Alignment to College and Career Ready Standards: Overall Summary

The materials for Grade 7 do not meet the expectations of alignment to standards. The texts and tasks partially meet the demands to support students' development of literacy skills in reading, writing, speaking and listening, and language. Materials partially support students in building their knowledge of topics and themes as well as growing vocabulary. Materials include some support for comprehensive writing and research instruction.
See Rating Scale
Understanding Gateways

Alignment

|

Does Not Meet Expectations

Gateway 1:

Text Quality

0
17
32
36
24
32-36
Meets Expectations
18-31
Partially Meets Expectations
0-17
Does Not Meet Expectations

Gateway 2:

Building Knowledge

0
15
28
32
12
28-32
Meets Expectations
16-27
Partially Meets Expectations
0-15
Does Not Meet Expectations

Usability

|

Not Rated

Not Rated

Gateway 3:

Usability

0
23
30
34
0
30-34
Meets Expectations
24-29
Partially Meets Expectations
0-23
Does Not Meet Expectations

Gateway One

Text Quality & Complexity and Alignment to Standards Components

Partially Meets Expectations

Criterion 1a - 1f

Texts are worthy of students' time and attention: texts are of quality and are rigorous, meeting the text complexity criteria for each grade. Materials support students' advancing toward independent reading.
14/20
+
-
Criterion Rating Details

The texts included in Holt McDougal Literature Grade 7 are of high quality and worthy of careful reading. Texts included encompass a wide range of the types and genre called for in the standards as well as the appropriate levels of complexity for this grade level. However, the texts do not appear to increase in complexity over the course of the year. While the levels of the texts are provided with the materials they are not accompanied by a rationale for purpose and placement. Students do not have the opportunity to engage with full-length novels, despite the inclusion of excerpts from high-quality texts. Independent reading is not required, therefore there are no processes for monitoring of it.

Indicator 1a

Anchor texts are of publishable quality and worthy of especially careful reading and consider a range of student interests.
4/4
+
-
Indicator Rating Details

The instructional materials reviewed for Grade 7 meet the criteria for anchor texts being of publishable quality and worthy of especially careful reading and consider a range of student interests.

The majority of the texts included in the materials are of publishable quality and are worthy of close-reading. There are a wide range of texts that would hold the interests of a variety of students. Both literature and informational selections are high-quality without the need for revisions or supplements. Examples of these texts include, but are not limited to:

  • In Unit 2, students read “A Retrieved Reformation” by O. Henry. This short story about a reformed safecracker would interest many 7th graders.
  • In Unit 5, students read “Jabberwocky” a poem by renowned Victorian author Lewis Carroll.
  • In Unit 6, students read “Sir Gawain and the Green Knight” retold by award winning author Michael Morpurgo will catch the interest of adventure seeking 7th grade students.
  • In Unit 8, students read “What Do You Know About Sharks?” a magazine article by Sharon Guynup. This informational text includes engaging detail around sharks and addresses common misconceptions.

Indicator 1b

Materials reflect the distribution of text types and genres required by the standards at each grade level.
4/4
+
-
Indicator Rating Details

The instructional materials reviewed for Grade 7 meet the criteria for materials reflecting the distribution of text types and genres required by the standards at each grade level. Students read a mix of both informational and literary texts as well as texts from multiple genres. Materials include approximately 50% fiction and 50% nonfiction texts.

Evidence that supports the materials meeting the criteria include, but are not limited to:

  • In Unit 2, students read a variety of text types and genres that include “Dirk the Protector” by Gary Paulsen (memoir) “Abuelito Who” by Sandra Cisneros (poem)
    as well as short stories, a book excerpt, an autobiography, and poems.
  • In Unit 4, students read a variety of text types and genres that include “An Interview with Ray Bradbury” (newspaper article), “Breaking the Ice” by Dave Berry (essay) as well as
    short stories, informative articles, folk tales, novels, essays, poems, and image collections.
  • In Unit 6, students read a variety of text types and genres that include “Echo” by Alice Low (myth), epic poems, medieval legends, a historical novel, book reviews, folk tales, tall tale, and fables.
  • In Unit 8, students read a variety of text types and genres that include “Malaria Forum” by Melinda French Gates (policy speech) as well as magazine articles, web news report/tv clip, brochure/poster, editorials, tv commercials, and speeches.

