprehension, high-frequency words, phonemic awareness, phonics, fluency, and vocabulary.
In the “Start Smart” unit, lessons provide support in early foundational skills: “Oral Language and Concepts of Print,” “Phonological and Phonemic Awareness,” “Phonics,” “Listening Comprehension,” “High-Frequency Words,” and “Writing.”
In Unit 3, sidebars throughout the Teacher Edition indicate, “If children struggle with accuracy, have them start at the beginning of the sentence and correct any errors. If children struggle with rate, model an appropriate rate as you read, and then have them repeat.”
In Unit 4, with the teacher, students read in a small-group setting based on their reading level and skill development. All of the books are related to the same theme (which relates back to the “Essential Question” and the read-aloud), but the books are at different levels, and the small-group instruction varies to meet the needs of the students. For example, students who are demonstrating skills below grade level are reading the text You Cook, which is at a beginning reader Lexile level, and they begin with foundational skills where the teacher models how to handle the book and points out features such as the front and back cover of the book. The teacher also models pointing to and reading each word slowly.
In Unit 6, there are numerous sidebars and tips for students who are approaching grade level. “Differentiate Reading” suggests having students listen to the selection after reading it orally to deepen comprehension. “Access Complex Texts” gives tips for text features within the text that may be hard to understand. “Check For Success” boxes are included in the various components of the instruction schedule, such as Listening Comprehension, High-Frequency Words, and “Word Work”; these give guidance for the teacher to differentiate with small-group instruction related to the skill or concept students may be struggling with. “Corrective Feedback” provides support for incorrect responses.
In Unit 8, instruction is differentiated in many ways, including allowing students to listen to a selection after reading it in class to develop comprehension, providing more opportunities for students to practice identifying prepositions before they write sentences using prepositions, reading each passage with students and working through the questions together, or providing sentence starters to support students as they work through the writing process.
Materials include accommodations for linguistics commensurate with various levels of English language proficiency as defined by the ELPS, with grade-appropriate scaffolds as defined by the Kindergarten ELAR TEKS. Specific first language supports and vocabulary supports are provided.
Evidence includes but is not limited to:
Throughout the materials, supports are included in the literature “Big Book,” interactive read- aloud cards, anchor and shared-read texts, phonemic awareness activities, phonics-related tasks, the high-frequency word routine, grammar lessons, and other literacy routines. Each section is divided into three levels based on students’ English Learner (EL) needs: “Beginning,” “Intermediate,” and “Advanced/Advanced High”; sometimes, there is a sidebar that also offers “Newcomer” support.
Throughout all units, support for vocabulary development is targeted to whole-group instruction. The weekly plans include sidebars with tips for ELs within the various lesson components, including introducing concepts, phonics, comprehension, speaking, vocabulary, writing, and grammar. A routine that is age-appropriate for Kindergarten students is included as a year-long plan for building oral vocabulary. Teachers can use the “Visual Vocabulary Cards” to define, give an example, and ask a question related to the vocabulary term; also, a photograph on one side of the card provides a visual representation.
Unit 1 includes the leveled reader The Mouse and the Moose, with a short lesson specifically tailored for ELs. Students read the text, complete tasks broken down by various levels of English language proficiency, discuss certain points with a partner, and discuss comprehension questions as a group. It is noted at the end of the lesson that, if students can read Mouse and Moose ELL (“English Language Learner”) Level with fluency and correctly answer questions, then they will read a more detailed version of the story (the on-grade-level version of the same text).
In Unit 3, as the small group reads Go, Nat! the teacher reminds students that the text is a fiction story and guides them to look at the book cover and title to predict what it is about. The teacher uses the Visual Vocabulary Cards to pre-teach the vocabulary and gives students a summary of the text: “Nat is playing baseball. He follows the rules of the game.” As students read the text, the teacher supports the development of comprehension skills, such as key details and visualization, with scaffolded questions and think-alouds for each proficiency level.
