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The TRR reports for K–8 and high school science are now available. The new Instructional Materials Review and Approval (IMRA) rubrics for K–3 and 4–8 English language arts and reading, K–3 and 4–6 Spanish language arts and reading, and K–12 mathematics are now available for review. Provide public comment through December 15, 2023, or sign up for a November focus group.
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
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ELPS Student %
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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
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The materials provide a variety of texts that are well-crafted and represent the quality of content, language, and writing that is produced by experts in various disciplines, including authors such as Amy Krouse Rosenthal, Jon Katz, and Meg Medina. In addition, the materials cover content that is engaging to second-grade students. Materials also include increasingly complex traditional, contemporary, classical, and diverse texts as students progress through each module.
Examples include but are not limited to:
The William Hoy Story: How A Deaf Baseball Player Changed the Game by Nancy Churin is an informational text in which the storyline, vivid pictures, and rich language of the time period give readers a glimpse into the life of William Hoy while teaching them the valuable lesson that everyone has something to give.
Goldie Locks and the Three Dinosaurs retold by Mo Willems is a fairy tale retelling of the classic “Three Bears” story. It has a predictable text pattern and a plot familiar to students, which enables them to experience a new text while drawing on background knowledge from related traditional texts.
Whoosh!: Lonnie Johnson’s Super-Soaking Stream of Inventions by Chris Barton and Don Tate is a biography about the inventor of the Super Soaker™ water gun. The cover features the word “Whoosh!” written diagonally, in large font. Water guns are fun to play with for primary students, and onomatopoeia and alliteration are whimsical and appealing to the ear.
Mango, Abuela, and Me by Meg Medina and Angela Dominguez is a realistic fiction story about a girl and her grandmother who teach each other words in their first language, which is Spanish, with a parrot’s help.
Pepita and the Bully by Ofelia Dumas Lachtman and Alex Pardo Delange is a contemporary story in which a little girl must confront and learn to get along with her school bully. Spanish phrases are included in the text.
Rabbit’s Snow Dance by James and Joseph Bruchac is a retelling of a traditional Iriquois fable about the importance of patience and obedience.
A Perfect Season for Dreaming by Benjamin Alire Saenz is an authentic Spanish fantasy story about a grandfather who shares his vivid dreams with his granddaughter. Each page starts with text written in English, followed by the Spanish translation. Illustrations on the page are directly related to the dreams being described.
The materials include a variety of text types and genres across content areas that meet the requirements for the Grade 2 English Language Arts and Reading TEKS. Materials also include opportunities for students to analyze the use of print and graphic features of a variety of texts.
Examples of literary texts include but are not limited to:
Mango, Abuela, and Me by Meg Medina (realistic fiction)
Serious Farm by Tim Egan (fantasy)
Goldilocks and the Three Dinosaurs by Mo Willems (fairy tale)
“Whatever the Weather,” included in myBook (poetry)
A Crow, A Lion, and Mouse! Oh, My! retold by Crystal Hubbard (drama)
Examples of informational texts include but are not limited to:
Uncommon Traveler: Mary Kingsley in Africa by Don Brown (biography)
Ice by Julie Haydon (scientific nonfiction)
Kids for President, included in myBook (persuasive)
Great Leaders, included in myBook (persuasive)
The Best Habitat for Me, included in myBook (opinion)
Examples of print and graphic features include but are not limited to:
The Story of Snow: The Science of Winter’s Wonder by Mark Cassino and Jon Nelson features diagrams, real photos, labels, captions, and headings to describe the characteristics of snowflakes.
Miss Moore Thought Otherwise by Jan Pinborough is a narrative nonfiction text with vivid illustrations of the late 1800s.
From Seed to Pine Tree: Following the Life Cycle by Suzanne Slade features a table of contents, a map and map key, captions, a life-cycle diagram, flow charts, and a glossary.
The materials provide texts, including read-aloud texts and shared reading, that are appropriately challenging and are at an appropriate level of complexity to support students at the Grade 2 level. The texts are accompanied by a text complexity analysis provided by the publisher. Read-aloud and shared-reading texts are above the complexity level of what second-grade students can read independently.
Examples include but are not limited to:
The “Teacher’s Guide” for each week includes two pages titled “Preview Lesson Texts.” This section provides information on “Guided Reading Level,” “Lexile Level,” and text complexity for the introductory read-aloud and shared-reading texts. Text complexity ratings include “simple, slightly complex, moderately complex, and very complex.” The materials provide a rationale for why the text was selected and an explanation to support the overall text rating, providing qualitative information. The text complexity analysis is located in the “Guided Reading Benchmark Assessment” section to determine the students’ level for guided reading groups. Additionally, the table of contents for the “Rigby Leveled Library” includes titles and levels. All leveled readers include a text complexity analysis and targeted behaviors to look for at each guided reading level. Each text has a Lexile Level correlated to it, which is noted either in the description of the book or on the back cover of the book.
Module 1 includes the book Clark the Shark by Bruce Hale. A description of the text states: “Fantasy stories often use unrealistic elements to share relatable life lessons. Through this silly story, children will read a book about a shark who loves school but must learn to balance his enthusiasm with learning school rules.” The quantitative features of this text are a Lexile Level of 500L and a Guided Reading Level of M. Qualitative features to consider include identifying the features of fantasy and describing the importance of the setting. Module 1 also includes Meet the Dogs of Bedlam Farm by Jon Katz, an informational text about four working dogs that each play a different role on the farm where they live. This text has a Lexile Level of 600L, which is above the complexity for this grade level.
In Module 2, the text If You Find a Rock by Peggy Christian has a Lexile Level of 740L and a Guided Reading Level of J. This is an informational text from which students learn about the different shapes and sizes of rocks as well as their uses. Text features are included to facilitate understanding of information presented.
In Module 3, the text Mango, Abuela, and Me by Meg Medina is a realistic fiction story about a girl and her grandmother who teach each other words in their first languages. It has a Lexile Level of 560L and a Guided Reading Level of M. Qualitative features to consider include English and Spanish phrases, plot elements, and theme.
In Module 5, the text Whoosh!: Lonnie Johnson’s Super-Soaking Stream of Inventions by Lisa Trumbauer has a Lexile Level of 820L. This informational text explains snowboarding and the equipment needed for this sport. Qualitative features of the text to consider include bold print, photographs, labels, and diagrams.
In Module 6, the text The Story of Snow by Mark Cassino has a Lexile Level of 630L. This informational text explains how snow crystals and snowflakes form. Graphic features and content area words should be considered as qualitative features of the text.
The materials contain questions and tasks that build conceptual knowledge, are text-dependent, and prompt students to synthesize new information through myriad read-aloud texts, writing tasks, and “Inquiry and Research” projects. Formal and informal assignments and activities focus on texts students are reading/listening to through read-alouds, shared reading, and/or videos and require close attention to the meaning and inferences as students demonstrate comprehension. Considering that each module contains a central theme and an “Essential Question” that connects to all the text selections within a module, questions and activities grow students’ understanding of topics and literacy skills over the course of each unit. Since each text has two or more stopping points for student discussions, materials provide opportunities for students to evaluate and discuss information from multiple places within a text.
Examples include but are not limited to:
Module 1 uses the “Knowledge Map” to organize the key ideas learned in the module. The Essential Question—“How can being a good citizen make a difference to others?”—anchors student thinking throughout the module, and students refer back to the question and Knowledge Map after each text read. Later in the module, during the “Tabletop Minilesson” for Clark and the Shark, the lesson card provides instruction and differentiated practice for understanding the theme. Students are asked:
In Module 2, students are taught “Notice and Note Signposts” using the anchor charts and texts in the modules. In Lesson 1, students use “Anchor Chart 56: Contrasts and Contradictions” to read Many Kinds of Matter. As students are reading, they answer the signpost question “What does this make me wonder about?” They must use text clues as they read to formulate their answer.
In Module 3, students answer the Essential Question “How can people work out disagreements?” During Week 1, students find key details about conflict. In Week 2, students identify the most important idea about communication. Finally, students gather information about learning to work it out. Students are able to put each key detail together to develop a new understanding of how people work out disagreements.
In Module 4, the texts A Crow, a Lion, and a Mouse! Oh, My! and Hollywood Chicken have students recognize characteristics of a fable; describe and understand plot elements, including the main events, conflict, and resolution; identify clues about a story’s structure; and discuss the text through drawing and writing. Students also generate and evaluate questions about the text before, during, and after reading to deepen understanding and gain information.
In Module 7, students read I Am Helen Keller and learn about why Hellen Keller was an important person in history and ways that she made a difference. Students synthesize information they learned to decide why this person is important to learn about and how this can apply to their lives. Module 7 introduces students to a variety of people with different experiences, using biographies to answer the Essential Question “How do our experiences shape our lives?” Students can choose to write a list of rules for biographies or create a poster to show a life lesson they have learned.
In Module 8, students synthesize the text Don’t Touch Me, with teacher support. The teacher uses “Anchor Chart 9: Synthesize” to frame the lesson, and students consider the most important portions of the text. Students pull the most important details from the text to synthesize what the information they learned means to them as a reader; they depend upon visuals and words to provide the evidence.
In Module 9, students view an image while listening to a passage about caves read aloud. After listening, students must determine what each section of the read-aloud is mostly about. Students combine details given throughout the story to create a new idea, helping them understand the central idea of the passage. Students use the following sentence frames to guide their thinking: “At first,….” “Then….” “Now….” “I think….”
The materials include questions and tasks that require students to analyze literary/textual elements of texts including, but not limited to the author's purpose, elements of plot, theme, comparing and contrasting, and word choice. Students evaluate, make inferences, and draw conclusions about the author’s purpose, compare and contrast purposes of the author’s writing, analyze the author’s choices, and study words and language of texts to support student comprehension.
Examples include but are not limited to:
In Module 1, students read Clark the Shark in which students must study the language and determine why the author chose to write in that manner. The teacher models a think aloud pointing out that Clark’s words look different than other characters' words on the page. The teacher asks the question, “Why does the author do this?” and answers the question with, “I think it is to show the reader how loud Clark is when he talks. I wonder if Clark might cause a problem in the story.” This think aloud leads to the “Notice and Note” signpost of “Words of the Wiser” in which students must recognize and infer what the meaning of the words of advice is when Ms. Inky Dyk states, “There’s a time and a place for everything.” The teacher questions the students, “What’s the life lesson and how might it affect Clark?”
In Module 4, students study the figurative language within the text and create visual images of idioms, similes, and hyperbole to make meaning of the story Hollywood Chicken. Students must consider why the author would use figurative language instead of the literal meaning intended. When the author chooses the words, “She’s as busy as a bee” instead of the literal language “She is busy,” the teacher asks the following questions: “What is she being compared to? Do the words mean what they say? Why do you think the author compares the girl to a bee?”
Another example occurs when the author uses the idiom, “It’s raining cats and dogs” instead of the literal language “It's raining very hard.” Students then ask themselves the following question: “What do I picture in my mind when I think of dogs and cats falling as raindrops?” The teacher explains that students can use the details and the mental image to draw a conclusion about what the idiom means. Students find text evidence of figurative language during reading and record their findings on a sticky note which will be posted on the anchor chart for students to review as they connect to further learning.