Indicator 1c

Texts have the appropriate level of complexity for the grade according to quantitative analysis, qualitative analysis, and relationship to their associated student task.
2/4
+
-
Indicator Rating Details

The instructional materials reviewed for Grade 7 partially meet the criteria for texts having the appropriate level of complexity for the grade according to quantitative analysis, qualitative analysis, and relationship to their associated student task.

Some texts have quantitative scores that fall below the correct range, and the qualitative portion is insufficient to raise the overall grade-level alignment. Many texts have quantitative scores that fall below the correct range, and the qualitative portion is insufficient to raise the overall grade level alignment. Many texts are excerpts from pieces of literature that are only a few pages long, and determining a specific Lexile level could be a challenge.

Texts the correct grade level are included, but are not used consistently or do not have appropriate associated tasks. Evidence of this includes, but is not limited to:

  • In Unit, 1 students read “Casey at the Bat”, an exemplar text for students in Grades 4-5. Students are asked to identify elements of fiction when reading. The reader and task demands do not increase the complexity for this text.
  • In Unit 5, students read the poem “Fireflies” by Paul Fleischman. This is an exemplar read-aloud poem for students in Grades 2-3. The materials pair this poem with “Fireflies in the Garden” by Robert Frost. Students then read the scientific article, “Stars with Wings”. The structure of the poems increase their complexity. “Fireflies” is meant to be read as a duet. The science article does include subheadings and scientific vocabulary that helps to increase complexity. The task associated with these texts are to determine which poem uses more accurate information and write a paragraph citing evidence from the texts.
  • In Unit 8, students read “The Promise”, a nonfiction article by Jane Goodall, and discuss the author’s outlook on the future of the world. In the text, Goodall claims that despite all of the immense problems facing the Earth, that humans still have reason to maintain hope for a brighter future. She lays out her argument with clarity and in a structured and easy to follow methodology. A secondary graphic is provided which helps readers to understand her argument, though the graphic is not originally connected to the article itself. The language is mostly explicit, with some cases of multiple meaning words that may confuse readers. The text has some Tier 2 words, but no Tier 3 words. She uses elements of persuasion in her writing, including through the intentional selection of words with connotative meaning. She makes her argument clearly, but her purpose is somewhat implied. Most students in Grade 7 would have a decent awareness of challenges facing the global community, and the science community's concern about the effects of climate change. Overall, this text is slightly complex and does not meet the demands of Grade 7. This text would be more appropriate in a Grade 6 curriculum.

Examples of texts that are at the appropriate level of complexity are as follows:

  • In Unit 5, students read “Jabberwocky”. This is an exemplar text for Grades 6-8.
  • In Unit 7, students read “Eleanor Roosevelt”, Lexile level 990. Students then read “LEtter to the President General of the Daughters of the American Revolution” by Eleanor Roosevelt, Lexile level of 1260, and a passage from “The Autobiography of Eleanor Roosevelt”, Lexile level of 1050. Students use these texts to state and support a conclusion about Eleanor Roosevelt.

Indicator 1d

Materials support students' increasing literacy skills over the course of the school year. (Series of texts should be at a variety of complexity levels appropriate for the grade band.)
2/4
+
-
Indicator Rating Details

The instructional materials reviewed for Grade 7 partially meet the criteria for materials supporting students’ increasing literacy skills over the course of the school year. Series of texts should be at a variety of complexity levels appropriate for the grade band.

