The Google Doc for this assignment is here:
The website I created as a teacher resource is here:
Here is the narrative portion of this assignment. For the remainder of the tables and such please open the Google Doc linked above.
This Middle School earned 5 Distinction Designations for 2018-2019. (Reading, Science, Math, Comparative Academic Growth, and Postsecondary Readiness) We have 31% Economically Disadvantaged Students and 10% ELs. (TEA School Report Card) Our school aims to earn all 7 distinctions.
I looked at the First Administration of STAAR Reading Results (2018-19) that showed the Gap results for the Middle School compared to our District results. Our Campus Improvement Plan (CIP) is data-driven, but not TEKS based.
CIP Problem Statement: “English Language Learners meeting the STAAR Approaches Grade Level standard have significant gaps in Reading, Math, Science and Social Studies compared to district averages. This includes LEP through M2.” The strategies to improve this gap is more teacher training, dedicating PLC time to EL strategies for lessons, and increase parent involvement.
I met with one of our RTI specialists to analyze STAAR data to see which TEKS were specifically weaknesses for our EL students and all students in general. The data was quite interesting. In 6th grade, weak TEKS were 6.10F Fig 19e, 6.2e, and 6.8a. However, none of those were weaknesses by the time they reach 8th grade. This means we closed the gap in that area. But new gaps open up over time.
For 8th grade, an area of weakness was 8.3 fig. 19d with 68% getting those answers correct. However, in 6th grade, they get 89% correct. TEKS 8.6c is a weakness, but that TEKS score isn’t listed in 6th-grade scores.
Not one of the TEKS was a weakness from 6th grade through 8th grade consistently. The goal is to get them strong in all the TEKS before we send them off to 9th grade, so I looked at our areas of weakness for 8th grade. TEKS 9 Fig 19 D is one that starts off with an 81% accuracy in 6th grade, drop to 73% in 7th grade, then falls to 67% in 8th grade. Clearly, we are not teaching this TEKS well at my school. I looked at the TEKS and found this is about author’s purpose. I compared the progression of the TEKS and found most of it to be the same from 6th-8th grade except 6.9E and 6.9G. E deals with terms like omniscient, limited POV, subjective and objective POV, multiple POV, and Irony. G is all debate terms such as rhetorical devices, logical fallacies, loaded language, sweeping generalizations, bandwagon appeals, and circular reasoning. Rhetoric is not something already built into our district curriculum, so I can see where some lessons on this topic would be of great benefit.
Since our ELs have the most difficulty in being successful on STAAR and vocabulary acquisition is quite often the problem, this will be a primary focus of this lesson.