Module 5 features a read-aloud titled Seed by Seed: The Legend and Legacy of Johnny Appleseed where students focus on the figurative language and the use of the author’s words. Students analyze figurative language like “a shhh-hhh like whispered secrets for the bees to carry off.” Students are asked what this means and how it impacts the story: “Why does the author include this language?” Students then deepen their understanding by recognizing this story is a legend, and while legends have some truth to them, they are exaggerated. In the “Tabletop Minilessons: Reading Lesson 25,” the teacher reminds students that authors of informational texts organize the information in a way that fits the topic and their purpose for writing. In small groups, students review that when an author’s purpose is to tell about events in order and show how one event is connected to the next, the author uses chronological order, like in the text Whoosh!!! Lonnie Johnson Super Soaking Stream of Inventions. Students then use a similar text such as Wilma Rudolph: Against All Odds and Who Are Government Leaders to compare and contrast the stated or implied purposes of different authors’ writing on the same topic as the text Lead the Way.
In Module 6, students review text organization to frame their thinking as they read Wild Weather. Students evaluate why authors use a cause and effect text structure to organize information. The teacher guides students to analyze the text organization by asking the following questions: “What type of wild weather is Sonny asking about? (snow) What does Chuck say is the cause of snowflakes forming? (Water vapor turns into an ice crystal. Then the ice crystals cling together to form a snowflake.) What is the effect of the ground being cold? (The snowflakes pile up on the ground.) Why do you think the author organizes the text with the characters' questions and answers? (The author wants to inform readers about weather and entertain them at the same time. Having the characters explain the information is a fun way to learn about weather.)” Students may use the annotation tools in their ebook to locate specific text evidence of cause and effect.
Module 10 uses May Day as a shared reading. Students access background knowledge, characteristics of the genre, and illustrations to make predictions of what they think the text will be about. While reading, students infer that the author’s purpose of the text is to give information about how May Day is celebrated around the world. Students think, “What does this make me wonder about?” Students must infer why the children hide when they ring the doorbell of their neighbor on May Day and give text evidence by answering, “What text clues did you use?”
The materials include a year-long plan for building academic vocabulary, including ways to apply words in appropriate contexts. Materials also include scaffolds and supports for teachers to differentiate vocabulary development for all learners.
Examples include but are not limited to:
In each module, “Teaching with Instructional Routines: Vocabulary” is designed to “explicitly teach the meaning of academic and topic-related words, provide examples and practice using words in context.” Children pronounce new words, explain the meaning in child-friendly terms, and then apply the word in context by talking about examples. “Vocabulary Cards” designed to support the routine are included with each lesson throughout the program. The resource features academic words with a visual, definition, sentences using the word in context, and discussion prompts. This resource provides a strong scaffold for teachers to teach and develop vocabulary instruction for all learners.
Content vocabulary is introduced and taught using colorful anchor charts. One such example is “Anchor Chart 13: Central Idea,” where students are given a vivid illustration and explanation of the concept main idea or central idea. Students apply the concept in context when they read Meet the Dogs of Bedlam Farm and respond to the text by selecting the dog they think is most important, explaining why it is the most important in the story.
The “Professional Learning Guide” outlines the vocabulary routine and supporting materials. In the “Teaching and Planning” section, the “Vocabulary Instruction” chart outlines various opportunities for students to learn words that span all modules in the program:
In Module 1, in the “Academic Vocabulary: Introduce Oral Language” resource, teachers are directed to use a gradual release model of “I Do, We Do, You Do” as they teach new vocabulary words. The words from this lesson are guards, serious, carefree, guide, and images and they come from the read-aloud text for this week. Along with the routine, teacher guidance is provided in vocabulary research from Blachowicz and Fisher (2004): “Important research-based practices include encouraging students to play with and explore words, actively teaching students new vocabulary, helping students build strategies to learn new words independently, reading to students, and encouraging students to read widely.” In the sidebar “English Learner Support,” teacher accommodations are provided for students at varying levels of English:
Module 4 introduces students to the academic vocabulary words traipsing, varying, and groggy. Students make a connection to entering a new place by saying, “It is easy to get lost when you are traipsing around someplace new” (T296). By making this connection in context, students are able to understand the word. The materials follow an I Do, We Do, You Do model for this vocabulary lesson so that there is a gradual release of responsibility from the teacher to the students.
As students learn about informational texts, they must learn academic vocabulary to support text structures, such as chronological order and procedural text. Students apply these terms in context to the texts Gingerbread for Liberty and Recipe for a Fairy Tale, since both stories are written in chronological order (Module 4). An example where these academic vocabulary terms are revisited can be found in Module 11, where students practice and apply the language of nonfiction through the text Sea Otter Pups. “Anchor Chart 67: Informational Text” describes the text features and structures found in informational text.
In Module 2, students are given six academic vocabulary words. Each word has a provided sentence that illustrates the meaning of the word as well as an example activity. For the word toiled, the sentence is “If you toiled, you worked hard for a long time.” The accompanying activity is “Act It Out”: “Act out cleaning the classroom. I have toiled to clean the classroom.” This structure allows students to apply their understanding in an appropriate context.
In Module 6, the vocabulary routine follows the I Do, We Do, You Do model with words such as scene, monuments, sights, grouchy, freedom, and symbol. Students use “myBook” to create synonyms and antonyms of words used in the texts read. Then, they use the words to complete application activities, such as “Writing a Drama” for the story Monument City; students use the words to help convey meaning to their audience.
In Module 9, students learn the vocabulary vegetation, absorb, and emerge as they learn about plants and gardens. The Get Curious video “A Seed Grows” provides visual support for students who need more scaffolding. The materials also provide additional support for English Learners (ELs) with the following questions and sentence stems:
Module 9 continues the vocabulary routine and scaffolded instruction by asking beginning ELs “Would you read in a quiet corner? Would you dance in a quiet corner?” Intermediate ELs are given sentence frames to complete, such as “Winter might be dreary because…. I expected that….” Advanced ELs are asked “What is the opposite of dreary? Why would you need a tent to go camping?”
The materials include procedures and protocols, along with adequate support to guide teachers through implementation, that foster self-sustained reading as appropriate. Materials provide a plan for students to self-select texts and read independently for sustained periods of time, including planning and accountability for achieving independent reading goals.
Examples include but are not limited to:
Procedures and protocols in Grade 2 are centered around the workshop model. Students engage in a variety of “Literacy Centers,” independent reading, and guided-reading tasks.
The materials include a “Reading Corner” section within the Literacy Centers section of each lesson. Students self-select a book to read independently. The teacher guides students to set a purpose for reading and use the “Reading Log” provided to hold themselves accountable for their learning. The Reading Log includes the following components:
The “Professional Learning Guide” provides a “Manageable Milestones” checklist and a one-page synopsis of “Teaching and Planning Independent Reading,” so teachers can incorporate additional teaching methods into their practice. The synopsis includes lists of texts from which students may self-select based on their level for independent reading. Texts are provided via several resources:
The materials include the following other activity choices for teachers to ask students to complete:
The “Reading Workshop Center Support Guide” includes activities for students to practice skills that reinforce the unit’s learning and keep themselves accountable for what they are reading. For example, in Module 1, the “Options for Independent and Collaborative Work” section states that students choose a task from the independent reading activity; this includes applying reading skills, such as setting, to complete the “Reading Graphic Organizer 18” from a book of their choosing. Also, students seek information from an independent reading book while completing the “Printable: Language Graphic Organizer 1.” In Module 4, students answer “What is the topic of the text? What is the author’s purpose for writing? What happens first, next, and last in the text?” while reading independently; they also complete “Reading Graphic Organizer 21.”
In all modules, teachers are guided to set goals with the students via sentence stems such as “I want to read stories about…. I want to learn about…, and I will…so I can….” Teachers are reminded to periodically revisit these goals. The “Teacher Guide” provides teachers with strategies to help students achieve their goals and to remind them to use strategies when they read. The Teacher Guide includes a rubric for independent reading that allows teachers to identify strengths and areas for development in independent reading.
To connect with parents, the materials provide a “Family Letter” that outlines topics for the module and suggests that parents ask questions after reading that relate to habitats.
Materials provide support for students to compose across text types for a variety of purposes and audiences. Students have opportunities to dictate or write literary texts for multiple purposes and audiences, including poetry using poetry elements and personal narratives that convey their thoughts and feelings about an experience. The materials provide students opportunities to dictate or write informational texts, including procedural texts and reports about a topic. The materials provide students opportunities to dictate or write correspondence, including thank-you notes and letters.
Examples include but are not limited to:
Module 1 kicks off the “Writer’s Workshop” with a personal narrative. Students listen to the text Just a Dream and use “Anchor Chart W7: Elements of a Narrative” to support their understanding of the genre. Students write to respond to the prompt “Write about ways you have helped make the world a better place.” Once students have identified their topic, they work to provide details that will convey their thoughts and feelings in their narrative by answering the guiding questions in “Writer’s Notebook 1.6”:
Module 2 begins by focusing on informational text. Students read the text Uncommon Traveler and then write a descriptive essay on a place they would like to visit. “Anchor Chart W8: Informational Text” and “Display and Engage 2.3a–2.3b” support students’ understanding of the genre. Students are guided through an inquiry process to help them determine their topic (W18–32).
Module 5 continues the study on informational text by asking students to write about what makes them unique. By examining the text Stand Tall, students begin their prewriting activities in “Writer’s Notebook 5.6” and work through the writing process to produce a written piece about what makes them unique (W65–80).
In Module 6 students begin to learn about poetry as they consider the weather and how it impacts people. Students read the mentor text, When the Moon Is Full: A Lunar Year, and pay attention to the weather descriptions in the focal text. Students learn about the elements of poetry, including message, stanza, sensory words, and sound patterns like alliteration, rhythm, rhyme, and onomatopoeia. Students read a model poem to see an example of a poem about weather. Students begin to draft their poems. Students write to respond to the prompt “Write about the weather and you. Describe the weather and how it helps you decide what to do that day.” Students publish their work by creating illustrations and covers for their poems. The guidance provided is to include the following:
In Module 7, students use the “Inquiry and Research Project” to respond to the prompt “What's in Your Autobiography?” Students generate ideas using listing, discussion, and visuals; then, they research, complete, and present an inquiry-based project about facts in their own lives. Students share their final product using the “Share Chair” routine. Guidance for writing is provided for the teacher:
In Module 8, students learn about procedural text. Students learn about time-order or linking words used to show the order of steps in the process. Then, students choose a topic to write about that has steps in the process. Students use “Writer’s Notebook 8.6”—“Prewriting Steps for My Activity”—to record the steps in the process and then turn their writing into paragraph form.
In Module 9, students write a research report about an animal that has a special relationship with another. Students prepare to research by viewing “Anchor Chart W6: Research and Sources,” in which students learn about primary and secondary sources. Students begin by reading the text The Great Kapok Tree. Then they view the example text Elephants Help Others. Students conclude by publishing and sharing their writing.
“Anchor Chart W3: Types of Questions” is used to explain how authors ask questions and do research. Students learn the steps of the research process, including:
Module 10 introduces the difference between notes and letters using “Anchor Chart 10: Correspondence.” Students read the text The Name Jar. Students think about a tradition or cultural experience they have shared with someone else. Students write a thank-you letter to that person by responding to the Display and Engage writing prompt: “Write a thank-you letter to someone you’ve shared a tradition or cultural experience with. Describe the experience and what you learned from it or why it was important” (10.3). Finally, students publish their letters and present them to their classmates.