There are a great variety of complexities throughout the materials, however, there is not a discernable increase in complexity over the course of the year. In addition, tasks are of similar rigor and demand at the beginning and end of the year. For example, in Unit 1 Lexile levels range from 730-1180, in Unit 3 Lexile levels range from 510-1200, and in Unit 8 Lexile levels range from 950-1380. Also, in Unit 1 students read “Casey at the Bat”, an exemplar text for Grades 4-5. Students are asked to identify elements of fiction when reading. The reader and task demands do not increase the text complexity for this text. Also, in Unit 5 students read the poem “Fireflies” by Paul Fleischman. This is an exemplar read-aloud poem for grades 2-3. The materials do pair this poem with “Fireflies in the Garden” by Robert Frost and students then read the science article “Stars with Wings”. However, the structure of the poems do not increase complexity. “Fireflies” is meant to be read as a duet. The science article does include subheadings and scientific vocabulary that helps to increase complexity. The task associated with these texts are to determine which poem uses more accurate information and write a paragraph citing evidence from the texts.

In addition, tasks are of similar rigor and demand at the beginning compared to the end of the year. For example, Each Unit has a “Practice and Apply” section at the end of the stories. Within each “Practice and Apply” section students answer comprehension questions, complete a text analysis, and have an opportunities for Extension and Challenge. The “Practice and Apply” section does not build or become more rigorous from the prior units “Practice and Apply” Section. Students do not show that they can independently master skills by the end of the year. Most analysis questions make note exactly where to go to get the needed information. Students rarely have to practice close reading to dig deeper into texts. The scaffolds and student notes provided in the margins remain the same from Unit 1 until the end of the year.

Indicator 1e

Anchor texts and series of texts connected to them are accompanied by a text complexity analysis and rationale for purpose and placement in the grade level.
1/2
+
-
Indicator Rating Details

The instructional materials reviewed for Grade 7 partially meet the criteria that anchor texts and series of texts connected to them are accompanied by a text complexity analysis and rationale for purpose and placement in the grade level.

The publisher does not provide a text complexity analysis or rationale for purpose and placement in the grade level. At the beginning of every unit, texts are listed with their Lexile, Fry, and Dale-Chall level. There are no qualitative measurements, nor are any reader and task considerations included to create a complete text analysis. There is also no rationale included for the purpose or placement in each grade level. Examples include:

Unit 1:

  • “Seventh Grade” by Gary Soto Difficulty Level: Easy Readability: Lexile 730, Fry 7, Dale-Chall 6.5
  • “The Last Dog” by Katherine Paterson Difficulty Level: Challenging Readability: Lexile 830, Fry 4, Dale-Chall 6.9

Unit 4

  • “Dark They Were, and Golden-Eyed” by Ray Bradbury Difficulty Level: Average Readability: Lexile 540, Fry 7, Dale-Chall 5.4
  • “A Day’s Wait” by Ernest Hemingway Difficulty Level: Average Readability: Lexile 900, Fry 3, Dale-Chall 5.3

Unit 7:

  • “Eleanor Roosevelt” by William Jay Jacobs Difficulty Level: Challenging Readability: Lexile 990, Fry 10, Dale-Chall 6.7
  • “A First Lady Speaks Out: Letter to the Daughters of the American Revolution” by Eleanor Roosevelt Difficulty Level: Average Readability: Lexile 1260, Fry 11, Dale-Chall 6.7

Indicator 1f

Anchor text(s), including support materials, provide opportunities for students to engage in a range and volume of reading to achieve grade level reading.
1/2
+
-
Indicator Rating Details

The instructional materials reviewed for Grade 7 partially meet the criteria that anchor and supporting texts provide opportunities for students to engage in a broad range of text types and disciplines as well as a volume of reading to achieve grade level reading proficiency.

