Has My Child Reached the Reading Benchmarks for Kindergarten?

Has My Child Reached the Reading Benchmarks for Kindergarten?

The Kindergarten school year is coming to an end and as a parent your thoughts are probably turning towards first grade. Is your child ready for first grade reading? How do you know? Here is a list of benchmark reading accomplishments for kindergarten that was included in a report prepared by a National Academy of Sciences panel titled Preventing Reading difficulties in Young Children, Catherine E. Snow.  Kindergarten Reading Benchmarks.

 

Your Child…

Has reached the reading benchmarks for Kindergarten if he or she:

  • Knows the parts of a book and their functions.
  • Begins to track print when listening to a familiar text being read or when rereading own writing.
  • “Reads” familiar texts emergently, i.e., not necessarily verbatim from the print alone.
  • Recognizes and can name all uppercase and lowercase letters.
  • Understands that the sequence of letters in a written word represents the sequence of sounds (phonemes) in a spoken word (alphabetic principle).
  • Learns many, though not all, one-to-one letter-sound correspondences.
  • Recognizes some words by sight, including a few very common ones (a, the, I, my, you, is, are).
  • Uses new vocabulary and grammatical constructions in own speech.
  • Makes appropriate switches from oral to written language situations.
  • Notices when simple sentences fail to make sense.
  • Connects information and events in texts to life, and life to text experiences.
  • Retells, reenacts, or dramatizes stories or parts of stories.
  • Listens attentively to books teacher reads to class.
  • Can name some book titles and authors.
  • Demonstrates familiarity with a number of types or genres of text (e.g., storybooks, expository texts, poems, newspapers, and everyday print such as signs, notices, labels).
  • Correctly answers questions about stories read aloud.
  • Makes predictions based on illustrations or portions of stories.
  • Demonstrates understanding that spoken words consist of a sequence of phonemes.
  • Given spoken sets like “dan, dan, den,” can identify the first two as being the same and the third as different.
  • Given spoken sets like “dak, pat, zen,” can identify the first two as sharing a same sound.
  • Given spoken segments, can merge them into a meaningful target word.
  • Given a spoken word, can produce another word that rhymes with it.
  • Independently writes many uppercase and lowercase letters.
  • Uses phonemic awareness and letter knowledge to spell independently (invented or creative spelling).
  • Writes (unconventionally) to express own meaning.
  • Builds a repertoire of some conventionally spelled words.
  • Shows awareness of distinction between “kid writing” and conventional orthography.
  • Writes own name (first and last) and the first names of some friends or classmates.
  • Can write most letters and some words when they are dictated.

 

Has your child NOT reached these reading benchmarks for Kindergarten?

If you are worried that your child did not reach the reading benchmarks for Kindergarten, keep in mind that about 80% of kids learn to read and write with very little instruction. The other 20% do not learn that way. They need things to be broken down and need to be taught. This 20 percent needs early intervention. With intensive instruction, your child can get on track.  If you are in need of a really great reading intervention program, please check out the PRIDE Reading Program here.  

 

Thank you for reading my post today!


Karina Richland, M.A., is the author of the PRIDE Reading Program, a multisensory Orton-Gillingham reading, writing and comprehension curriculum that is available worldwide for parents, tutors, teachers and homeschoolers of struggling readers. Karina has an extensive background in working with students of all ages and various learning modalities. She has spent many years researching learning differences and differentiated teaching practices. You can reach her @ info@pridereadingprogram.com or visit the website at www.pridereadingprogram.com

Who Should Attend an IEP Meeting?

Who Should Attend an IEP Meeting?

IEP Attendees – Who Must Attend, and Who is Permitted?

As we approach end-of-school-year IEP season, I always receive questions regarding who should attend IEP meetings. This year, especially, I have heard from an increased number of parents asking whether the proposed list of IEP attendees is appropriate. Below is a guide with information regarding which IEP team members are mandatory, and which team members are permitted to attend, but are not necessarily required to participate.

 

Mandatory IEP Participants:

  • At least 1 general education teacher, if the student is or may participate in the general education setting;
  • At least 1 special education teacher/provider;
  • A representative of the public agency (school district/LEA) who is qualified to provide, or supervise the provision of, specially designed instruction to meet the unique needs of children with disabilities; is knowledgeable about the general education curriculum; and is knowledgeable about the availability of resources of the public agency;
  • At least one person who is able to interpret the results of any evaluations being reviewed (when appropriate/necessary);
  • The Parents (or education rights holder); and
  • The Student, if the Student has turned 18 and holds his/her educational rights.

 

Permissible IEP Participants:

  • Additional teachers and service providers, if available and permitted by the LEA;
  • Any other individuals who have special knowledge regarding the student, including service professionals;
  • The student may attend, when appropriate; and
  • An attorney and/or advocate.

 

When is Attendance Not Necessary:

A mandatory team member is not required to attend the IEP meeting if the Parent and Public Agency consent, and that member’s area of service is not being modified or discussed at the IEP meeting.

 

Excusing Members:

A mandatory team member may be excused, even when the meeting involves discussing the member’s area of curriculum and services, if the Parents and Public Agency both consent, and the member submits prior written input regarding the development of the IEP.