In Module 11, students discuss the beginning, middle, and end of a narrative, including the following components: characters, setting, problem, and solution. Students read and respond to the focal text, Roller Coaster, by paying attention to how the characters feel throughout the story. Students pay attention to the author’s word choices by focusing on figurative language, descriptive language, and the use of onomatopoeia. Students consider the idea that trying something new can be scary. Students write about the first time they tried something new. Students publish their personal narratives, create an illustration, and share their writing by reading it aloud to the class.
The materials engage students in the writing process to develop text in oral, pictorial, or written form. Students coherently use the elements of the writing process (planning, drafting, revising, editing, and sharing/publishing) to compose text; they draw and brainstorm to generate drafts and plan and organize their drafts by speaking, drawing, or writing.
Examples include but are not limited to:
Module 1 begins by introducing students to story elements: the beginning, middle, and end of a narrative story, characters, setting, problem, and solution. Students read the text Just a Dream by Chris Van Allsburg. Students use “Writer’s Notebook 1.3” to help determine their topic. They fill in the provided chart by determining times they helped friends, helped family, and helped the community. Students consider the central idea of the mentor text. Then, students explore the steps in the writing process: prewrite, draft, revise, edit, publish, and share. Students think about ways they have helped make the world a better place and record their ideas on the prewriting page of “Writer’s Notebook 1.3.” Then, students use “Writer’s Notebook 1.6” to begin organizing the personal narrative into a beginning, middle, and end. Students begin to revise their work by considering word choice. Students meet with peers to give feedback and revise their personal narratives. Finally, students publish and share their personal narratives with the class.
In Module 2, students brainstorm places they would like to visit; they use “Writer’s Notebook 2.5” to record all the places they want to visit and insider information they are able to find about the location, including the source. Students then put a star next to one place on their list. Students write questions about their place, research their place using the inquiry process, and begin drafting. Close attention is paid to adding relevant details to the drafts. The teacher models how to use the information found when researching to revise writing to add details and make it more interesting. Peer proofreading, teacher conferences, and peer feedback are all used to provide feedback for students to add additional details to support the topic they are writing about.
In Module 4, students use the text Do Unto Otters: A Book about Manners to engage in a discussion about the “Golden Rule” and how to be a friend to others. The teacher displays the writing prompt “Write a how-to book about how to make a new friend.” Students brainstorm ideas in their journals about this topic. The teacher uses the flowchart “Display and Engage 4.3”—“How to Make a New Friend”—to consider steps 1–4 in making a friend. Students use the flowchart to record their own steps of how to make a friend, in order; they also set goals for writing by using the checklist provided. The teacher models how to give clear instructions and students begin drafting their how-to informational writing. Students practice how to add detailed illustrations and labels to add interest and information to their writing. Then, in Lesson 9, students study time-order words and revise their writing to show this new learning. In Lessons 10 and 11, students gather in small groups to exchange writing and edit for clarity and precision. Finally, students edit for grammar as they learn about plural nouns and use the editor’s checklist to edit their work. In Lessons 14 and 15, students publish their how-to writing and create covers for their work. Students share their writing with the class and provide positive feedback, revisiting goals to determine what was accomplished.
In Module 5, students brainstorm ideas by creating a web all about characteristics of themselves. Students draw pictures of themselves including hair color and facial features. Then, they take their physical features and connect unique characteristics to them, including talents and interests.
In Module 6 students respond to the prompt “Write about the weather and you. Describe the weather and how it helps you decide what to do that day.” This task helps them begin to learn about poetry and consider the weather and how it impacts people. Students read the mentor text, When the Moon Is Full: A Lunar Year, and pay attention to the weather descriptions in the text. Students learn about the elements of poetry, including message, stanza, sensory words, and sound patterns like alliteration, rhythm, rhyme, and onomatopoeia. Students read a model poem to see an example of a poem about weather. Students begin to draft their poems as a class. After creating the first draft, students learn to incorporate sensory details into poetry. Students conference in small groups and revise their writing. Then, students use the editing checklist to edit their work and create a final draft for the class. Students complete this work by creating illustrations and covers for their work.
Later in the module, students begin brainstorming ideas for an individual weather poem. The teacher uses the word weather and questions students to add what the word makes them think of, how it feels, and how it is different in other parts of the country. By Lesson 8, students are drafting their individual poems; careful attention is paid to ensuring students understand the purpose and audience for which they are writing. After reading “Display and Engage 6.6a” and “6.6b,” the teacher models a think-aloud for students, explaining how the author organizes the poem. After this think-aloud, students continue drafting and revising; edits are modeled and practiced. Students have the opportunity to revise their poems by adding additional details, such as sensory words, to make the meaning of their poem more impactful for the reader. Students engage in conferencing with the teacher and in peer conferencing; finally, they publish their own work.
In Module 7, students generate ideas for an inquiry-based project about facts in their own lives. Students use the “Think, Pair, Share” routine to brainstorm important events in their own lives. They participate in several activities for generating and organizing ideas, write drafts, meet in pairs to make suggestions to each other, make revisions, and share with classmates.
In Module 8, the “Writing Workshop” activities again supply teacher guidance for all parts of the writing process as students write a procedural text. First, students learn important vocabulary and use the text From Seed to Plant to generate ideas. Next, they choose topics and write a draft by focusing on steps in a process. Revising for this module focuses on integrating time-order words. Teachers hold conferences with students to guide them as they prepare their finished pieces. Peers proofread and provide suggestions, and then students publish and share.
In Module 11, when reading the text Roller Coaster, students explore the idea that trying something new can be scary. Students brainstorm about the first time they tried new things. Students use “Writer’s Notebook 11.3” to set goals for their writing. The teacher uses an anchor chart to guide students as they map out the beginning, middle, and end of the mentor text as a model for their writing. Students use “Writer’s Notebook 11.9” to draft the beginning, middle, and end of the narrative writing, including the characters, setting, problem, and solution. Students use the following question words to brainstorm ideas about how to add details to their writing: who, when, where, what, how. Students then meet with peers to give feedback and revise their personal narratives; they also confer with their teacher about their personal narrative and make final edits to their writing using the editor’s checklist. Finally, in Lessons 14 and 15, students publish the final draft of their personal narratives, create an illustration, and share their writing by reading it aloud to the class.
In Module 12, students use “Writer’s Notebook 12.7” to draft the elements of their opinion essay by including ideas and details. The graphic organizer includes a section labeled “Introduction” where students state their opinion; in the “Body” of the organizer, there is a place to record three reasons; the “Conclusion” reminds students to state their conclusion and convince the audience.
Over the course of the year, students are provided opportunities to apply grade-level standard English conventions to their writing. This includes opportunities for the practice and application of the conventions of academic language when speaking and writing, including punctuation and grammar. Grammar, punctuation, and usage are taught systematically, both in and out of context.
Examples include but are not limited to:
The materials contain a “Grammar Minilesson” table of contents, which lays out the grammar mini-lessons for the entire year. Mini-lessons are grouped by topic; topics increase in difficulty throughout the year. Students begin the school year looking at what makes a sentence; they use subjects and predicates and write different types of sentences in Topic 1. By Topic 4, students are focusing on modifiers to sentences and ways to expand sentences using adjectives, adverbs, and prepositional phrases. As students are taught the various grammar lessons, opportunities for practice in and out of context are provided. For example, in “Grammar Minilesson 1.3.3,” students are learning about the different types of sentences. The “Display and Engage 1.3.4a-b” projectable resource is used to provide explanations and examples for students. Using “Printable 1.3.4,” students identify the type of sentence and then rewrite a sentence into another type of sentence. Finally, students use the knowledge gained and edit their drafts to contain different types of sentences. In Module 7, students begin working with commas. Students again use “Display and Engage 5.2.3.a-b” for examples and practice opportunities. Students work through the “Printable Grammar 5.2.3.” As an application piece, to practice the rules for commas learned, students write a short letter that includes a greeting, the date, and a closing. The mini-lessons support the grammar instruction in the “Writing Workshop” on revising and editing. Also, grammar instruction can be delivered based on needs demonstrated in each student’s writing; it can also be taught according to scope and sequence indicated in the weekly planners.
In Module 1, students review nouns and edit a writing draft using nouns for people, places, animals, and things. Using the “Display and Engage: Grammar 2.1.4a” and “2.1.4b” projectables, the teacher reviews with students how to identify the kinds of nouns: a person, animal, place, or thing; and that sentences can have more than one noun. Also, in this module, students work to revise their personal narrative, focusing on word choice. Students edit their own writing for correct capitalization of common and proper nouns.
In Module 3, as students create persuasive texts, they revise their writing focusing on integrating action verbs. Students learn about verb tenses and edit their writing for the correct verb tense. In Lesson 11, students work to integrate adverbs into their writing. Students learn that adverbs help writers clarify their thoughts; then, students revise their writing, specifically looking to use adverbs to help make their meaning clear. Finally, in Lesson 12, students edit their partner’s writing for punctuation and grammar errors using the editor’s checklist.
In Module 4, students practice with compound sentences, use conjunctions to form compound sentences, and edit a writing draft using compound sentences. The teacher uses the “Display and Engage: Skill 1.4.2a” projectable to review components of simple sentences: a subject, or naming part, and a predicate, or action part. Instruction on compound sentences continues: “[Compound sentences are] two shorter sentences joined by and, but, or or. A comma is used before the joining word.” The teacher explains that writers sometimes combine related sentences to make stories more interesting and to make their writing flow better. The teacher models combining two choppy sentences into a compound sentence.
Grammar practice is provided in isolation, such as in the Writing Workshop “Teacher’s Guide,” “Module 6: Subject Pronouns.” A connection to prior learning is made with the “Display and Engage Grammar 2.7.1a” projectable, with guidance for the teacher: “Remind children that a noun is a word that names a person, place, animal, or thing. Remind them that the naming part, or subject, of a sentence tells who or what does or did something. A noun can be replaced by a pronoun.” Students use a word bank of pronouns—he, she, it, they—and choose which one fits in a sentence with a blank, such as “Jane is happy. …has a new puppy.” Independent practice is provided on “Printable: Grammar 2.7.2.,” where students do a similar task: “Write the pronoun that can take the place of the underlined word or words.”
Weekly lessons in the Writer’s Workshop Teacher Guide consistently include processes for revising and editing. For example, in Module 9, learning objectives include students proofreading their report to ensure they do not have any errors. To do this, they use “Anchor Chart W14: Check your Writing!” and the “Clock Partners” routine. In “Writer's Notebook 9.13,” there is a “Proofreading Guide” with questions. Editors must put their names on the paper and answer questions, such as “Do the subject and verb agree in number? Yes/No.” At the bottom of the page, students pick one item in their writing that they want to improve and explain how they plan to improve it. Finally, students use a checklist to edit their drafts.
Materials include appropriate practice for students to write legibly in cursive. Procedures and supports for teachers to assess students’ handwriting development are provided.
Examples include but are not limited to:
The “Literacy Center” portion of the materials includes a “Word Work” section, where students choose an activity to practice writing words using their best handwriting. Teachers review the printables students turn in to assess students’ handwriting. Examples of choices students have for practicing are:
In Module 1, during Literacy Centers, students have an opportunity to practice handwriting in the Word Work center. In this particular lesson, the practice is on short a. The center has a printable with a list of “Handwriting Check” questions: “Do my letters sit on the line? Can others read what I wrote? Did I leave enough space between words and sentences? Which spelling word did I write best? Put a star next to it. Why is it the best?” In subsequent modules, this continues to be a learning pattern in Literacy Centers, and the same self-evaluation questions are included.