Students are exposed to a wide range of text types within each unit and throughout the curriculum, although no clear anchor texts are designated by the Teacher Edition. For example, units have a broad range of text types including, but not limited to, memoirs, excerpts, poems, speeches, editorials, scripts, folk literature, short stories, news articles, and nonfiction texts. Each unit has a large number of text for students to read. Unit 1 contains 10 texts, Unit 2 contains 8 texts, Unit 3 contains 8 texts, Unit 4 contains 8 texts, Unit 5 contains 8 texts, Unit 6 contains 10 texts, Unit 7 contains 9 texts, Unit 8 contains 8 texts, Unit 9 is designated as a research unit, but lacks focus/anchor texts.

There are no opportunities for students to engage with full-length novels, but many high quality novel excerpts are included. For example, In Unit 3, students are introduced to The Giver, but they only read a five-page excerpt of the book. At the end of the excerpt, the textbooks states “To learn more about this strange community, read more of The Giver.” It is suggested that students could finish the novel, but it is not expected and teachers would have to buy supplemental materials for students to read the rest of the novel. Also, in Unit 6, students are introduced to Crispin: The Cross Lead, but students only read a five-page excerpt. At the end of the excerpt, there is a suggestion the students finish the book, but there are no materials provided for the teacher or student to finish reading the novel.

Independent reading is suggested but not required, and there are no included mechanisms or processes for teachers or students to monitor progress of independent reading .For example, at the end of each unit students are given “Ideas for Independent Reading”. Typically, nine books are listed under three different questions based on the unit. For example, Unit 2 includes the titles of three novels under each of the following questions: What is the power to heal? What stands in the way of your dreams? and Who deserves a second chance? The directions to the teacher include, “Encourage students to choose one or more of these ‘great reads’ to read independently.” Also, in the introductory materials, students are told “The best way to become a better readers is to read as much as you can, whenever you can. Follow your interests in new and exciting things to read.” While it is suggested that students read independently, there is no mechanism for teachers or students to monitor reading progress.

Criterion 1g - 1n

Materials provide opportunities for rich and rigorous evidence-based discussions and writing about texts to build strong literacy skills.
10/16
+
-
Criterion Rating Details

Materials include high-quality, text-dependent questions, tasks, and assignments that encourage students to interact with the texts and to return to them to support their statements with evidence. However, most culminating tasks within the materials are not connected to these questions and tasks.

Some opportunities for evidence-based discussions occur, but these instances are not well-supported nor are they connected directly to the texts students are reading. There are not adequate opportunities provided for students to master the speaking and listening standards.

Ample opportunities exist for both on-demand and process writing, though not all writing genres specified by the standards are adequately taught or practiced prior to students being asked to apply them. Students have minimal opportunities to make claims developed from their close reading experiences.

Some grammar instruction is included, and all standards are covered, however, the coverage is inconsistent and inadequate. Several of the standards are only addressed once in the duration of the year. Some opportunities for application in and out of context are present, but many skills are taught in isolation.

Indicator 1g

Most questions, tasks, and assignments are text-dependent, requiring students to engage with the text directly (drawing on textual evidence to support both what is explicit as well as valid inferences from the text).
2/2
+
-
Indicator Rating Details

The instructional materials reviewed for Grade 7 meet the criteria that most questions, tasks, and assignments are text-dependent/specific, requiring students to engage with the text directly (drawing on textual evidence to support both what is explicit as well as valid inferences from the text).

In most lessons, students are asked various discussion questions that require them to engage with the text. Stories include a set of after-reading questions that are text-dependent and specific. Various tasks and writing assignments also ask the students to engage with the text. Examples of text-dependent questions, tasks and assignments related to this indicator include, but are not limited to:

  • In Unit 1, The School Play, students are asked tiered discussion prompts that focus on plot to help them connect, infer, and analyze the text. Students are asked, “Would you rather be in the audience or on the stage? How do you think Robert would answer this question right now? How are the boys in snowshoes helping the audience understand the setting of the play? Why do some students in the audience look in the direction of the piano (lines 153-154)? What is humorous about this scene?”
  • In Unit 4, one questions is as follows: “In line 73, there is an example of dialect, a form of language spoken in a certain place or by a certain group of people. Why might Hamilton use dialect in this story? The question gives students the location of the evidence, and names the literary device for them, providing a model of how to respond.
  • In Unit 6, Beowulf, students are asked to analyze characteristics of heroic behavior. The teacher reads aloud lines 16-26 and points out examples of text evidence that support the claim that Beowulf is heroic. Next, students are asked, “to suggest further examples”. Students must use evidence from the text to support the claim.

