How do we intervene with our kids?

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As testing season approaches, classrooms across the state are hunkering down and making last ditch efforts to prepare students for the state assessments. The question boils down to this: are these last-ditch efforts really working? The reason the question is asked is because if the strategies and instructional approaches used during this crunch are so successful, why are we not using them throughout the school year? Don’t our students deserve this same intensity throughout the year? Although well-meaning, these “interventions” may not help our students as much as we hope. True enough, there may be pertinent information that soaks into their minds, but to have our students become truly successful, not only on state assessments but any other reading and writing assessment, boils down to these key factors:
• phonological awareness;
• phonics;
• fluency;
• vocabulary; and
• comprehension
In order for our students to succeed, they must be fluid in these areas of reading. So, the question now becomes, how well do we understand these key reading components? By understanding these skills, we are better able to successfully prepare our students for all of the reading assessments they will encounter.

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