Module 5 includes the cursive practice of words with the long-o pattern. The teacher demonstrates cursive by starting at the middle line and curving down to the bottom line to form letters a, d, and o. With teacher guidance, students describe what they notice about the letters:
In Module 8, the teacher models how to form the cursive letters j, p, and q. Chants are used to help students remember the correct strokes to use when forming the letters. Students practice, using the “Write and Reveal” routine as well as the printables “Cursive Jj, Pp, and Qq.” During Literacy Centers, students use their cursive handwriting skills to complete the Word Work activities.
In Module 10, students continue practicing cursive using the process from previous lessons. Students notice the similarities and differences between the letters Mm and Nn before practicing using the Write and Reveal routine and printables “Cursive Mm and Nn.” During Literacy Centers, students use the “Spelling and Handwriting Printable” to choose their activity. A checklist is provided to remind students of the skills needed to correctly form cursive letters and includes:
Materials include a plan for teachers to assess students’ handwriting development by using “Spelling Assessments”; teachers dictate given words and sentences. Students must use their best handwriting in order to show they are able to correctly spell the word. Also, the writing rubrics used to assess the students’ completed writing pieces include descriptors whereby handwriting can be assessed using appropriate conventions of writing. Finally, the teacher materials explain that handwriting can be assessed by reviewing student writing samples, looking for appropriate letter formation, continuous strokes, and correct spacing.
Materials support students’ listening and speaking about texts by providing opportunities for students to listen actively and to ask questions to understand information. Consistent opportunities for students to engage in discussions that require students to share information and ideas about the topics they are discussing are present throughout the materials.
Examples include but are not limited to:
In Module 1, students discuss the text Clark the Shark. Students ask partners the question “Would you like to have Clark as a friend? Why or why not?” Students review “Anchor Chart 39: Collaborative Conversations” and learn to ask questions with more than one word when they do not understand their partners. Using the “Turn and Talk” routine, with a partner, students discuss the questions they had before, during, and after reading; each partner explains how these questions helped him or her understand the story. Students then pose questions to one another; guiding questions are provided by the teacher: “Why do Clark’s friends stop playing with him? How do you think this made him feel? Use text evidence to explain your answer. Explain how Clark’s rhyming rules help him be a good citizen.” These questions ultimately lead students to understand the central message of the story and develop an independent writing piece. For their independent writing, students answer the question “How do you know Clark wants to do the right thing? Use details from the words and pictures to explain your ideas.” Students later listen to the text Be a Super Citizen to build on what they know about citizenship. They use the question “How can being a good citizen make a difference to others?” as a guide, in order to ask relevant questions to clarify information. Students share information and ideas that focus on the topic being discussed, speaking clearly and at an appropriate pace and using the conventions of language. With the text Meet the Dogs of Bedlam Farm, students review the job of each animal, using the pictures in the text. Sentence stems used for discussions include: “[insert name]'s job is…. It is an important job because…. I think Lenora does/does not have a job because….”
In Module 2, students learn to create mental images. Students listen to the poem “Water Rolls, Water Rises” and Turn and Talk with partners to answer the question “How do the pictures help you understand what the poet is describing?” Students use details from the text as evidence to explain their reasoning. Students ask their partner questions to get more information about their partner’s thoughts; they are reminded to listen carefully to their partner’s response.
In Module 3, during the read-aloud of Mango, Abuela, and Me, students make a list of things they can do to help a classmate or someone else around them. Students compare their lists with a partner and share ways they can help others. Students use this to identify the point of view from which the story is told, and they look for any power words they learned.
In Module 5, students listen to the text What’s Good to Read? as they learn about texts written to persuade. Students ask their partner the question “What are the qualities of a good leader?” They go back to the text to search for evidence to support their answers. As their partner speaks, students listen carefully to their partner’s ideas. Students rotate speaking and listening, asking questions to clarify understanding.
In Module 9, students actively listen to the text The Long, Long Journey to ask questions before, during, and after reading. As students are reading the book, the teacher questions students regarding the structure of the text. Such questions include “In what order does the author describe these events?” Responses include “In the order in which they happen.” Students discuss the importance of understanding text structure—it helps to understand the main changes in the story. Students discuss text organization and chronological order using the Turn and Talk routine and the questions in “Teaching Pal” and “myBook”; they use details from images and audio to explain their responses. Teachers guide students to check their understanding by trying to restate what their partner says, using their own words.
In Module 10, the teacher provides stems for students, as they discuss, in small groups, the problem and solution of the story they read: “Chester’s problem is…. To solve this problem, Chester…. The new problem is….” Also, during the “Shared Reading” component of the “Reader’s Workshop,” with a partner, students discuss what they are good at, using sentences they wrote in response to the text read. Students also discuss similarities and differences in their responses.
Materials engage students in collaborative discussions by providing consistent opportunities for students to engage in discussion. Students have opportunities to practice grade-appropriate speaking skills using the standard conventions of the English language.
Examples include but are not limited to:
“Guiding Principles and Strategies” provide teachers with the routines “Turn and Talk” and “Think, Pair, Share,” which students use consistently throughout the modules. The guidelines for each routine reflect speaking skills:
In each module, students participate in discussions using the Turn and Talk; Think, Pair, Share; and “Share Chair” routines to discuss information and ideas with each other. Students use sentence stems that model the standard conventions of the English language as well as agreed-upon discussion rules.
In Module 1, as students share their research projects with the class using Share Chair, they are reminded to “speak loudly and clearly when speaking,” while students in the audience are reminded to “listen carefully and attentively to those sharing.” The rubric for the project includes a section on speaking and listening to assess students’ development of grade-appropriate speaking skills. Descriptors include “Information was shared effectively: Students spoke clearly and were able to project their voices effectively.” Students also learn to listen to others with care. Students learn to disagree in a respectful way, showing value for their partner’s thoughts and opinions. Students explain their reasons for disagreeing, while thinking of their partner’s feelings as they speak. Students learn to respond to their partner by using the sentence frame “I agree/don’t agree because….”
In Module 5, students read the text Going Places. Students consider how the author describes the experiences of a fictional character in the book. Students discuss their own experiences with classmates, thinking about a time they had a guest speaker or special activity at school. Students use “Anchor Chart 44: Recount an Experience” to learn the following strategies for telling their story well:
During collaborative discussions in Module 6, the teacher reminds students to listen actively and ask clarifying questions before they respond. Students use the Turn and Talk routine and sentence starters during the discussion with their partner:
In Module 7, students learn about collaborative conversations when they work on the “Inquiry and Research” project of writing an autobiography. When students are finished with their first draft, they share the draft in pairs and discuss how it can be improved. Students use peer feedback to improve their drafts.
Module 8 begins with students setting goals for their learning. They use sentence stems to share their goals: “I want to read stories about…. I want to learn about…. I will…so I can….” During “Literacy Centers,” students use “Reader’s Theater” to practice speaking loudly and clearly as they read the provided script. The “Tabletop Minilesson 22.1” flipbook provides additional sentence stems to talk about the text The Growth of a Sunflower during small-group discussions. These include, but are not limited to “I think…because….” Students must provide examples and justify their responses using text evidence.
Materials engage students in both short-term and sustained recursive inquiry processes for different purposes by providing students with opportunities to ask and generate general questions for inquiry and generate and follow a research plan.
Examples include but are not limited to:
Modules 1–9 include an “Inquiry and Research” project; each project is on a different topic, which is related to the “Essential Question” of the module; students follow a research plan. The steps for each project include:
Module 2 has students use The Important Book as a guide to identify and describe five objects of their choosing. Students begin by brainstorming and generating a list of research questions they have about matter and its characteristics. Students use these questions to determine whether the objects for which they chose to write their descriptions are solids, liquids, or gases.
In Module 5, students identify the qualities of a good leader as they relate to the Essential Question of the module. Students use the Think, Pair, Share routine to discuss these qualities and share them with the group. Students use the books What’s Good to Read? and Book Reviews For Kids By Kids! to help with ideas, if needed.
Module 7 uses “Anchor Chart 45: Research Questions” to teach students that, in order to conduct effective research, it is important to write research questions. The anchor chart and teacher explain one way to write research questions—using senses; for example, “How did Helen Keller feel when she could not see?” Materials suggest the teacher explains that, while it is fine to start with a long list of questions, students will want to remove any questions that can be answered with a yes-or-no response. Students then practice using the texts Miss Moore Thought Otherwise and I Am Helen Keller to determine a topic they want to research. Students use the Think, Pair, Share routine to write research questions around the topic chosen. The teacher provides feedback to eliminate any questions that do not stay on topic or that can be answered with a yes-or-no response.
In Module 8, students engage in a three-week Inquiry and Research project. They collaborate to generate ideas for the project, research, complete, and present a “Plants and Places” book. In Week 1, students research sources and gather information. Students set a goal, gather information to build background, clarify project goals, generate research questions, develop a research plan, and create a “Curiosity Board.” To build background, teachers remind students about what they have learned (plants need several things to grow, including soil, sunlight, and water, but not all plants are the same). To clarify the goals of the project, teachers are instructed: “Tell children that they will be assigned a different type of environment, such as a desert or a rainforest. … They will work in groups to learn about what types of plants grow in these environments and what they need to grow. Then they will write and present a book about how to care for one type of plant that grows in their assigned environment.” To facilitate students’ generating research questions, teachers assign groups of two or three students to different environments; the groups choose one type of plant that grows in that environment to research. Students use the Think, Pair, Share routine to brainstorm research questions they hope their research will help answer. Teachers guide students through developing a research plan, prompting them to look at informational books and approved websites for information as well as magazines, newspapers, catalogs, and printable content for pictures. Teachers also make a note of students’ questions to revisit after they have completed their projects. Finally, students create Curiosity Boards on which groups can post images, facts, or other information about the plants and environments they are researching. Teachers discuss the display, explaining how to use it: Students should think about the environments where these plants live and what their environments tell humans about what plants need to grow.
In Week 2 of Module 8, students record information in simple visual formats, answering questions about their plants, such as “What are the plant’s characteristics? What is the soil/sand like where this plant grows? How much rain or sunlight does it receive? How does this plant thrive in its environment?” Students add answers to their own research questions and create an informational how-to book about caring for the plant they have chosen. Teachers remind students to read through all of their research notes to decide as a group which information and illustrations are the best to include in the book.
In Week 3, student groups share their research in a “Share Chair” presentation. Teachers remind presenters of speaking expectations and the audience of listening expectations. Teachers revisit the list of research questions students generated in Week 1 and discuss which questions they were able to answer.
Materials contain interconnected tasks that build student knowledge. Questions and tasks are designed so that students build and apply knowledge and skills in reading, writing, speaking, listening, thinking, and language. Tasks integrate reading, writing, speaking, listening, and thinking; include components of vocabulary, comprehension, and syntax; and provide opportunities for increased independence.
Examples include but are not limited to:
In Module 2, students use the “Notice and Note Signpost” “Aha Moment” to determine how a character finally understanding something might change things within the story of a fiction text. In nonfiction texts, students focus on the “Contrasts and Contradictions” the author presents in the text to ask themselves “What does this make me wonder about?” During the shared reading, students are questioned, “Does this text give facts or tell a story? How do you know? What do you notice about the headings at the top of each column?” Students use the “Think, Pair, Share” routine to discuss and share “How does exploring help us understand the world around you?” Students apply their knowledge from the shared reading to their independent reading time by completing the “Author’s Purpose Reading Graphic Organizer.” During the “Academic Vocabulary” lesson, students learn the definition of a word, with supporting examples. Teachers provide the following prompts: “What things in the classroom are hollow? Can petals be tender? Explain why or why not.” Using these prompts, students discuss with a partner and share their answers with the class. After reading The Important Book, the teacher provides sentence stems for students to finish writing based on their understanding of the meaning of the words being studied:
After completing the sentence stems, partners use the Think, Pair, Share routine to discuss their completed sentences. Then, they share their favorite examples with the class. Students also work to complete a “Reader’s Response” about The Important Book by adding to the book and following the same pattern the author uses.