Indicator 1h

Sets of high-quality sequences of text-dependent questions and tasks build to a culminating task that integrates skills (may be writing, speaking, or a combination).
1/2
+
-
Indicator Rating Details

The instructional materials reviewed for Grade 7 partially meet the criteria for having sets of high-quality sequences of text-dependent/specific questions and tasks that build to a culminating task that integrates skills (may be writing, speaking, or a combination).

At the end of each text or text set, students answer comprehension and text analysis questions. Students are also offered extension and challenge tasks or writing prompts. Questions and tasks throughout the texts do not always build to the end of text culminating questions and tasks. At the end of each unit students complete Writing Workshop, a Speaking and Listening Workshop and occasionally a Technology Workshop. However, unit questions and tasks often do not build to these tasks. Texts and skills are often referenced in these tasks, but most can be completed without the use of unit texts or skills gained within the unit.

  • In Unit 3, students are asked to write a short story and then post in on a class blog. Unit 3 focuses on theme, and most of the discussion and After Reading Questions focus on the themes. While the students are reading short stories, they do not focus on the skills necessary for narrative writing.
  • In Unit 6 students are asked to create a “How-To” explanation during their writing workshop and then work on giving and following oral directions during their speaking and listening workshop. The focus of this unit is on myths, legends, and tall tales, and there were no preceding lessons, questions, or tasks that build to this written task.
  • In Unit 7, which focuses on biographies and autobiographies, the speaking and listening tasks requires students to conduct an interview with someone about his or her life and work. There are no questions or tasks that build a student’s skills to conduct this interview.
  • In Unit 8, the writing task loosely correlates with the unit’s focus which is information, argument, and persuasion. The writing prompt states, “ The writers in this unit explored real-life and asserted firm claims, or positions.” Students are then asked to write a persuasive essay that asserts a strong claim on an issue. Questions and tasks during the unit do call out information and practice finding claims and reasons during the reading of texts.

Indicator 1i

Materials provide frequent opportunities and protocols for evidencebased discussions that encourage the modeling and use of academic vocabulary and syntax. (May be small group and all-class.)
1/2
+
-
Indicator Rating Details

The instructional materials reviewed for Grade 7 partially meet the criteria for materials providing frequent opportunities and protocols for evidence-based discussions (small groups, peer-to-peer, whole class) that encourage the modeling and use of academic vocabulary and syntax.

Throughout the materials, there are some opportunities for discussion, but not enough for students to adequately master the speaking and listening standards. There is some explanation of related standards that accompany suggested opportunities for discussion, however, clear and specific protocols are absent (these can be found in the Speaking and Listening Workshops at the end of each unit). Most discussion prompts do not specify if they are to be done in small groups, peer-to-peer, or in whole class. While academic vocabulary is included in the materials, its usage is not modeled and students are not given ample opportunities for practice. Some examples of these discussion prompts include, but are not limited to:

  • In Unit 1, students are asked “What makes you brave?” The teacher edition includes the following: “Discuss the question with students. Encourage students to expand their idea of what it means to be brave. Suggest that they think of standing up to peer pressure or overcoming a personal fear. Then have students do the PRESENT activity.” The PRESENT activity asks students to draw a picture of a time they were brave and then add a caption and present to the class. No other guidance is given to the teacher to scaffold this discussion or activity.
  • In Unit 3, students are asked to pick their favorite books or movies and think about the message from that book or movie. Students are then asked to get with a group to discuss their choices. There are no protocols suggested, and the only included guidance for implementation is, “Encourage them to consider several theme ideas for each story and then decide which is strongest or most important.”
  • In Unit 5, students are given academic vocabulary and the teacher edition suggests that they model copying down the vocabulary words and definitions. This is written as follows: “Encourage students to use the terms in discussion and writing,” but the teacher is not provided with examples or ways to model using the vocabulary.
  • In Unit 7, the teacher edition includes Tiered Discussion Prompts to help “students understand the author’s conflict” in the store “Names/Nombres”. The tiered discussion prompts give one suggested answer for each prompt, but no other protocol on how discussions should occur. (pg. 809)

