Dr Christine Braid, Tātai Angitu, Massey University
It is useful to consider an overall and general scope and sequence. A sequence particular to a book series is helpful, but it is important to consider a broader view when considering children’s progress.
MATCHING TO DECODABLE BOOK SERIES
Teachers can match the skills focus from the above progression to the decodable book series they are using. It is important to be able to say what the learning and teaching focus is for the child/group rather than just what book they are reading. Focus on the skill to teach and select the appropriate book. A teacher can also select the book from the sequence and teach the skills needed to successfully read that text.
PROGRESS MONITORING AND ASSESSMENT POINTS
Progress monitoring will occur at end of each book stage and within lessons. Ongoing assessments form an important part of progress monitoring and knowing when progress is concerning. Teachers can use the assessment points specific to the book series they are using.
For more standardised assessments, the following suggestions ensure we are using reliable data checks.
SUMMATIVE AND COMPARATIVE ASSESSMENTS
MATCHING AND PROGRESSING TO COLOUR WHEEL
It is difficult to match decodable texts to non-decodable books and the colour wheel. Consider a Burt word test during Step 1c (approximately fourth term at school) and trial colour wheel books as indicated by the Burt score (eg scoring 22 on Burt equals 6 year reading age and may indicate green level). Continue with decodable texts and a systematic, explicit approach to teaching the code but consider that for some children, one of the small group lessons in the week could include expanding into less controlled texts. Select colour wheel texts that have word patterns that match the level of word pattern knowledge.
NB: When moving to colour wheel books, it is vital that students continue to use the decoding strategy of using the word patterns, just as taught for decodable texts. Do not use a 3-cue approach of looking at picture to work out unknown words.
POSSIBLE COLOUR WHEEL MATCH (BUT CHECK USING BURT)