In Module 5, students listen to the text Seed by Seed. Students discuss the figurative language used in the text by answering questions: “What simile does the author use on this page? What two things does the simile compare?” After reading, students discuss good deeds they could do that would help others, like those of John Chapman, and then write about them. Students carry their learning over to independent reading, as they find figurative language in just-right books.
In Module 7, during the shared-reading lesson, students synthesize information using an “Anchor Chart” to “[identify] important details and [ask] themselves ‘What does it all mean to me?’” After reading texts such as Miss Moore Thought Otherwise and I Am Helen Keller, students write an autobiography by generating ideas of events in their own lives to write about. Students make a list of important events in their lives and use the Think, Pair, Share routine to discuss the events. Once the final written task is completed, students use the “Share Chair” routine to share their autobiography with the class. After listening to peers, the class is provided time to pose questions to the presenter.
In Module 10, students listen to the text Trombone Shorty read aloud. After reading, students analyze the author’s use of figurative language by responding orally to questions: “What text on this page is an example of literal language? Which sentence includes figurative language? What word shows that this is a simile?” Students then write to explain why the author sometimes fell asleep with his trombone and what that shows about the author. After finishing, students look for figurative language during their independent reading. Students read independently and consider the following questions as they read:
The materials provide distributed practice over the course of the year. The design includes scaffolds for students to demonstrate the integration of literacy skills that spiral over the school year.
Examples include but are not limited to:
Students use the “Notice and Note Signposts” to comprehend and infer information read throughout the year. Module 1 begins with the signposts “Words of the Wiser” and “3 Big Questions.” The teacher uses “Anchor Chart: Words of the Wiser” and “Anchor Chart: 3 Big Questions” to present the signposts. As students listen to the read-aloud Clark the Shark, the teacher pauses to think aloud, “What’s the life lesson and how might it affect Clark?” After the story is read, students answer the questions “Why did Clark’s friends stop playing with him? How do you think that makes him feel?” Students practice the Notice and Note signposts in their independent reading as well. Later in the year, students answer the questions “Why might the author bring this up again and again?” and “What does this make me wonder about?” Using the text May Day Around the World, the teacher models thinking when a signpost is recognized: “I wonder why Maria and Carlos hide. Don’t they want to see what Ms. Garcia thinks of the May Day basket? After I read the rest of the text, I understand what happened. Maria and Carlos wanted to surprise Ms. Garcia. This must be what people in Austin do on May Day. They leave presents on people’s doorsteps and surprise them.” At the end of the story, students write about which celebration from the story they would like to attend and why. Students continue their practice of identifying and using the signposts as they participate in shared-reading lessons and read independently.
In Module 1, students review previously taught genres from first grade, such as personal narrative, informational text, fantasy, biography, realistic fiction, and video. As students learn about biography, they study the mentor text The William Hoy Story. Students learn: “[The] central idea of a biography is the most important idea or point the author wants readers to take away after reading about a person’s life...good readers figure out the central idea of a text by paying attention to supporting evidence. Authors include small pieces of information, or details, to tell more about the central idea.” Students use metacognitive skills as they demonstrate comprehension through asking and answering questions, monitoring and clarifying, summarizing, creating mental images, and learning about the following literary elements: central idea, setting, author’s purpose, and characters.
Module 2 introduces narrative nonfiction, poetry, drama, and fine art, while reviewing informational text and fantasy. Students learn about making inferences, making connections, and creating mental images; they review asking and answering questions. Students also learn about author’s purpose, the central idea, content-area words, setting, how to connect text and visuals, and the elements of poetry and drama.
In Module 4, students discuss characteristics of the following genres: recipe, fairy tale, informational text, fable, drama, fantasy, and video. As recipes and cause-and-effect text structures are introduced, students review previously taught comprehension skills and strategies.
In Module 6, students discuss the genre characteristics of fantasy, narrative nonfiction, informational text, poetry, and video. As narrative nonfiction is introduced, students review previously taught comprehension skills and strategies.
In Module 8, students review the genre characteristics of a photo essay, informational text, legend, fairy tale, realistic fiction, and video, while reviewing previously taught comprehension skills and strategies.
In Module 10, students review the genre characteristics of realistic fiction, narrative nonfiction, informational text, poetry, and video. As students learn about informational text, students “review that when an author’s purpose for writing is to inform, the author gives facts about a topic.” Students recall, “Authors of informational texts try to make the facts easy for readers to find and understand.” Students use “Anchor Chart 36: Text Features” as they learn that “sometimes an author decides to use speech bubbles instead of quotation marks to show what a character is saying…the bottom of the speech bubble identifies the character who is saying the dialogue.” The students also learn that “when authors include words that might be new or unknown to the reader, they may include a pronunciation that gives information about how to say the word.” Students complete the module by reviewing previously taught comprehension skills and strategies, as autobiography as a genre and graphic features as a tool of author’s craft are introduced. Modules 11 and 12 review genres and previously taught comprehension skills and strategies.
Not Scored in Grade 2
Not Scored in Grade 2
The materials provide explicit systematic instruction in phonetic knowledge and opportunities for students to practice both in and out of context. The materials include a research-based sequence of grade-level foundational skills instruction and opportunities for sufficient student practice to achieve grade-level mastery. The materials systematically develop knowledge of grade-level phonics patterns as addressed in the Grade 2 TEKS and provide opportunities for students to apply that knowledge to connected texts and tasks. Instruction is provided in grade-level high-frequency words with opportunities for students to read words both in and out of context. The materials include building spelling knowledge as identified in the Grade 2 TEKS.
Examples include but are not limited to:
The materials contain “Start Right Readers.” Two texts are used per week and are matched to the foundational skills taught during that week. “Know It, Show It” printables are available for students to practice the formation of letters, phonics skills, and high-frequency words learned during the foundational skills portions of the modules. “Display and Engage” charts are used for example and practice words that feature the phonics skills taught. There is a “Rigby Leveled Library,” which provides further text resources for students to practice foundational skills. The “iRead” technology provided is an individualized program in which students are matched to phonics skills and practice based on information gathered from the diagnostic included in the program.
Phonics skills practice is present in every module and focuses on reinforcing students’ ability to hear and manipulate individual speech sounds as they continue to develop their reading skills. Skills progress from simpler to more difficult as the year goes on and follow the sequence outlined in the TEKS: decoding words with short, long, or variant vowels, trigraphs, and blends, silent letters, multisyllabic words of all syllable types, digraphs and diphthongs, compound words, contractions, and common abbreviations and using knowledge of syllable division patterns.
Module 1 begins with a review of short vowel sounds for /a/ and /i/. The teacher uses the letter cards and articulation videos to demonstrate the sound made and provides additional words to practice blending using these short vowel sounds. Later in the module, students learn of the long /a/ and /i/ sounds. The teacher models using one-syllable words. To explain the type of syllable and how to use it to decode longer words, the teacher uses the word game and says, “The word game has a VCe pattern. It has a vowel consonant e spelling. The final e is silent, but lets us know the first vowel stands for a long vowel sound.” Students are given words to practice blending with a partner. Words include but are not limited to man, dip, and cab. As independent practice, students read a list of words such as sad, kit, is, and tap. This skill is also practiced in small groups using the decodable reader In a Jam.
In Module 3, students practice and apply blending word sounds in CVCC words using a “Continuous Blending” routine (teacher displays letter cards, sweeps her hand under the letters, and guides students to blend). The teacher writes the words for students to see and points to two words in random order to have a student read aloud until each student has taken a turn. Next, the teacher covers the first letter in a series of words (land, dust, wing, bent, soft, text, jump) and asks students to name the word family (for example, cover l in land and name the word family -and). The teacher replaces the covered letter with other consonants (for example, b, br, bl, gr, s, st) and asks students to tell how word families help them read rhyming words quickly. The teacher uses the text Sad King Ben during small-group time to review or reinforce blending and decoding words with final consonant blends -st, -nd, -nt, -ft, -xt, and -mp.
In Module 6, students learn about the -y and -ly suffixes. The teacher explains these suffixes make the long /e/ sound and change the meaning of the base word. Using hill as an example, the teacher adds -y to the word to make a new word, hilly. The meaning then becomes full of hills or with hills. The same routine is used to explain the sound and meaning of -ly. Using kind as an example, the teacher adds -ly to create the word kindly. The meaning then becomes in a kind way. In partners, students practice decoding words that end in -y and -ly such as neatly. Students then practice independently by reading a list of words including but not limited to safely, slowly, deeply, nicely, and wisely. This skill is reinforced in small groups using the decodable text What a Mess!
In Module 10, students use the same Continuous Blending routine to read longer multisyllabic words with the prefix mis- (misuse, mishear, mislaid, misjudge, misstep, misprint, misread, mislead). After one student reads one of the words aloud, another student identifies the prefix and the base word. Students then work together to tell what the word means. The teacher uses the text A Shell for Fizz during small-group time to review or reinforce blending and decoding words with the prefix mis-.
Students read, write, and spell high-frequency words following the same “Words to Know” routine used in Kindergarten: see the word, say the word, spell the word, and write and check the word. Students also practice sight words from the modules with games and activities. For example, in Module 1, students play the game of “Word Head”: students write high-frequency words on sticky notes, put the sticky notes on each other’s foreheads, and give each other hints to help students guess the word.
In Module 8, students practice high-frequency words by playing “Word Detective.” Students cut apart word cards containing high-frequency words and place the cards face down. The first player turns over a word card and uses the word in two sentences; instead of saying the word, the student replaces the word with “blank.” Students write down their guesses and partners then alternate roles. Students also read the Start Right Reader What Sue Found. After reflecting on and discussing the story, students connect the story to high-frequency words. The teacher lists high-frequency words on the board and students number their papers 1–10. Students listen to a sentence using the high-frequency word, but instead of saying the word, the teacher replaces the word with “blank.” Students write their answers down on their paper as they play the game.
The materials include building spelling knowledge as identified in the TEKS. In Module 3, students begin spelling practice by taking a pretest on words with final blends. After the pretest, the spelling lesson begins as the teacher models the sound for the week within the words, with blends at the end of words. Students watch as the teacher models correct formation of the letters. Finally, students sort the words into six columns (words with different blends). In Module 7, students begin spelling practice by taking a pretest over words with r-controlled vowels, or and ore. After the pretest, the spelling lesson begins as the teacher models the sound for the week within the words, with r-controlled vowels with or and ore. Students watch as the teacher models correct formation of the letters. Finally, students sort the words into two columns (words with or and ore).
The materials provide frequent opportunities for students to practice and develop fluency while reading a wide variety of grade-level texts at the appropriate rate with accuracy and prosody. Materials include explicit instruction in fluency, including rate, accuracy, and prosody, as well as opportunities and routines for teachers to regularly monitor and provide corrective feedback.