Indicator 1j

Materials support students' listening and speaking about what they are reading and researching (including presentation opportunities) with relevant follow-up questions and supports.
1/2
+
-
Indicator Rating Details

The instructional materials reviewed for Grade 7 partially meet the criteria for materials supporting students’ listening and speaking about what they are reading and researching (including presentation opportunities) with relevant follow-up questions and supports.

Most units include a speaking and listening task at the end of the unit (called the Speaking and Listening Workshop). However, these tasks do not provide clear instructions for the teacher and lack rubrics for assessing student learning. Speaking and Listening skills are not addressed within unit texts or during unit lessons. The speaking and listening tasks often do not relate to what the student is reading in the unit and many do not require any additional research, and therefore do not sufficiently address the related standards. Many of the tasks can be completed without citing evidence. In addition, the tasks do not increase in rigor over the course of the year. Examples of opportunities that partially meet the criteria of this indicator include, but are not limited to:

  • At the end of Unit 1 students are asked to turn a piece of persuasive writing into a podcast. The task tells the students that, “A successful podcast presents a focused, coherent argument” and “used amedicat to clarify and emphasize reasons and evidence” but there is not a detailed rubric or a clear example for the students.
  • At the end of Unit 6 students are asked to create “how-to” text. Students are then asked to “Adapt your ‘how-to’ explanation as a set of oral instructions that teach your classmates to perform a useful task or process. Practice your presentation and then give it to the class.” This task can be completed with little or no research and does not require evidence from any of the text in the unit.
  • In Unit 4, students are asked to adapt their literary analysis essay into an oral literary critique. They are given several anchor charts that outline traits of a strong oral critique, such as “uses formal English to deliver the message.” Guidance is also given about how speakers use their voice to create effects, including using enunciation and inflection. These terms are defined for students and they are encouraged to practice these qualities while reading their speeches to a partner. Struggling students are encouraged to create notecards for their speech that include color coding and symbol coding to help them stay organized.
  • In Unit 6, students are asked to adapt their “how-to” explanation into a set of oral instructions that teach their classmates to perform a task or a process. They are given guidance about how to give and to follow oral directions. English Language Learners are given some sentence stems that help them to clarify the steps in their process.

Indicator 1k

Materials include a mix of on-demand and process writing (e.g. multiple drafts, revisions over time) and short, focused projects, incorporating digital resources where appropriate.
2/2
+
-
Indicator Rating Details

The instructional materials reviewed for Grade 7 meet the criteria for materials including a mix of on-demand and process writing (e.g., multiple drafts, revisions over time) and short, focused projects, incorporating digital resources where appropriate.

Throughout the materials there are plenty of opportunities for writing. There are both on-demand and process writing throughout the materials. Students are given opportunities to go through the entire writing process, including revising at least once during each unit. On demand writing prompts occur at least once after each story, and sometimes with greater frequency. Although not used for every writing assignment, technology is incorporated when necessary or when it would enhance the writing. Examples of the mix of on-demand and process writing that incorporate digital resources where appropriate include, but are not limited to,

