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Posted on October 19, 2015 12:28 am
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eryMav
eryMav
Reps: 75
Reading Comprehension
I teach world history in the resource setting and I have noticed that my students really struggle on end of unit assessments. We utilize common assessments as a department, so my students take the same tests and answer the same questions as general ed students and honors students. Most questions on the tests are all Depth of Knowledge (DOK) levels 2, 3 and even 4. While my students seem to understand the content through discussions and activities, they do not perform well on the tests because of their struggles with reading comprehension. If they cannot comprehend the question how are they supposed to demonstrate their knowledge of the content? What are some strategies I can utilize to help my students raise their test scores?
 
     
     
 
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Solution 1
Posted October 19, 2015 12:48 am

aXyheN
aXyheN
Reps: 114
I would use a modified version of the same test. For some students, eliminating answer choices could greatly immprove test scores. Others may need the test read aloud to them.
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Natalie Taylor
Natalie Taylor
Reps: 200
This is a very good and detailed response. Great idea.
  Posted on: February 22, 2016 2:31 pm

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Solution 2
Posted October 19, 2015 2:23 am

qasytu
qasytu
Reps: 107
Using the wording of the questions, develop a list of vocabulary words that typical assessments use. Also, use one question a day as the way to begin a class. Do not have the students write any of the question or answer choices down, but have a detailed discussion about which answer choice to use and how the others would not work. Are you able to read the test, questions and answer choices to them. Perhaps this would help because they would be seeing it while you are reading it and therefore it would arrive at their brain through two different paths. As the ones that make the test if you are able to reword any questions that may not be easily understood. Also, the department may want to meet and review all of the responses as a whole. There could be many questions that may need to be reworded or eliminated if too many students across the board missed it.
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Natalie Taylor
Natalie Taylor
Reps: 200
This is a very good and detailed response. Great idea.
  Posted on: February 22, 2016 2:32 pm

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Solution 3
Posted October 25, 2015 1:36 am

vapaju
vapaju
Reps: 126
Create questions that mirror the Depth of Knowledge (DOK) 1 through 4 questions on the assessment. Take one question at a time. I suggest starting with lower DOK question first. Then set the students into pairs or small collaborative groups. Present the question on the board and provide students with a copy. Next proceed to press and release the students. Ask what is the first action we take to answer the question. Give the students 1 minute to share and agree on what should be next as a group. Have a few groups share out what they thought was next. Then tell them the first step they should have taken. Have then do it if they have not. Continue in this until the question is answered. Walking the student through the steps of answering the questions will give them a critical thinking approach to answering the questions. In addition, gradually increasing the difficulty of the questions practiced will help the students to know what amount of thought is needed for different types of problems.
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Natalie Taylor
Natalie Taylor
Reps: 200
This is a very good and detailed response. Great idea.
  Posted on: February 22, 2016 2:32 pm

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Solution 4
Posted October 23, 2015 1:13 am

LeHaWy
LeHaWy
Reps: 154
I would suggest teaching the students academic vocabulary first. This way they can understand exactly what the question is asking them to do. Then I would teach them strategies for seeing how many things the question is asking them to do. Most questions may have 2-3 parts. Model breaking down the questions and the thinking process. I have my students number the different parts and circle the academic vocabulary, such as analyze or explain.
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Natalie Taylor
Natalie Taylor
Reps: 200
This is a very good and detailed response. Great idea.
  Posted on: February 22, 2016 2:32 pm

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Solution 5
Posted February 28, 2016 8:28 pm

SuGaNe
SuGaNe
Reps: 226
One solution could be to give students the test questions ahead of time, and discuss what they mean as the lesson is being taught. Another solution is to give students the test orally.
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Solution 6
Posted October 19, 2015 2:23 am

MePyJy
MePyJy
Reps: 205
You have said that many of the studnet are struggling becuase of reading comprehension so that answer would be to start there. I would put forth that tests be put on orally or to have the studnets to testing online with programs that can read it to them. THis way the they can understand the questions and get past thier reading problems. This can even help with reading problems becuase once they hear the word it can help them learn it.
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Natalie Taylor
Natalie Taylor
Reps: 200
This is a very good and detailed response. Great idea.
  Posted on: February 22, 2016 2:32 pm

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Solution 7
Posted February 25, 2017 4:10 pm

Melissa Dison
Melissa Dison
Reps: 327
Hi eryMav,

I totally agree with qasytu's suggestions about teaching vocabulary used in the exam questions, reading test answers to the students, and meeting with other teachers to see if the students are having the same struggle. I love the suggestion of beginning class with a question a day and discussing the possible solutions. I think the most important thing he addresses here is targeting key vocabulary and teaching the students test taking strategies. In my classroom, we use a CUBES method for solving problems. C stands for Circle, U stands for Underline, B stands for Box, E stands for Evaluate/Eliminate, and S stands for show your work. You could help students remember this by putting an anchor chart on the classroom wall. Basically, the students read the question and circle key words that they need to understand to solve the problem. Then, they underline what they are being asked. Then, they box the action word, such as "solve" or "explain" then they evaluate the possible answer choice and eliminate as many as they can. If appropriate for the exam, students will make sure to show their work. This strategy has worked great in the classrooms I have taught. It really makes students stop and think about what they are being asked to do. Hope this helps!

Melissa
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Solution 8
Posted October 9, 2016 11:40 pm

JabuDu
JabuDu
Reps: 202
If the students do well with conversations, could you read the test aloud for the students. IF not, depending on the amount of students maybe have the test be a verbal conversation with them independently to assess them.
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Solution 9
Posted October 12, 2016 2:56 pm

PeQyGa
PeQyGa
Reps: 201
If they show that they can understand these questions during discussions I would simply read the questions aloud. This would give them the opportunity to better understand the question and give them an opportunity to answer it correctly.
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Solution 10
Posted February 26, 2017 9:34 pm

eHebah
eHebah
Reps: 207
Teach an explain the questions before hand. Not the exact questions but mock ones. Getting them familiar with how these questions are worded. Also, these students may need to be tested know for sure what is going on with them.
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Solution 11
Posted February 25, 2018 8:44 am

geSuNy
geSuNy
Reps: 205
Exposure to DOK questions on a regular basis would benefit your students during testing. A DOK question can be a bell work activity with a reward for the right answer. If students comprehend the information during classroom discussion and when completing classroom tasks, then I would work on teaching my students test taking skills on a daily basis. Make the activity fun and reward for students who participate.
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Solution 12
Posted February 26, 2016 6:21 am

eQyVuj
eQyVuj
Reps: 200
Create a different kind of assessment that fits the needs of the class. If that worksheet is not work than brainstorm other ways to assess them
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