Examples include but are not limited to:
In Module 1, students receive explicit instruction in accuracy and self-correction. The teacher reads a sentence out loud, including reading a word incorrectly, and asks students to identify whether or not what was read made sense. Students identify the error, and the teacher rereads the sentence correctly. Using the text In a Jam, students practice reading lines from the book with a partner as the teacher listens and provides feedback. The teacher directs students to ask themselves, “Did that make sense? Does that sound right?” while they are reading and to go back and reread the text correctly if they make an error.
In Module 1, students read The Kindness Club for “Readers’ Theatre.” As students practice reading aloud, they focus on rate, accuracy, and prosody. The materials coach students to read with accuracy and self-correct when necessary: “If a word is hard to say, add a note next to it showing how to pronounce it. Use context to help you figure out words you don’t know.” The materials also provide a rubric for students to evaluate their fluency during Readers’ Theatre that includes the following criteria: “I spoke loudly and clearly; My reading rate was just right. I did not read too quickly or too slowly; I read with feeling to show more about my character.” Students choose between a happy face, straight face, and sad face to rate their fluency.
In Module 2, the teacher coaches students on phrasing as they read the “Start Right Reader” The Lone Cat. The teacher explains, “When good readers read aloud, they group words in ways that make sense. Good readers use the punctuation for clues about which words go together.” The teacher models reading aloud a portion of the text with appropriate phrasing. The teacher leads a discussion about how the use of phrasing made it easier to understand as the text was read aloud. Students then practice using phrasing with choral reading and partner reading. As students partner read, the teacher circulates and provides feedback to students on their fluency.
In Module 4, students learn that reading rate helps the reader and audience understand what is happening because the words are read smoothly. The teacher models this by reading a line from the text Queen once slowly and then in a very choppy manner. The teacher then rereads the line smoothly and leads students in a discussion about which line was easier to understand and why. Students practice reading aloud at the appropriate rate using the echo reading routine. Finally, students independently re-read aloud Queen or If The Shoes Fits multiple times to increase their reading rate.
In Module 7, the teacher models fluency using appropriate intonation while reading Work Day. The teacher explains, “[W]hen good readers read aloud, their reading sounds as if they are telling a story or talking to a friend. A good reader’s voice rises and falls to add interest and emphasis. A reader’s voice drops a little at the end of a statement and rises at the end of a question.” The teacher reads a sentence two times, modeling reading in a monotone voice and reading with expression. The students discuss how the change in voice changed the meaning of the sentence. Students echo read a portion of the text after the teacher to practice reading with intonation. Next, students partner-read selected pages of Work Day or I Am Helen Keller from their “myBook” as the teacher coaches students on their intonation.
The materials include the “Rigby Leveled Library,” which includes leveled texts and running records for teachers to use with small groups of students. The running records include a fluency scoring guide that provides information to give students feedback on their accuracy, prosody, and rate.
The materials include placement assessments and provide information to assist in foundational skills instruction. Support and direction for teachers to assess students’ growth in and mastery of foundational skills is included. Assessments yield meaningful information for teachers to use when planning small-group instruction and differentiation.
Examples include but are not limited to:
The materials host a variety of assessments for teachers to use for screening, diagnostic, and progress-monitoring purposes. The materials include a “Benchmark Assessment Guide” for use at each guided reading level to assess students’ progress. The Benchmark Assessment Guide determines each student’s independent and instructional reading level by having the student read a specific book on each level. Teachers use this information to sort students into small groups for guided reading instruction. The “Progress-Monitoring Assessments” can be administered on a bi-weekly basis to assess the beginning reading skills of students. Each module also includes a module inventory, which is a one-on-one assessment of foundational skills. As the students move throughout the modules, the inventories become increasingly more difficult.
The materials include “Intervention Assessments,” which provide screening, diagnostic, and progress-monitoring assessments to help identify students who are at-risk for reading difficulties and provide recommendations on the amount of support students are likely to need during reading instruction. As described in the Intervention Assessments “Introduction,” the teacher can administer “Letter Correspondence” and “Phoneme Segmentation” as a screener. In addition, the Intervention Assessments are designed to inform instruction. The materials include suggested steps to ensure the teacher provides data-driven intervention. First, if a student shows a weak area(s) on the “Screening Assessment” at the beginning of the year, teachers are to administer a more specific diagnostic test to determine the skills that are missing. Next, teachers are to provide intensive instruction using the “Foundational Skills and Word Study Studio.” Teachers are also instructed to provide scaffolded support in the form of interventions during core instruction for two weeks. During this time, teachers monitor progress using Progress-Monitoring Assessments and core assessments twice a week. “Use the Progress-Monitoring Assessments to monitor the progress of students who are receiving intervention instruction and to help determine when they are ready to exit the intervention program.” For students having difficulty, materials suggest that teachers may need to re-administer the Screening Assessment and consult with teammates or specialists within the district.
The materials suggest using the Screening Assessments to screen all students for reading difficulties at the beginning of the year. At the beginning of the school year, teachers use the Screening Assessments to screen all students for reading difficulties. In Grade 2, Screening Assessments include “Word Identification” and “Oral Reading Fluency.” Teachers then use the “Diagnostic Assessments” to follow up with students who demonstrated reading difficulties on the Screening Assessments and to inform targeted instruction.
“Weekly Assessments,” which are optional, measure students’ understanding of reading, writing, and foundational skills taught. Weekly Assessments include “cold” passages—passages students have not read before that can be used to assess oral reading. The assessments include 10 to 15 items, including both multiple-choice and constructed-response items. Weekly Assessments yield meaningful information for teachers to use when planning small-group instruction and differentiation.
The materials regularly and systematically offer assessment opportunities that genuinely measure students’ progress as indicated by the program scope and sequence. Teachers are supported with guidance and direction on responding to individual students’ literacy needs, based on assessments appropriate to the grade level. Assessment opportunities are included to assess student understanding of phonetic knowledge and reading fluency.
Examples include but are not limited to:
A variety of assessments are available for teachers to use for screening, diagnostic, and progress-monitoring purposes. Teachers use the “Intervention Assessments” to provide screening, diagnostic, and progress-monitoring assessments to identify students who are at risk for reading difficulties. The assessments provide recommendations on the amount of support students are likely to need during reading instruction. All students are screened at the beginning of the school year. “Screening Assessments” include “Word Identification” and “Oral Reading Fluency.” “Progress-Monitoring Assessments” are used to monitor the progress of students who are receiving intervention instruction. These assessments help determine when students are ready to exit the intervention program. The “Intervention Assessments Guide” within the program spans across all grade levels, so that teachers can access below-level materials, if needed, to determine students’ instructional needs; the guide also gives teachers directions on how each type of assessment is used. In “Administering and Scoring Assessments,” teachers are given specific instructions on how to score student performance and instructional recommendations. For example, for the “Word Identification” assessment, students should correctly identify 8 out of 10 words at the beginning of the year. These words are among the most frequently used words in the English language. The “Words Correct Per Minute” assessment calls for 40–60 words per minute read correctly.
The materials contain a “Word-Identification Screening Assessment” for use at the beginning of the year. Half of the words on this assessment are multisyllabic, decodable words, and the rest are high-frequency words. The materials recommend: “In the lower grades, administer the Screening Assessments: Word Identification tests to students who struggle on the Oral Reading Fluency assessment to determine whether they would benefit from additional high-frequency word instruction, letter-sound instruction, or testing.” The Grade 2 assessment does not include nonsense word reading.
The Screening Assessment contains Oral Reading Fluency passages for assessing students at the beginning of the school year. The student reads the grade-level passage aloud while the teacher records miscues. At the end of one minute, the teacher marks the word the student completed reading. The teacher calculates the number of words per minute the student reads accurately. Progress-Monitoring Assessments are used to assess students every two weeks. The materials indicate the following guidelines for use when determining if a student’s fluency is on grade level: beginning of the year, 40–60 WCPM; middle of the year, 74–94 WCPM; end of the year, 90–110 WCPM.
The materials also include “Benchmark Assessments” for each reading level. The teacher provides a preview of the text and students read aloud as the teacher records errors. Errors include, but are not limited to: the child reads a word incorrectly and doesn’t self-correct; the child omits a word; the child inserts a word that is not there; the child must be told a word in order to continue reading. If the child self-corrects, it does not count as an error. After the student completes reading the selection, the teacher calculates the number of words the student reads per minute. Students read the text independently if they read 143–151 words accurately or above 95% accuracy. Students read the text instructionally if they read 136–142 words accurately (90–94% accuracy). Students read the text frustrationally if they read 135 words or less accurately (below 90% accuracy).
Materials include supports for students who demonstrate proficiency above grade level by providing planning and learning opportunities, including extensions and differentiation, for students who demonstrate literacy skills above that expected at the grade level.
Examples include but are not limited to:
At the end of each lesson, the materials include an “Option for Differentiation” section, allowing teachers to differentiate the small-group reading lesson based on reading levels, using targeted skill practice and targeted language development.
In Module 1, in small groups, students review how good readers create mental images. Using the “Tabletop Minilesson: Reading 3,” students look for details in the text that describe people, places, and things and picture what they would look like. Using the “Printable Reading Organizer 3” and the text Picture Day Perfection, students fill in details from the book and discuss how they used mental images to describe the characters and setting. Students then apply this skill to their independent reading books; those who are ready focus only on one character and describe how their mental images change throughout the story.
In Module 3, in small groups, students focus on understanding the author’s message. As students are reading their independent books, they use “Reading Graphic Organizer 20” to answer “What is the story mostly about? What lesson does the character learn or teach? What lesson have you learned after reading the story?” For students needing an extension opportunity, students create a poster including the story’s title and an illustration or collage showcasing the story’s theme.
In Module 5, students use the text Whoosh!: Lonnie Johnson’s Super-Soaking Stream of Inventions to learn about how authors organize text using different structures to support their purpose for writing. Students use the “Tabletop Minilesson: Reading 25, Author’s Purpose” and printable “Reading Graphic Organizer 21” to document how the text is organized (chronological order). Students are questioned, “What is the topic? What happened first, next, last? How are the events connected? What is the author’s purpose for writing?” Students are reminded to only include the most important events from the text and then discuss with a partner how the chronological order helps them figure out the author’s purpose for writing. Students then use another copy of the printable to practice and continue working on this skill in their independent reading books.
In Module 9, students meet to work through the book The Great Kapok Tree: A Tale of the Amazon Rainforest, which is a level-O book with a Lexile measure of 590L. This level is appropriate for students who are reading at an end-of-the-year second-grade level and beyond. Book clubs take place throughout the modules for proficient readers to discuss independently-read books on their level. Students meet five times as they read through the book and discuss it. In the first meeting, students receive their book and discuss the following discussion starters: “What made you want to read this book? What do you think the story will be about? Do you recognize any of the animals in the pictures? What do you know about them?” The second and third meetings provide comprehension questions for pages students have read. In the fourth meeting, students make connections to the text, discuss things they might do to help the world, and plan their group project. Students have the following options for their group project: make a mural, write a news story, or make a movie. Each of the projects includes a printable to guide them through the steps in the process of creating their product. In the final meeting, students present their product, create a self-evaluation, and confer with the teacher.
