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Comprehension For Grade 3

Cecil Said:

Have you used the Specific Skill series, especially Getting the Main Idea by Richard A....?

We Answered:

It was a good program for individualized instruction within the classroom. There are other components that go with it. There are also comprehension skills. Each group has a booklet on the skill being taught. The child can work through several "units" a day. As the child works through the booklet the "specific skill" is being taught and hopefully mastered. It is worth a try with the student you mentioned.
Have you heard of READ 180? It is a computerized program that my district bought for students reading two or more grade levels behind. It is phenomenal but expensive.

Danielle Said:

What is your opinion on standardized tests?

We Answered:

Hello Leafy :)
{are you who I think you are?!}

We have exactly the same problem here in Britain ~ what they call 'teaching to the test'. And it starts in Primary school. In fact, they've even started testing children in nurseries, to measure how soon they can walk, talk, level of vocabulary, recognise colours, etc. But they seem to have missed the point that every child is unique, and there is no real set age at which they should be capable of these things.

And then we get to SATs. There was a time when these only happened in Year 9 {age 14} and they were 'internal' tests {marked by the teachers}, but now children have to sit them when they are 7, 11, and 14, and they are all 'external' tests, used to rank the school's abilities. Teachers have to shove everything else out of the curriculum to make room to focus on Science, English and Maths.

GCSEs, AS, A2.
When I was still at school, the only two external exams were GCSEs at 16, and A-Levels at 18. But the Government {yes, this is all because of *government* interference}, decided that too many children were droping out at 17, and needed another year of exams to keep them focused. Unfortunately, these exams mean nothing. From the modular Science tests taken throughout the year, all the way through GCSEs, AS, and A2, students are allowed to resit them *multiple times*, until they get the result they want!

Studies have proven that British schoolchildren are the most tested, and yet often the worst performing in English and Maths. We have students entering university {because, Labour believes that every child should go to university, even if they have 0 academic aptitude}, and having to take extra classes in English and Maths because their spelling and adding is so bad. And then we have graduates leaving university with a degree {often in a useless subject}, but no common sense between their ears, and they expect to walk into any job just because they have a degree ~ and even then, some of them still can't read and write properly.

Back in the old days, teachers knew their students, and could tell who was capable of what, and pinpoint who needed extra help in subjects. At the same time, they were teaching a much greater bredth of lessons. Now, kids don't go to school to learn, just to be tested.

When I have kids, I'll be home-schooling...

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