In Unit 4, students are provided scaffolded support based on English proficiency levels as they practice high-frequency words that have been taught in the classroom. For example, when supporting Beginning ELs, the teacher models using the word you when talking to someone (such as “What do you see?” and “I see you.”) With Intermediate ELs, the teacher points to each word as they read the first sentence; students repeat the sentence and then point to the word you within the sentence. Advanced and Advanced High ELs work with a partner to take turns reading the sentences and pointing to each word as they read.
In Unit 10, cognates are given for academic vocabulary: dialogue/diálogo and pronoun/pronombres. The “Oral Vocabulary Routine” provides Visual Vocabulary Cards and offers steps to ensure students learn the vocabulary. The steps include defining the word, providing an example, and using the word in a question.
The materials include assessments and guidance for teachers and administrators to monitor progress, including interpreting and acting on data. The materials provide multiple opportunities for teachers to assess students using formative and summative assessments. The assessments include scoring information. Guidance is provided for responding to student performance through the creation of instructional groups and suggestions for further instruction.
Examples include but are not limited to:
Throughout all units, student learning is compared to a benchmark in the “Check for Success” sidebars: “Can the student…? Yes or No.” If the answer to the question is “No,” the materials include a reteaching activity for students. If the answer is “Yes,” the materials include a review activity for students working at grade level and an extension activity for students working above grade level. At the end of each unit, the materials provide generalized steps for interpreting data and making decisions. Teachers can compare informal and formal data and use resources from the materials, such as the “English Learner Benchmark Assessment” or “Data Dashboard” recommendations, to help determine which lessons to provide to groups of students and how to group and regroup students.
A “Diagnostic and Placement Assessment” can be used to assess each child’s fluency level and compare students to national fluency norms. Fluency passages are used to determine oral reading fluency rate, oral reading accuracy, and prosody level correlated to national norms. For students performing below level, a “Placement Decisions” chart in the Diagnostic and Placement Assessment provides guidance on additional tests to best determine each child’s specific needs.
After every three weeks of instruction, the materials provide opportunities to assess the foundational skills taught in the unit. After every six weeks of instruction, a comprehensive assessment examines the students’ comprehension skills, foundational skills, high-frequency words, and category words. Additional assessment options include a fluency assessment for letter naming fluency, phoneme segmentation fluency, and sight word fluency. “Running Records” can be used to determine the instructional reading level for each student (approaching, on, or above grade level).
In Unit 3, after a discussion identifying key details in a story, students write two key details in their “Reading/Writing Companion.” The Check for Success sidebar points to specific pages in the “Teacher Edition” containing small-group lessons to respond if students can or cannot identify key details.
In Unit 8, the teacher is provided with “next steps” based on the data collected from multiple sources throughout the unit, including formal and informal assessments. The materials provide guidance on making regrouping decisions by checking student progress, determining the progress of English Learners, and considering whether students are ready to “Level Up” or “Accelerate.” The materials also provide guidance on whether to reteach, review, or reinforce particular skills or concepts; target instruction to meet children’s strengths/needs; or determine which lessons to provide to groups of students.
In Unit 10, the three-week assessment skills include “Syllable Segmentation,” “Phoneme Identity,” “Blending and Substitution,” /u/ u_e, “High-Frequency Words,” “Spelling,” and “Comprehension” focused on plot. The practice book pages, response board, digital activities, word sorts, checklists, and rubrics all provide informal opportunities to assess students. The assessment results can be used for grouping students.
The materials include year-long plans and supports for teachers to identify the needs of students and opportunities to provide differentiated instruction to meet the needs of a range of learners, ensuring grade-level success. Materials provide an overarching plan for teachers to engage students in multiple groupings, and the plan is comprehensive and attentive to differentiation through many opportunities. Substantial support is given through annotations, sidebar supports, and call-outs in the “Teacher Edition.” Annotations within the Teacher Edition are comprehensive and thorough; a novice teacher would have the guidance needed to implement the materials. Materials include annotations and supports for engaging students, and components are included for implementing ancillary resource materials and progress monitoring. The annotations and ancillary materials provide support for learning and assistance for teachers. Materials contain an emphasis on “Social-Emotional Learning.” Teachers have materials and comprehensive support to create a classroom community that promotes literacy.
