Preparation for the NWEA Assessment
Students who have never taken the MAP assessment should view the video and go through the practice warm-up test available at
o MAP Warm-up
o MAP for Primary Grades Warm-up
Students who need Mouse skill practice before the assessment should be guided with the basic mouse skills and have time for practice. Websites that would help a student with these skills include:
One of the challenges some students face with the MAP assessment is not being familiar with the calculator that pops up during some Math questions. In addition, students may be asked to complete computation tasks without the availability of a calculator (to identify their computation skills). Following are some websites that may be helpful in helping students prepare:
Review with students why they are taking this assessment and what are characteristics of the test experience emphasizing:
1. Students will be participating in a computerized adaptive assessment that varies for each student taking the test.
2. Almost all students get approximately 50% of the questions right because of the way the computer selects questions for students.
3. A student will see questions based on their latest performance or current grade level (if they have never taken the assessment before). Questions will increase or decrease in difficulty within a goal strand until the computer can identify the range of skill level, or RIT range, based on the questions the student gets correct.
4. The results from the spring assessment helps schools and teachers understand the progress that has been made since the last assessment and what students are ready to learn next to plan curriculum and differentiated instruction.
5. The results will also help identify students who may need additional support or interventions to ensure they meet end of the year goals. Since MAP results can be a factor in determining students’ promotion to the next grade (3rd, 6th and 8th grades), the results can help identify students that are off-track for the minimum percentile rankings associated with the CPS promotion policy and create action plans for those students.
6. Emphasize reading the passages and problems thoroughly before answering questions. You can go back to reference the reading passages but cannot change answers once the student moves to the next question.
Schools across the district have a variety of technology available. Schools should identify staff that will ensure the computers that students will be using meet the criteria outlined in the NWEA Assessment Readiness Guide that is maintained on the CPS Knowledge Center at http://www. kc.cps.edu
Posters and “Do your best” reminders
The testing environment (and throughout a school) should include, when possible, encouraging phrases and signs that remind students why they are taking the test and what happens when they do their very best.
Incentives that single out students because they are NOT meeting goals should be avoided. Class goals measuring overall or average gains (using average scores or growth) for the class are strategic as every student contributes to the success of meeting the goals. Individual goal and progress towards goal conversations should be one on one with students.
Teachers should have been delivering differentiated instruction since the last testing results and progress monitoring to ensure that students are moving towards goals. Strategically, these last few weeks can be elevated to prepare students for the more advanced mathematics problems, reading passages and questions they will see if they are making progress. Possible strategies:
Math and Reading
· Review the vocabulary or the technical terms of math and reading that are available on http://fortheteachers.org or the DesCartes documents for their RIT from their last assessment as well as those 1-2 RIT bands higher. These are the words that are likely to be integrated into questions and it would be helpful for small groups to explore the terms for higher RIT bands.
· Utilize practice and sample test questions that are targeted at higher RIT bands than students scored at on their last assessment. Although we do not attest that the test questions available on http://prepdog.org/RIT-menu.html are perfectly aligned with our assessment, they are still sample questions with a variety of passages and problems.
· Review with students the questions at each level and category on the RIT Reference Charts that are available on the NWEA website and the CPS Knowledge Center.
· Many school districts across the country have developed website links to resources that are targeted at specific RIT levels. One district, as an example, has provided a list of sites by goal and RIT: http://clinton.k12.wi.us/maptest_sites/map_resources.html .
· NWEA’s http://rittoresource.org provides a path to searching for websites and resources that are connected to the CCSS goals at various RIT and grade levels. Look for levels that would challenge students above their last assessment results.
· Create school wide campaigns that include challenging areas for students such as measurement, compare and contrast, or prediction, and ensure that all teachers including P.E., music, art, science, social studies, etc. touch the concept and integrate it into conversations during the school day.
· Identify the students who have trended negative in classroom assessments and activities and make sure that other adults in the school building know that you are concerned. Sometimes, just having the security guard or the office clerk, for example, ask how they are doing can make a student feel that someone has noticed that they may need some help.
· In all classes, especially Science and Social Studies, ensure students are reading text that is at a challenge level (just above their last known Lexile) to prepare for more complex text passages. Achieve 3000, http://newsela.com and http://fortheteachers.org are resources for accessing passages at various Lexile levels.
· Practice reading passages and then answering questions as there is evidence that students often move ahead to the questions before taking time to read the passage. You can always go back to the passage but once you have answered a question, you cannot go back and change the answer.
· Endurance for students who do not have the appropriate math facts memorized is a problem for many students. If, for example, multiplication has to be done on scratch paper for basic computations, students will need more time. Utilize resources such as http://extramath.org or flash cards to help students memorize the addition, subtraction, multiplication or division facts that are appropriate for their grade/RIT level.
· Measurement and Data is a math strand that CPS students are often challenged by. Integrate these concepts into P.E. or have a measurement day that everything gets measured in the school in a variety of ways.
· Students that are ahead of most of the class should be appropriately challenged. They may be ready to learn concepts that we may not be ready to teacher, but we can utilize resources including Khan Academy to support their exposure and exploration of concepts that they may see on their next assessment
New Resources at the CPS Virtual Library
STEM Field Trips with United Skates of America
The CPS Virtual Library (http://cps.edu/library) has many new resources that are available to all CPS teachers and students from school and home. Also, we recently launched the World Language Collection for students and the Professional Virtual Library for educators, Additions include:
Check out the Knowledge Center Libraries page at https://sites.google.com/a/cps.edu/kc/curriculum/content-area-subpages/library-science for more information on district-wide library resources. Consult your school librarian for support on connecting virtual library resources to your school's library resources. Contact Lisa Perez, Library Manager (email@example.com,773-553-6212).
United Skates of America is a new educational field trip program that immerses students in STEM through roller skating. Students will learn that STEM is all around them, it is not just a concept found in science labs by participating in an hour of hands on activities taught by a dynamic educator. After the lesson, the students participate in two hours of the physical fitness activity of roller skating. We offer these great lessons for grades K-12.
The STEM field trip program at United consists of 5 lessons. Teachers can choose a lesson for their students or do all 5 modules throughout the year. The modules offered include:
If you I would like more information about these great field trips or to see accompanying lessons plans, contact Alexandria Wallace at 312-747-2602 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Nonfiction Reading and Informational Writing Units