Parent FAQ’s for 3^{rd} Grade

What is the SRI?

Scholastic Reading Inventory (SRI) is a reading comprehension test for grades 1-12 that assesses students' reading levels and helps teachers adjust instruction according to students' needs, track students' reading growth over time, and match readers to text. The SRI is an adaptive assessment, meaning that as students miss a question the test adjusts to the appropriate reading level.

What is a lexile?

The Lexile Framework is a reading measure that matches students to text. The Lexile Framework places both reader and text on the same scale. SRI assigns a Lexile number to test results and provides a list of books that match the student's interests and reading level.

What is F & P (Fountas & Pinnell)?

The Fountas & Pinnell reading assessment determines the independent, instructional, and frustration level for readers. Students read a passage out loud to the teacher. The teacher notes any errors or miscues that students have as they read. For example, omitting a word, dropping the ending of a word, or not being able to decode the word are all errors that would be marked. The student reads the end portion of the passage to themselves. After the student has read the passage, the teacher asks questions to determine the level of comprehension. Students are asked to recall what they have read. Once the rate of accuracy and the comprehension level are found an alphabetic letter is assigned as a reading level.

How can I find out if the books I buy or check out are on level?

There are a few websites that can help you determine the level of a book. www.lexile.com will tell you the lexile of the book. (The lexile is determined by the SRI.)

www.scholastic.com has the lexile level and also an alphabetic level for Guided Reading. If you click on the Teacher tab at the top and then select “Book Wizard” you can enter information about a book and a lexile and guided reading level will come up. You can also get a short overview of the book.

How many minutes should my child read each night?

Students should be reading for a minimum of 25 minutes each evening independently.

Parent FAQ’s about Math

What is Math in Focus?

Math in Focus is the math curriculum adopted by grades K-5. Math in Focus is a curriculum fully aligned to the learning objectives of the state of Missouri. It is a research based program for providing students with the chance to develop number sense and mathematical reasoning. Students learn and discover many methods for solving problems and are able to explain their thinking.

What is Singapore math?

Singapore math uses a three-step learning model, which consistently introduces concepts in a progression. It moves from the concrete to visual representation and then on to the more abstract (questioning and solving written equations). Students are taught not only to know how to do something, but also why it works. Here is a great link for how it works and the research: http://www.pbs.org/parents/education/math/math-tips-for-parents/whats-singapore-math/

What can I do to help my child with math at home?

There are many ways to help your child with math at home. Listed below are 10 simple things that you can do to help support your child’s math fluency and mathematical thinking using real world situations.

- Ask your child what time it is. What time will it be in an hour? How much longer until bedtime?
- Count change. How much is this? How much more to make $1.00? To make $5.00?
- Play the estimation game. Estimate how much the grocery bill will be by rounding to the nearest $1.00.
- Let your child help you cook. Measuring cups are very good ways to reinforce fractions.
- Let your child help you measure things. Exposure to rulers and tape measures helps when learning about inches, yards, and feet.
- Talk about the size of things. When you buy a gallon of milk, explain that it is a gallon. Comparing pints/quarts/half gallons/gallons at the grocery store is a great visual representation.
- Point out fractional parts and reasons to divide things. If you have to split something into smaller portions or divide things (food is a great example) then talk about the fraction or division problem it represents.
- Ask your child to read numbers to you. It may sound simple, but many children struggle with how to read a number out loud.
- Read graphs and charts together and discuss their meaning.
- Point out and discuss 3D shapes.

FAQ’s about Assessments

Why does my child have to take so many assessments?

There are many types of assessments. Some assessments are used by the teacher to make decisions about instruction. Some assessments are used to measure a student’s mastery over grade level content. The state of Missouri requires that 3^{rd} grade students take an assessment in both math and reading.

What are Benchmark assessments?

Benchmark assessments are given 5 times per year. Benchmark assessments are much like checkpoints. We use Benchmark assessments to measure your child’s growth towards year end goals. Teachers use data from these assessments to help them identify objectives that students need additional practice to master. The Benchmark assessments are also very good practice for taking assessments on the computer, which is the state format for testing.

What assessment is given for mastery of math facts?

Students work toward completing 100 problems in 5 minutes. Students will take these assessments several times a year. They will have multiple opportunities to take this assessment. Students are expected to show mastery of addition, subtraction, and multiplication facts by the end of the year.

What is a spelling inventory?

A spelling inventory is a spelling tests that contains words broken down into word features and rules. The words start out very easy (i.e. bed) and become progressively more complex (civilization). We use this assessment to make sure students are getting the instruction at their level.

Why does my child have a different teacher for reading and spelling?

Reading and spelling instruction are taught at your child’s instructional level. Guided reading is taught in small groups to students at the same level. This targets the instruction for what your child needs to move to the next reading level. Some students move through the levels quickly, some students may take more time. This approach allows us to really understand your child’s instructional needs.