The Tabletop Minilessons teacher resource provides additional guidance on adjusting instruction as needed. In the “Reading Strategies” lesson, above-grade-level strategies are provided so that teachers can instruct students with the goal of using these strategies independently, in above-grade-level text. “As teachers introduce and implement these strategies in the classroom, children will be able to use them as they read independently. Children may use strategies individually, in groups, or in a whole-class setting. These strategies are designed for use with any text, from fiction to nonfiction, and many of them can be used or adapted to work with digital media as well.” The “Add a Page” strategy has students think about a text they’ve read and how they would add to or change the story. Students are guided to create a new ending. Students share their new ending with a partner or group. The “Choose and Defend” strategy has students work in pairs or groups to share and explain their favorite character, sentence, most interesting fact or idea, or the best word or picture. Students are encouraged to use details and evidence from the text to support their thinking.
Materials include supports for students who perform below grade level to ensure they are meeting the grade-level literacy standards by providing planning and learning opportunities (including extensions and differentiation) for students who demonstrate literacy skills below that expected at the grade level.
Examples include but are not limited to:
At the end of each lesson, the materials include an “Option for Differentiation” section in which teachers are able to differentiate the small-group reading lesson based on reading levels using targeted skill practice and targeted language development. This section includes levels of instruction to be provided as the teacher sees as appropriate for the student; levels in which scaffolded questions and tasks are provided are classified as “Almost There” and “Ready for More.” The materials also include the “iRead” program in which students are matched to lacking skills based on the diagnostic assessment information within the program. As students use the program, they are able to fill previous gaps and move toward grade-level proficiency.
In Module 3, as students focus on identifying the theme of a story, they use “Reading Graphic Organizer 20” to answer the questions “What is the story mostly about? What lesson has the character learned or taught? What have you learned after reading this story?” Students are provided the scaffold of using post-it notes to tag places in the story with clues about the lesson the character learns. The teacher questions students about the clues and provides the sentence stem “The lesson learned in the story is….”
In Module 5, in “Make Minutes Count,” phonological awareness support is provided for students who may need it: “As you meet with small groups to read On the Move, use one or more of these related activities, as needed, at the beginning or the end of the small-group session. Connect to Phonics. Play Rhyme Stand. Write these words on the board: flow,
hope, moat, oak, toad. Think of a word that rhymes with one of the words and say:
‘I see a word that rhymes with…. Fill in the blanks. Stand when you find it.’ Once all children are standing, prompt them to read the word aloud. Repeat the procedure for the remaining words.”
In Module 9, “Make Minutes Count,” students who need support continue to work on prior grade-level blending and phonics skills: “As you meet with small groups to read The Red Car, use one or more of these related activities, as needed, at the beginning or the end of the small-group session. Connect to Phonics. Use Letter Cards to build game. Have children blend and read the word. Then use Letter Cards to add the prefix pre- to build pregame. Have children blend and read the new word, clapping once for each syllable. Ask: ‘How does the prefix pre- change the meaning of a word? (It makes the word mean before.) What does pregame mean? (before the game)’ Repeat the process with the words mix and test.”
The materials also include a leveled library in guided reading groups. The students are matched to texts based on their reading level, and each leveled text has an accompanying “Take and Teach” lesson. The teacher is able to provide instruction at the students’ level. In the leveled reader Saving Scruffy, the lesson focuses on the characters and story structure. Students are questioned, “What is happening in the beginning of the story?” Picture scaffolds are used to help students identify the answer. The teacher also draws a story structure chart to facilitate understanding of the story and structure.
The “Tabletop Minilessons” teacher resource provides additional guidance on adjusting instruction as needed. In the “Point of View” lesson, a graphic arrow differentiates between supports for students who are “Almost There” and those “Ready for More.” To provide scaffolds for students, the materials direct teachers, “As appropriate, tailor instruction to need by prompting children to identify the narrator of the story, locate the pronouns used to narrate the story, decide whether the story is told from a first-person or a third-person point of view, independently identify evidence from the text that reveals the point of view from which the story is told, and rewrite a sentence in the story from a different point of view.” The materials move students through this continuum of activities toward being “Ready for More” with any particular skill.
The materials include supports for English Learners (ELs) to meet grade-level learning expectations through lesson features provided for all students, as well as scaffolds labeled specifically for ELs. Accommodations are commensurate with various levels of English language proficiency as defined by the ELPS (“Beginning,” “Intermediate,” “Advanced,” and “Advanced High”), and vocabulary is developed in the context of connected discourse. Scaffolds such as pictures, realia, gestures, and cognates are included. Strategic use of students’ first language as a means to improve students’ development in English is also present.
Examples include but are not limited to:
The “Tabletop Minilessons: English Language Development” resource is suggested for daily use with ELs in small groups to connect to the module topic and/or a specific text. At the beginning of this resource, vocabulary strategies, including using cognates, are recommended to help children bridge their two languages. Setting up a cognate wall, comparing cognates, sorting cognates, and identifying false cognates are specific activities mentioned. The main lessons in these resources are designed to introduce, practice, and reinforce key academic language functions. Each lesson includes a vivid student-facing image to support background knowledge, word and phrase banks to expose students to important academic language, graphic organizers, and accommodations for four levels of English language proficiency. Cognates are identified through color-coding within the lessons when they appear.
Other resources to build language while supporting grade-level learning expectations include “Vocabulary Cards”, “Anchor Charts”, and “Picture Cards”, which are part of the “Teacher’s Guide” lesson design for all students, but are especially helpful for ELs. Vocabulary Cards are used weekly to introduce vocabulary from the literature. The front of each card displays the word and a photo that depicts the word. The back of the card includes various instructional strategies such as “Use a Prop”, “Act It Out”, and “Use the Image” to further support word meaning. Visual Anchor Charts for Reading and Writing instruction are used daily and support understanding of genre features, comprehension skills and strategies, and writing forms. Picture Cards are used daily with “Phonological Awareness” lessons, which include a variety of English Learner Support scaffolds to support word meaning.
In Module 1, students learn about collaborative conversations. Students at the Beginning level practice speaking and listening in their native language. Students at the Intermediate level use the following sentence frames: “That’s interesting. I also think…. I agree with…. I also think that…. I’m not sure I agree. What details in the story…?” Students at the Advanced and Advanced High levels list questions to help others build on what others say.
In Module 4, students listen to Recipe for a Fairy Tale and answer text-dependent questions. Students at the Beginning level point to each step in the recipe as the teacher reads it aloud. Students at the Intermediate level tell what happened in the beginning, middle, and end of the story using the following sentence frames: “First,... Next,... Last,....” Students at the Advanced level answer the following questions: “What happened first? What happened next?
What happened last?” Students at the Advanced High level use the words first, next, and last to describe the events that happened after the dragon invited his friends over for lunch.
In Module 5, Lesson 7, students use vocabulary cards with visuals to learn the focus “Power Words” (rare, relay, honored, success, politics, advice, earned, equal). Students say the Power Words, explain the meanings, and talk about examples. Students at the Beginning level say each Power Word and tap out the syllables. Students at the Intermediate level say Power Words with one syllable (rare, earned), then two syllables (relay, honored, success, advice, equal), then three syllables (politics). Students at the Advanced and Advanced High levels say a Power Word, give the number of syllables, and tell which syllables are emphasized.
In Module 6, students use picture cards as they learn new words. Students at the Beginning level repeat object names after the teacher says them and points to the pictures (chalk, fork, rain, wood). Students at the Intermediate level use the picture cards to fill in the following sentence frames: “I use a…to eat. Chopping…is hard work.” Students at the Advanced and Advanced High levels secretly choose a picture card and create clues about the picture for other students to guess.
In Module 8, students listen to Jack and the Beanstalk and answer text-dependent questions. Students at the Beginning level answer yes/no questions about Jack and the giant. Students at the Intermediate level compare and contrast Jack and the giant using the following sentence frames: “Jack and the giant are similar because…. Jack and the giant are different because….” Students at the Advanced level compare and contrast Jack and the giant, using their own words. Students at the Advanced High level compare and contrast Jack’s life at the beginning of the story to his life at the end of the story.
In Module 10, students are encouraged to use their home language as they listen to the read-aloud Hello, World! Students at the Beginning level practice speaking and acting out how to say hello and goodbye in English; then, they share with the class how to say hello and goodbye in their native language. Students at the Intermediate level use the following sentence frames: “The first word I say when I see someone is…. The last word I say is….” Students at the Advanced level create their own sentences using the first and last words you say when greeting someone. Students at the Advanced High level create complete sentences to tell a partner what they say when they first meet someone and when they say goodbye; the partner translates the sentences into the partner’s native language.
In the “Writing Workshop Teacher’s Guide”, grammar lessons include regular suggestions to use English learners’ primary language as a resource to support understanding of the lesson topic. For example, in a lesson titled “Months”, the English learner support note suggests creating a classroom environment “where children’s first languages can help them learn English. Explain to native English speakers it is important for English learners to use their primary language during class sometimes.” In another lesson, “Action Verbs and Subjects”, the English learner support note suggests having first-language partners discuss what they know about verbs in their primary language, point out words in their first language that have the same function, and ask each other questions about verbs to clarify.
In the “Guiding Principles and Strategies” resource, the “Assessment and Differentiation” section provides several teacher resources to assist in supporting ELs. A “Stages of Second Language Acquisition” chart gives details about the five stages that learners go through as they learn English (pre-production, early production, speech emergence, intermediate fluency, advanced fluency) to assist teachers in identifying where their students fall within these developmental stages so that instruction can be adjusted. Information is provided about research-supported strategies to build language, including building background knowledge, using visuals, explicitly teaching vocabulary, reading repeatedly, and using sentence frames. Best practices for ELs are also detailed, including, but not limited to, demonstrating respect for children’s first languages, acting out procedures and vocabulary, taking advantages of teachable moments to point out differences in words (such as homophones or multiple-meaning words) when they arise, and teaching children that their efforts to communicate are most important and that making mistakes is acceptable.
The Guiding Principles and Strategies resource also provides support in building cross-linguistic connections. Different ways of comparing and contrasting two languages are presented, including exploring similarities (such as the shared letter-sound correspondence of /d/ in both Spanish and English), contrasting differences (such as false cognates like exit/éxito), and non-correlated elements (such as the absence of articles like the in Vietnamese). It also includes the “Language Differences” resource, which gives specific examples to show how different languages compare to English in their alphabets, phonological features, and grammar. Articulation videos are also provided to support ELs in making English sounds correctly. Specific examples of the strategies outlined in Guiding Principles and Strategies are shown in specific lessons.
The materials include assessment and guidance for teachers and administrators to monitor progress, including how to interpret and act on data yielded. Formative and summative assessments are aligned in purpose, intended use, and TEKS emphasis. Assessments and scoring information provide sufficient guidance for interpreting and responding to student performance. Assessments are connected to the regular content to support student learning.
Examples include but are not limited to:
Assessments are directly connected to learning throughout the modules. The materials provide “Benchmark” assessment books to determine the students’ reading levels and growth over time. The materials also provide online “Guided Reading Assessments” to assess students’ comprehension at a particular reading level and to help monitor progress. Each module includes a “Module Inventory” with a “Module Inventory Standards Correlation” chart, which displays how the TEKS are addressed in the materials. The Module Inventories provide one-on-one assessments of foundational skills. Students are assessed in a one-on-one environment, and scores are tracked. The modules also include “Weekly Assessments,” which may be given online or with paper and pencil. Weekly Assessments are used to monitor the progress of skills taught during the week. The answer key for the weekly assessment also indicates which TEKS are addressed and the “Depth of Knowledge” level for each question. Each module also includes a “Module Assessment,” which covers the material taught throughout the module. The answer key for the Module Assessment also includes the TEKS addressed and the Depth of Knowledge levels for each question.