  • In Unit 2, students read “A Retrieved Reformation”. An on demand writing prompt states: “Jimmy Valentine and Ben Price both make surprising decisions at the end of ‘A Retrieved Reformation.’ Using details and examples from the text, writing one paragraph in which you compare the two characters.” Students are also given a revising tip.
  • The Writing Workshop in Unit 3 asks students to write a short story. Students are expected to go through the following processes: planning/prewriting, drafting, revising, editing, and publishing.
  • In Unit 3, students are asked to develop a one-page dialogue between two characters.
  • During the Writing Workshop in Unit 5 students are asked to write an online feature article where they analyze a poem. Students are told to “Use web links to give your audience a better understanding of the work.”
  • In Unit 6, students write a short constructed response where they explain a character’s motivation.
  • In Unit 7, students read “Eleanor Roosevelt”. Students are then given the following writing prompt: “In a paragraph, link Eleanor Roosevelt’s childhood traits to those she displayed as an adult. Try to use one or more of the Academic Vocabulary words in your paragraph.”
  • In Unit 8, the Information, Argument, and Persuasion, Writing Workshop located on page 988, has a focus on writing a persuasive essay. The writing tasks state, “ Write a persuasive essay that asserts a strong claim on an issue. Support your claim with reasons and evidence that will convince your audience to act or think a certain way”.
  • In Unit 9, students complete a research paper in which they show what they have learned about a topic and present their own ideas. Students use the steps of the writing process.

Indicator 1l

Materials provide opportunities for students to address different text types of writing that reflect the distribution required by the standards.
1/2
+
-
Indicator Rating Details

The instructional materials reviewed for Grade 7 partially meet the criteria for materials providing opportunities for students to address different text types of writing that reflect the distribution required by the standards.

Students address multiple types of texts types of writing throughout the school year. Student prompts include argument writing, narrative writing, and expository writing. Examples of student opportunities to address different text types include, but are not limited to:

  • At the end of Unit 1, students respond to the prompt: “Pick a story that’s memorable to you. Which element is most responsible for making the story so unforgettable? Write an argument that persuades readers to agree with your viewpoint.” Students are reminded to formulate a claim, identify support, and consider opposing claims when writing this argumentative piece. However, students are not given many opportunities to practice these skills before the Writing Workshop at the end of the unit. This prompt is also the same prompt used in Unit 1 for the 6th grade materials.
  • At the end of Unit 4, students respond to the prompt: “Write a literary analysis in which you examine one or two elements of a literary text, such as plot, character, or theme. Develop an original interpretation of the text, using evidence that is supported consistently.” Students are reminded to develop a controlling idea and to identify their key points for this informative/explanatory text.
  • At the end of Unit 7, students respond to the prompt: “Write a personal narrative that describes a special event in your life. Include relevant descriptive details and well-structured event sequences to help your audience understand what the event was like. Be sure to explain why the event was important to you.” Students are reminded to use “dialogue and description to develop the events” for this narrative writing piece.

While the materials provide many different writing opportunities throughout the school year, there are not ample opportunities for the student to learn the different genres of writing before they are expected to apply them. While rubrics are provided for the teacher and student to assess some learning, they are not detailed and do not provide adequate support for the teacher and students. Rubrics are provided for Writing Workshop, which include process writing and timed writing. These cover development, organization and language on a 1-6 scale. These rubrics are very general. Multiple or repeated opportunities to practice different modes of writing are limited. Few student samples and exemplars are included. Examples of how the materials reviewed partially meet the criteria of this indicator include, but are not limited to:

  • In Unit 1, students read “The Unnatural Course of Time”. Students are then asked to write about the following prompt: “In the review you just read, Daniel Briney describes the clock-tower scene as ‘a superbly realized, adrenaline-fueled climax’ (line 52-53). Do you agree with his opinion of this scene? In a paragraph, compare and contrast your opinion of this scene with Briney’s.” Students are given steps to help them on this writing prompt, but there is no rubric or assessment tool for the student or teacher to use regarding this prompt.
  • In Unit 2, students read “Zebra”. Students write about the following prompt: “Write a two- or three-paragraph letter that Zebra might send in response to John Wilson’s letter. It should include a description of how the art class and their friendship helped heal his hand and spirit.” There is no rubric or specific directions provided for the teacher to support the students with this task.
  • The teacher edition for Unit 6: Myths, Legends, and Tales provides students with a several partial examples of how to revise. However, the rubric for the “How To” writing lacks specific information for students.

