Assessments Should Drive Instruction
As teachers, we know that assessment drives instruction. Assessments are necessary for determining what skills a student has or still needs practice with to master. But if you have been in any education for any length of time, you know that there are some assessments that are just not valuable and/or accurate. Can I get an amen?
When I first started teaching kindergarten, we were required by my district to collect all of the ‘typical’ kindergarten data, but three times a year. I’m sure you can imagine my frustration at trying to get at least 10 different literacy/math assessments done on 20+ kids and did I mention I used to teach half-day kindergarten?! I tried to manage all of these assessments with a huge binder of different assessments, all inside individual page protectors. I also had a folder for each student with their name and individual completed assessments. Yes…the paperwork was a fire hazard waiting to happen!!
The Best Assessment Tool for Kindergarten & First Grade
Then along came ESGI and it saved my teaching life! 🙂 For reals. If you are not familiar with ESGI Assessment Software, basically it makes it a million times easier to collect the much needed, yet relevant data we need to drive our classroom and small group instruction. It also makes it easy to track each student’s growth. It has saved me so much time, paper piles, and aggravation! I love that I can quickly pull up any student in my classroom and print out the most current data that I have for them. This comes in handy when parents or other staff members request it, or if I attend a data meeting.
ESGI has just about every type of kindergarten assessment you need or want and best of all, these assessments were created by TEACHERS who have taught or are currently teaching in a KINDERGARTEN classroom! But if you want, you can make your own assessments too, especially if you have certain sight words, etc that you need to assess.
You can access the assessments with a desktop, or hand-held device, including your phone! This makes assessing so convenient. I have even assessed out on our playground! Their software is also easy to navigate. All of the tabs and accessible printables are clearly marked, but if you happen to have an issue, ESGI has quick and efficient customer service and tech support. Honestly, their quick response to any question I have had is one of the reasons why I love them so much!
Another HUGE benefit of using ESGI is that you can instantly print parent letters with each student’s current data, along with flash cards for the skills that they need to work on. I cannot even tell you how much time this has saved me! Years ago, I used to make individual sets of flash cards or packets of practice work and it was so time consuming. But not anymore! I simply print out each child’s current data, along with the parent letter and flash cards.
I can accomplish this task for all of my students in less than 45 minutes! It makes progress report time and even parent conference time a breeze! The letters are individualized for each student and includes the mastered skills and the skills that still need practice. As the teacher, you can print out pie graphs or progress line graphs to share with students, parents, or even admin!
By using ESGI, I have saved tons of time and paper! All my assessing is done electronically and requires no pencils or paper. ESGI software tracks all of the important and necessary data, as well as provides graphs of every kind for you and your administration to analyze till your hearts content!
Have I convinced you to try ESGI yet? How about a FREE 60 day trial to try these awesome assessments?! And if you decide to purchase a year long license, you can use this same code to receive a $40 savings!! Use the code CHAOS for your free trial and $40 savings, which will then give you easy and accurate kindergarten assessments that you save you time, effort and paper! Click HERE to find out more about ESGI or to sign up for your free trial today!
Now what? After the Assessments
So now that you have those ESGI assessments done and you have printed out all of your parent letters and flashcards…now what? Yes, factually you have done your job and you hope that parents read the data, cut out the flashcards and start working with their student. But what I have found is that parents WANT to help, but don’t know exactly HOW to help. This realization is what inspired me to make a Learning Tool Box for Parents & Students! No, I can’t teach each family how to teach, but I can give them a few ideas and games for them to use at home with the flashcards. These ideas and games will help to support the teaching I am doing in the classroom. It’s a win, win!!
Here are the details to get started on a learning tool box for each of your students!
- Print out each student’s parent letter and accompanying flashcards.
- Highlight the skills that students need to practice for mastery.
- Print out the desired ‘tools’ from the Learning Tool Box
- Tools include: Toolbox labels; parent letter with ideas & game suggestions; printable game board
- Place everything into a gallon-sized Ziploc bag and affix the tool box label. (tip: some teachers have students cut apart their own individual flash cards, before sending them home.)
My hope is that this Learning Tool Box, combined with the ESGI flashcards, will give parents the assistance they need to help their student master the necessary skills, whether it is in literacy or math. Let’s make learning and practicing at home purposeful AND fun!! Want your OWN Learning Tool Box to go along with your ESGI assessments, click HERE or the graphic below to access your FREE copy!!!
What are your thoughts on this Learning Tool Box? Should I add anything?