Have you heard of assessment walls? Does your school use them? This is a shot of our phonemic awareness assessment wall. It is in my room, which is centrally located to the kindergarten and first grade classrooms. Assessment walls are great visuals for conversations between teachers on what skills need covering. Our goal: blank wall!
This is what my wall looked like before the cards went on. I just equally divided the space up with ribbon. The ribbon was so easy to work with- let it hang down, straighten and staple.
I give our kindergartners phonemic awareness assessments at the beginning of the school year. Then students who do not show mastery of the different phonemic awareness skills will go up on the wall.
I numbered all the kindergartners in each class, giving each class a section of numbers in case new students move in. For example Mrs. A. gets numbers 1-29, Mrs. B. gets numbers 30- 59, etc…. Then each student will have cards that are corresponding to their particular number. You will need to have a key to the students and their numbers nearby for when teachers come in to check the wall so they can see what child the numbers represent.
As you can hopefully see in the above picture, student with the #2 needs instruction in syllables, blending phonemes, and segmenting into phonemes. Some students only have a few skills that need working on and some have all 9 areas to improve upon. We had only a handful of students come in needing help with identifying if words rhyme or not. But syllables tripped up many students. So that lets us know that we should have some conversations with the preschool teacher, Head Start teachers, and Parents as Teachers coordinator to try to get more help in that area for students as they enter kindergarten.
Keeping an assessment wall will help you keep track of who needs extra help and specifically on what skills. We use this wall as one of the pieces of the data that qualifies students for RtI. When students master skills, their card is removed from the wall. Besides assessing during RtI, I assess at the beginning, middle and end of the year. I keep all this data organized in a data binder.
We got our ideas for our assessment wall from Karen Loman’s book, Targeted Reading Interventions. It is a great book and has helped us to get better at helping our students and tracking their successes. Her book also details how to do a reading assessment wall which our school will also be doing. But that will be another post another time!