 

Should You Give Notice of Additional Participants?

You do not need to give notice if you plan to bring additional participants to the IEP meeting, but doing so is generally advised. This will ensure that adequate seating is made available. Additionally, if you intend to bring an attorney to the IEP meeting, the Public Agency has a right to bring an attorney, as well. To avoid a meeting being cancelled due to a lack of notice, it is generally advised to notify the Public Agency if you intend to bring legal representation. The District is also not prohibited from having an attorney at IEP meetings when a Parent does not obtain counsel.

 

Key Take-Aways:

  • The school team can choose which teacher(s) will be available for the IEP meeting. If you have a specific teacher that you feel should participate in the meeting, you should make this request in advance. There is no guarantee, but it is appropriate to ask, and explain why this provider’s input is most valuable. You can also request written updates from any teachers who cannot attend.
  • The Public Agency representative is often the school principal, but will sometimes be a director of special education, or program specialist. If you aren’t sure, just ask.
  • You hold the right to excuse mandatory team members for all or part of the meeting. The Public Agency needs to make all mandatory team members available for an IEP meeting within the statutory timelines.

 

Thank you Jazmine Gelfand for being our guest blogger for this week! 

 


Jazmine Gelfand is a special education attorney who offers education and disability legal representation to the greater San Diego community. She is dedicated to zealously representing children with disabilities and their families, through a collaborative and results-oriented approach. Visit her website at www.specialedlegalcare.com or email her at Jazmine@SpecialEdLegalCare.com

Methods For Teaching Vocabulary So That It Sticks!

Methods For Teaching Vocabulary So That It Sticks!

Children typically start Kindergarten knowing around 5000 words. During the next three grades they learn at least one thousand more new vocabulary words per year and by Grade 4, they are learning on average from one thousand to three thousand new vocabulary words per year! According to research, only some words are learned through direct vocabulary instruction in the classrooms or home study programs and all the rest is learned through reading itself! Now you understand why reading a lot is so important in the development of vocabulary. Here is the research – if you want to dig in to it a little deeper. 

Reading a lot is the very best way for kids to learn vocabulary, but today I am going to focus on the other part of learning vocabulary. The methods and teaching of it. Although many strategies are effective for students with varying abilities, the following methods always work best for my kids to help make those vocabulary words really “stick”:

How to Introduce Vocabulary Words during Reading

1. Use “child-friendly” language with your child when explaining the words by using everyday language that the child can understand and connect with.

2. Personalize the word to your child that includes references to “you,” “something,” and “someone” to help your child make a personal connection with their own lives.

3. Have your child create their own examples of the word.

After your child understands the meaning of the vocabulary word it is time to write down that word and practice it. This is where you pull out those index cards and markers. Have the kiddos write the word on one side and write the definition on the back side. I review the flashcards with my kids constantly ( I’m talking all year) and it is really encouraging and motivating for the kids to see their vocabulary bundle grow bigger and bigger. I try not to over drill so whenever I can I use some fun review activities. Here are some that my kids really enjoy:

How to Practice Vocabulary Words

in a fun way!

Click on the toggles below:

Draw the Word

Have your kids draw an image of each vocabulary word. Make the images funny and memorable so they really stick in the child’s mind. You can also use this drawing on their flashcards.

Play Charades

Make a game out of learning the vocabulary words –  like playing charades.  Take turns where your child has to act out the word and you have to guess it, and then the other way around.  

Write a Story

You can have your child incorporate the vocabulary words into a fun and creative story.  This will really help them spell and practice using the words in sentences.

 

Vocabulary Word of the Day

This is the very best way to practice vocabulary and use the entire family in the process.  Post one of the flashcards up on the front door.  Every time your child walks in and out of the door they have to give you the word in a sentence.  Make the whole family participate in it – so much fun! You can also make it Vocabulary of the Week – if the child (or anyone else in the family) needs extra practice time.


A Word About Audiobooks…

Listen to audiobooks regularly!  Audio books will help expand your child’s listening vocabulary. Later on, when your child runs into the same word in print, they will be better able to decipher the word and its meaning by having already had the exposure to it beforehand. I always have my kids listen to a novel first, before reading it. It gives them the pronunciation of those difficult to pronounce locations, names and other Proper Nouns that they struggle with when reading. My local library offers free audiobooks with a library card, see if your local library offers the same service. If not you can purchase audiobooks from Amazon or  iBookstore. If your child has been diagnosed with a learning disability you can also look into Learning Ally which is a non profit volunteer organization.

I hope these vocabulary methods and strategies work as well with your kids as they do with mine. If you have any other methods or tips that work for you, please include them in the comments section of this post. If you enjoyed reading this post, you might also enjoy reading Spelling With Letter Tiles.

Thank you so much for visiting my Blog today!


Karina Richland, M.A., is the author of the PRIDE Reading Program, a multisensory Orton-Gillingham reading, writing and comprehension curriculum that is available worldwide for parents, tutors, teachers and homeschoolers of struggling readers. Karina has an extensive background in working with students of all ages and various learning modalities. She has spent many years researching learning differences and differentiated teaching practices. You can reach her @ info@pridereadingprogram.com or visit the website at www.pridereadingprogram.com

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