The materials include intervention assessments, which provide “screening, diagnostic, and progress-monitoring assessments to identify students who are at risk for reading difficulties and provide recommendations on the amount of support students are likely to need during reading instruction.” Each grade level includes an inventory with a scoring guideline. “The Administering and Scoring Guidelines” provide the teacher-specific instructions for using the assessment successfully. The Guidelines also provide criteria for determining student mastery based on the student’s grade level and score on each section of the inventory. In second grade, students complete the word identification assessment and oral reading fluency assessment.
In Module 3, students learn to recognize the central idea and supporting evidence in the text Meet Me Halfway. During the lesson, the teacher models using details from the story to determine the topic and main idea by previewing the text and using details to answer the question “How can people work out disagreements?” During “Independent Practice,” teachers formatively assess students’ understanding of the central idea by monitoring their discussion and answers to questions. Students’ understanding of the central idea is summatively assessed in the Module 3 Inventory through the passage Emperor Penguins and Question 5, “What is the central idea of the article?”
Module 5 includes “Performance-Based Assessments” where students synthesize what they have learned from the module’s text set and demonstrate their topic knowledge by completing one of the module’s culminating activities. An optional written “Performance Task” is also provided at the end of each module in the “Teacher’s Guide.” The “Ongoing Formative Assessment” tools include the following: “Leveled Readers,” “Comprehension Quizzes,” “Running Records,” “1:1 Observation Records,” “Daily Lesson Checks,” and “Correct & Redirect” opportunities in the Teacher’s Guide. The summative assessment measures children’s proficiency in the critical skills covered in this module, including “Foundational Skills,” “Generative Vocabulary,” “Vocabulary Strategies,” “Comprehension/Literary Analysis,” “Grammar,” and “Writing.” Throughout the course of Module 5, students work through the stages of the writing process in the “Writing Workshop.” The writing can be evaluated using the rubric provided for the module’s writing genre in the “Resources” section of the Writing Workshop Teacher’s Guide.
The materials include year-long plans and supports for teachers to identify the needs of students and provide differentiated instruction to meet the needs of a range of learners to ensure grade-level success. Materials provide an overarching year-long plan for teachers to engage students in multiple grouping structures; plans are comprehensive and attend to differentiation to support students via many learning opportunities. The Teacher Edition materials include annotations and support for engaging students in the materials, as well as support for implementing ancillary and resource materials and student progress components. Annotations and ancillary materials provide support for student learning and assistance for teachers.
Examples include but are not limited to:
In the “Guiding Principles and Strategies” resource, the “Assessment and Differentiation” section includes an assessment timeline to use throughout the year to continuously monitor student progress and guidance on forming flexible groups based on assessment results. Teachers are directed to assess all children at the beginning of the year using “Intervention Assessments” for “Letter Identification,” “Phoneme Segmentation,” and “Letter-Sound Correspondence” and to use the data to create small groups for differentiated lessons. Materials provide a chart that aligns the type of small group with the data that could inform placement and resources that would be used during the instruction. For example, data to form guided reading groups could be gathered from the “Benchmark Assessment Kit,” “Oral Reading Records,” “Adaptive Growth Measure,” and “Student Growth Report,” and resources for guided reading lessons include “Rigby Leveled Readers,” “Take and Teach Lessons,” and “Tabletop Minilessons.” The materials also provide a weekly schedule as a sample of how to fit “Guided Reading,” “Targeted Skill Practice,” and “Targeted Language Development” into daily instruction.
In each module of the “Teacher’s Guide” for the program, the materials provide teachers guidance on differentiation for Guided Reading, Targeted Skill Practice, and Targeted Language Development. Teachers are able to provide differentiated instruction based on the students’ levels and skills needs. The materials also include an extensive leveled library for teachers to use while pulling students for guided reading instruction.
The materials provide a “Differentiated Support and Intervention” video that suggests giving diagnostic and progress monitoring assessments provided in the materials. Teachers can view the video to learn about various opportunities in which they can group students for instruction, as well as intervention opportunities. Online assessments allow access to data reports and grouping recommendations.
The materials include Take and Teach Lessons for use with leveled readers. This ancillary resource provides questions for the teacher to use as students work through the leveled reader in guided reading groups. Each Take and Teach lesson also includes embedded support to help teachers provide scaffolds for English Learners, as well as extension opportunities for students’ use after reading.
The Tabletop Minilesson “Tool Kit” is a flipchart to support differentiated small-group instruction. The flip chart includes a visual on one side for students to look at, while the teacher looks at the instructional strategies on the backside of the flipchart, for use during small-group lessons for reading and English language development.
The materials are accompanied by a TEKS-aligned scope and sequence outlining the essential knowledge and skills that are taught in the program and the order in which they are presented. The module topics that are the organizing structure for the program demonstrate similar topics that grow across the grades, and the grade-level scope and sequence documents show evidence of skills that build across grade-levels. Materials include additional supports to help teachers and administrators implement the materials as intended. Materials include a school year’s worth of literacy instruction, including realistic pacing guidance and routines and support for a 180-day schedule and enough material to extend over a 220-day schedule.
Examples include but are not limited to:
Learning objectives are arranged into twelve modules, each with three weeks of instruction. For each week, the materials list the TEKS that correspond with daily lessons, as well as the genre and text titles to be taught and the strategies and routines incorporated into the week’s lesson plans. Modules contain consistent framing elements (“Essential Questions,” “Learning Mindset,” “Build Knowledge and Language,” “Reading and Vocabulary,” “English Language Development,” “Foundational Skills,” “Inquiry and Research Project,” and “Writer’s Workshop”) so that standards are organized to connect from week to week.
Module topics and the texts within those topics connect from grade to grade. For example, the topic of community and citizenship threads through K-2 in these modules: “My Community Heroes” (Grade K), “My Family, My Community” (Grade 1), “Be a Super Citizen” (Grade 2). The topic of animals threads through Grades K-2 in these modules: “Animal Habitats” (Grade K), “Amazing Animals” (Grade 1), “Home Sweet Habitat” (Grade 2).
The materials include a Foundational Skills “Scope and Sequence” that provides the print concepts, phonics, phonological awareness, high-frequency words, fluency, spelling, and handwriting to be taught each week, for 36 weeks. Within each grade-level scope and sequence, there is evidence that skills build and connect across grades with increasing complexity. For example, phonics skills from Kindergarten are reviewed early in Grade 1 but at a faster pace. Similarly, phonics skills from Grade 1 are reviewed in Grade 2 with multisyllabic words.
Resources to support teachers in implementing the materials include the “Teacher’s Guide,” which acts as a daily and weekly framework for instruction and provides more detail on the program components outlined in the Scope and Sequence and weekly frameworks. A “Professional Learning Guide” is also provided, with guidance on routines and classroom management, teaching and planning, and assessment. In addition, a variety of professional services are offered for all customers, which includes teacher and administrator webinars. For example, a “Getting Started Leadership Webinar” for administrators provides an overview of the program’s organization, lesson design, and support resources.
On the program’s digital platform, “Ed: Your Friend in Learning”, teachers and administrators have access to materials that teachers and students are using, but with different permissions. Administrators do not have access to creating assignments or assigning grades, but they do have permission to create and share plans, create assessments, and access data reports. Administrators are able to access growth reports that can be used to evaluate the efficacy of the program across a grade level or for one teacher. Administrators also have access to features such as importing data files, setting rostering permissions for teachers, adding students to classes, and adding teacher accounts. All of these are features that will support teachers with the implementation of the materials.
The materials include 36 weeks of lesson plans; there are five full days in each week’s lesson plans, for a total of 180 days of instruction. The materials do not include a 220-day schedule, but the materials have enough depth to extend learning. Certain program resources, such as the “Tabletop Minilessons: Reading” can be used flexibly with any text in the program or classroom library books, and the “Foundational Skills and Word Study Studio” component contains foundational skills lessons that extend beyond a grade-level scope and sequence if needed to expand to a 220-day schedule.
The visual design of the student edition is neither distracting nor chaotic. The materials include appropriate use of white space and design that supports and does not distract from student learning. Pictures and graphics are supportive of student learning and engagement without being visually distracting.
Examples include but are not limited to:
Materials are visually engaging without being overly stimulating. The text size is appropriate for the primary learner to easily see and read. The materials include appropriate use of white space and design that supports and does not distract from student learning. The edge of the page consistently contains at least one inch of white space around the perimeter. When students are asked to write or draw, a large space is provided in order to allow students to first draw their thoughts before writing sentences to match their pictures. These qualities are true of both the digital resources students interact with online as well as the printable PDF versions students can download and use in person.
The pictures contain kid-friendly images that draw the reader’s interest. Students see illustrations from award-winning authors. The images in nonfiction literature often show real children engaged in activities relatable to the student. The illustrations in fiction stories use artwork similar to that in award-winning children’s literature. Illustrations support and extend the text. The art is consistent from page to page, with effective use of line, color, texture, and white space. Graphics engage and captivate the reader’s attention.
In Module 2, in Words About Discovering Our World, students click on one of three vocabulary word cards: “Each card shows a word about the topic. Choose a word to find out more about it. Each virtual card has one word and a related picture (examine, identify, record) with a sentence on the back (“When you identify something, you say what it is.”) The text is focused, and white space is present both on the display page and on each card.
In Module 5, Captain Cat Keeps Her Cool, white space is provided in the margins and between the lines and paragraphs of text so that the text is readable and not overwhelming. The included illustration and text box relate to the information in the text, do not distract from the story, and would enable students to more easily follow along and make sense of the narrative.
In Module 7, Is The Wise Owl Wise? contains printed text that takes up no more than half of any given page, and plenty of white space is allotted both in the margins and between lines. Included illustrations are relevant and engaging.
Technology components included are appropriate for grade-level students and provide support for learning. Technology supports and enhances student learning as appropriate, as opposed to distracting from it, and includes appropriate teacher guidance.
Examples include but are not limited to:
All materials are available on the digital platform, with opportunities to print hard copies as desired. Throughout the curriculum, the materials include online read-alouds for teachers to use if they did not purchase all of the individual books. The read-alouds have the option to be listened to or read by the teacher. Pages turn just like the pages of a book. There is the option to highlight text as the computer reads aloud so that students can follow along as they listen to the story.
The program also includes “iRead,” which is “a digital, foundational reading program.” iRead provides “daily practice, as well as acceleration for children who are ready and early intervention for those at risk.” It also provides the following:
The materials allow teachers to give students assignments to complete on their own. Students can read a passage or listen to a passage read aloud and take a test on the selection. The program grades the student’s answers and provides feedback for teachers.
Students can interact with texts online and add annotations. The program contains places for students to respond to text-dependent questions.
“Get Curious” videos introduce lesson topics, are engaging, are relevant to lesson topics, and introduce background knowledge and schema that will support student understanding of the reading and writing that they will be doing within the modules. “Media Selection” videos readdress the lesson topics and provide another perspective on material learned during the lesson. For example, Module 7’s Get Curious video, “The Story of Me,” shows many video examples of people and their thoughts, beliefs, and accomplishments and uses module vocabulary. At the end of the video, the question “If someone wrote an account of your life, what would it be about?” sets a purpose for further learning. The Media Selection video “Roberto Clemente” gives information about Clemente and his significant achievements as a groundbreaking baseball player.
Read the Full Report for Technology
(pdf, 433.29 KB)
Read the Full Report for Professional Learning Opportunities
(pdf, 317.84 KB)
Read the Full Report for Additional Language Supports
(pdf, 234.61 KB)