Examples include but are not limited to:
Throughout all units, the program’s philosophy, “Teach It Your Way,” allows for embedded differentiation based on students’ needs. Tips are provided for students who are approaching grade level, on grade level, and beyond grade level as well as for English Learners (ELs). Teachers have the opportunity to group students at different levels or provide differentiation based on data analysis throughout the year; support is provided throughout multiple components of literacy instruction, such as small-group reading, phonics support, vocabulary support, independent reading and writing, and research and inquiry. Targeted support, which includes Tier 2 resources, is provided for students who need additional instruction and rehearsal of skills. Materials emphasize Social-Emotional Learning, and teachers have materials and comprehensive support to create a classroom community that promotes literacy. The “Teaching the Whole Child” section states that the lessons and sidebars on classroom culture “set the stage for collaboration.” The “Resources” section describes ancillary materials that are available for small groups and for guided reading lessons; the scope and sequence provides a year-long plan of how learning is sequenced and spiraled, thus allowing teachers to make short- and long-term plans for groupings. Materials provide opportunities and supports for teachers in identifying students’ needs.
In Unit 3, the class begins a discussion about a photograph in the “Reading/Writing Companion,” which shows children playing soccer. The teacher asks students to work with a partner to tell what they think the children are doing and what rules might they follow. Scaffolded questions for three EL levels are included. After the whole-class read-aloud, students switch back to working with partners to write a funny part in the story and a rule they follow while at school.
In Unit 4, when reviewing the grammar skill of using adjectives, the teacher is provided with the option to review the skill in small groups to differentiate for different levels of learners. For students who are approaching grade-level learning, the teacher is instructed to provide more opportunities to practice identifying adjectives before students write sentences containing adjectives. Students who are on and beyond grade-level learning can work on writing sentences instead of having more opportunities to practice orally. For ELs, the teacher is prompted to look at the “Language Transfers” handbook to identify grammatical forms that may cause difficulties.
In Unit 6, the teacher is given the option of teaching a phonics lesson in small groups rather than the whole group. During a shared-reading activity, students read chorally with the teacher and complete the “Reading/Writing Companion” pages independently. In a “Respond to the Text” activity, students form groups for each of the four seasons to find the central idea of the selection. The groups share the details they learned about their season, and students work in partners to make connections.
In Unit 8, after students engage with the literature “Big Book” When Daddy’s Truck Picks Me Up, the teacher can easily differentiate instruction by allowing students approaching grade level and ELs the opportunity to listen to the audio version of the text multiple times in order to develop comprehension.
The materials meet the criteria, providing implementation support for teachers and administrators, including a TEKS-aligned scope and sequence outlining the essential knowledge and skills that are taught and the specific order in which they are presented to build across grade levels. The scope and sequence includes a 180-day schedule of literacy instruction for the school year, which could be adapted to a 220-day schedule.
Examples include but are not limited to:
The “Teacher Edition” includes a scope and sequence of ten units (each three weeks long). Each unit begins with an overview of the texts and concepts taught in the unit and the student expectations for the components of the unit. At the end of each week and unit of instruction, there are “Wrap-Up” activities, “Progress Monitoring,” and “Summative Assessments” to guide the teacher in planning interventions, and enrichment and extension activities. At the end of every two units, there are “Show What You Learned,” “Extend Your Learning,” and “Track Your Progress” activities that the teacher has the choice of using, as needed, to review and reteach skills, strategies, and genres from the units. While these extension activities are not specifically planned for in the scope and sequence, they allow for extending the number of instructional days to 180 or more.
The materials include a comprehensive list of Kindergarten English Language Arts TEKS correlations and corresponding units with page numbers in which the indicated TEKS are covered. Additionally, a correlation list for Kindergarten Social Studies and Science TEKS covered in the units is included. Within each lesson, TEKS are listed alongside the objective.
