Monday, December 19, 2011

A Time Saver for K-2 Teachers: The Early Benchmark Literacy Assessment Series

As an experienced kindergarten teacher, searching for ways to maximize instructional teaching time with my students was one of my foremost goals. My students were formally tested three times a year and this was a very time consuming task as each child needed to be tested individually. With budget cuts, paraprofessional assistance was not offered, and that left the assessing up to me, the teacher. There was also the added dilemma of how to manage 25-30 other five year olds while testing individuals, not to mention the loss of quality instructional time. During each testing period, it generally took a minimum of 10 minutes to assess each child for language arts alone. In a classroom of 25 students, this meant over 250 quality instructional minutes lost, three times a year.
The Galileo Early Literacy Benchmark Assessment Series (ELBAS) tests offers an effective way to get literacy testing done in a short period of time. In a computer lab situation, the entire class can be tested on standards based objectives in 30-45 minutes. In a classroom environment, one or two students can be testing independently while the teacher continues to teach. The test responses are automatically recorded and scored online and are available to the teacher to help guide instruction. There is no loss of instructional time and the potential for frustrating interruptions and behavioral issues are no longer an issue. The ELBAS tests are offered for grades K-2 and inform teachers if their students are on track to pass state testing benchmarks by the end of grade 3. The ELBAS tests are a positive experience for students and teachers alike, help streamline assessment, and offer a wonderful time-saving solution for teachers during assessment periods. In addition, ATI can analyze the assessments and provide Developmental Levels to show growth over the course of the year.
Click here to see more information about the early literacy assessments.
-Laura Babcock, Educational Management Services Coordinator

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