Wilson Reading System New Thoughts

This year, I'm starting with two groups of Wilson Reading Systems. For ALL of them they have been through more than a year of it and have MANY bad habits. One group, is starting back in Book 1, page 2 for at least the second because they can't read and spell the words fluently. These guys have only two strategies to decode words--tapping and sounding words out. The thing that makes Wilson a great reading system in cutting students off from using those strategies.

So, this year I have cut them off. No more tapping or sounding CVC words out. Yes, that's right no more! But this means I had to give them a new strategy to use. Well, that's been "Chunky Monkey." Those of you familiar with Book 1 page 2--you know it starts with short a and only a handful of letters. That's all you need to rhyme. When I started on Friday with this strategy, they were very shocked that I was taking the security blanket away but by the time we were done Friday they were beginning to believe me--they didn't need it.

Finding the balance between having them tap and sound out when first moving into a new substep and when to cut them off if very hard. These guys couldn't move on to reading more difficult material because they didn't know what else to use. Will, "Chunky Monkey" always be the answer no but as they move through (I hope) the other steps they will learn other strategies to decode words they don't know.

Besides charting and encoding work, how do I know they are "getting it." Simple. All my groups have learning targets and as part of that target is a quick self-assessment. This group uses Robert Marzano's Assessment for Student Learning. Each student has a clothespin and on their way out the door they put their clip where they think it should go.

 I can then go back later and record they responds. Currently, I'm using Easy Assessment. So far, after I have put the groups and kids plus my rubrics in, I can track how they are scoring themselves and share the information with others. Last year, I used Google, I had problems when it came to sharing the information with others and seeing how students progressed throughout lessons and over a month.

This version of Marzano's Assessment for Student Learning, is available here at my TpT Store for purchase. It has both the wall version but also posters.

I hope everyone is off to a great school year. My thoughts and prayers go out to my fellow Coloradans up north. We have blue skies and warming up before winter comes knocking.


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Welcome to my all thing special education blog. I empower busy elementary special education teachers to use best practice strategies to achieve a data and evidence driven classroom community by sharing easy to use, engaging, unique approaches to small group reading and math. Thanks for Hopping By.
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