The text complexity supplemental resource provides information on the texts that are taught throughout the year, including their quantitative complexity levels and how they are incorporated into the units. The first unit includes implementation support to establish class routines related to texts, vocabulary, mini-lessons, writing, fluency, and more. The information provided explicitly explains the effectiveness of the routine and how to use the routine with students.
Annotations and sidebar support are included throughout the materials to support teachers and administrators in program implementation. Examples of support for implementation found in the Teacher Edition include instructional routines (“Oral Vocabulary,” “Close Reading,” “Retelling,” etc.); English Learner (EL) scaffolds for the Beginning, Intermediate, Advanced, and Advanced High EL levels; supports for “Differentiating Reading Instruction” and tips for “Accessing Complex Text and Text Features”; “Extend the Lesson”; and “Collaborative Conversations.”
The materials have a visual design that is neither distracting nor chaotic. Materials include appropriately designed white space that supports and does not distract from student learning. The pictures and graphics are supportive of student learning and engagement without being visually distracting.
Examples include but are not limited to:
Throughout all units, the spaces for students to write include age-appropriate and developmentally appropriate lines and spacing as well as areas for students to draw. Certain fonts and graphics are used consistently throughout the workbook, which promotes student understanding of directions. The “Reading/Writing Companion” includes photos; many feature children of a similar age as the students and are colorful and engaging. The charts and graphs provided on the pages align with what the students learn, and they adapt to meet their academic needs; icons indicate actions.
Unit 1 includes short directions with corresponding icons. Students listen to a part of the story (listed with a “listening child” icon), talk about key details (listed with a “two children talking” icon), and write one key detail (listed with a “pencil” icon).
Unit 2 makes appropriate use of white space. The pages are appealing and interesting, without distractions. The materials space items to allow for a clear understanding of the intended idea or concept of the page; there is appropriate space in areas that require a student response, whether in print or drawing. The “Essential Question” asks “How do tools help us to explore?” Along with the question, a photo showing a girl with a magnifying glass covers the entire page; it is specific to the purpose (tools), colorful, attractive, and appealing.
In Unit 3, after discussing the context of a picture on one page, the student Reading/Writing Companion, at the top of the following page, has a set of three-step directions and a large white box outlined in blue for students to draw themselves playing a game. The bottom of the page has one printed line on which students are to write the rules of a game they play. On the following page, students write text evidence for parts of the story that were funny and not funny. The page includes lines for students to write and a small box labeled “Text Evidence” in a bold blue font; there is also a graphic of a magnifying glass to record the number of the page where they found their details in the text.
In Unit 8, students are provided with ample white space within graphic organizers to organize their thinking about texts and writing topics. For example, when reading the text When Daddy’s Truck Picks Me Up, students write about the plot by discussing the beginning, middle, and end of the story. Students have three large areas of white space to share their thinking through drawings and words. This amount of space is not visually distracting to students and gives them enough space to communicate their thoughts, considering their developmental level.
The materials’ student-facing edition contains four main parts: “My Binder,” “Collaborate,” “Resources”, and “School to Home.” My Binder shows students assigned to-do lists, work, and tests. Students can collaborate via discussion boards and on projects with other students in the class as assigned by teachers. Resources for students include “My Books,” texts available as eBooks, “Skills Practice,” games, graphic organizers, and other ancillary materials to support student learning. Students can listen to the eBooks and mark up text, including highlighting and taking notes, as well as participate in digital mini-lessons and watch “Collaborative Conversation” videos that model skills for students. The School to Home tab can feature letters from teachers, practice activities for parents/guardians to work on with their child that connects to the learning done in class, and other messages. Students can access each section of their home page using the icons at the bottom; this way, even young children who are developing readers can navigate the technology components in the materials.
Read the Full Report for Technology
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Read the Full Report for Professional Learning Opportunities
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Read the Full Report for Additional Language Supports
(pdf, 175.36 KB)