Indicator 1m

Materials include frequent opportunities for evidence-based writing to support careful analyses, well-defended claims, and clear information.
1/2
+
-
Indicator Rating Details

The instructional materials reviewed for Grade 7 partially meet the criteria for materials including frequent opportunities for evidence-based writing to support careful analyses, well-defended claims, and clear information appropriate for the grade level.The units provide some writing opportunities that are embedded in the daily unit lessons, however students have minimal opportunities to make claims developed from their close reading experiences.

Examples of evidence-based writing include, but are not limited to:

  • In Unit 2, students read “Zebra” and write a two or three paragraph letter that Zebra might send in response to John Wilson’s letter. It should include a description of how the art class and their friendship helped heal his hand spirits. On p. 223, students write a one-paragraph evaluation of a classmate’s summary of the letter.
  • In Unit 4, and on demand writing prompt states “Bradbury originally named ‘Dark They Were, and Golden-Eyed’ ‘The Naming of Names.’” Which title do you think is most appropriate? Using details and examples from the story, write a one-paragraph letter to the author to explain your choice.”
  • In Unit 4, students are asked to create a set of instructions for writers. They use the article to find ways to approach writing like Ernest Hemingway did, arrange their instructions in a logical order and illustrate their thinking using evidence.
  • In Unit 7, students read for information and then evaluate multiple texts for their usefulness. Students must cite evidence to support their thinking.

Examples where student writing does not require evidence from a text includes:

  • In Unit 1: Plot and Conflict and Setting, an embedded writing practice is located in the Teacher’s manual on page 45. Students are assigned a “reading-writing” connection prompt. The prompt states, “”What would Victor write in a journal about his first day of seventh grade?”. This writing prompt does not allow for an increased opportunity to practice the skill of understanding plot, conflict and setting” that was the focus throughout the unit.
  • In Unit 4, and on demand writing prompt states ‘Bradbury originally named ‘Dark They Were, and Golden-Eyed’ ‘The Naming of Names.’ Which title do you think is most appropriate? Using details and examples from the story, write a one-paragraph letter to the author to explain your choice.” While this says to use details and examples, it does not require close reading from the student.
  • In Unit 6, students read “Sir Gawain and the Green Knight”. Students are asked to respond to the following writing prompt: “Why do you think Gawain accepted the Green Knight’s challenge? Write a one-paragraph explanation of his motivation.” This question does not show any increase in rigor and allow for students to prove their claims with evidence.
  • In Unit 7 students read “The War Diary of Clara Barton”. Students then respond to the writing prompt “If Clara Barton were alive today, which national or world issues might concern her? In one paragraph, describe one or two current problems Barton might work to change.” While this prompt is related to the text, it does not require text evidence and does not show an increase in rigor from the beginning of the year.

Indicator 1n

Materials include explicit instruction of the grammar and conventions standards for grade level as applied in increasingly sophisticated contexts, with opportunities for application both in and out of context.
1/2
+
-
Indicator Rating Details

The instructional materials reviewed for Grade 7 partially meet the criteria for materials including explicit instruction of the grammar and conventions standards for grade level as applied in increasingly sophisticated contexts, with opportunities for application both in and out of context. While grammar is included, and all standards are covered, the coverage is inconsistent and inadequate. Several of the standards are only addressed once in the duration of the year, requiring supplemental lessons from the teacher in order to lead students to mastery. There are some opportunities for application in and out of context, many skills are taught in isolation. Evidence of this includes, but is not limited to:

  • In Unit 2, Zebra, students have access to standards L.7.1, L.7.4, L.7.4a, and L.7.5. Students discuss the importance of consistent verb tenses within context as well as point out similes as context clues, Students choose the correct verb tense to complete sentences.
  • In Unit 5, after reading a series of poems: the earth is a living thing, Sleeping in the Forest, and Gold, students focus on standards L.7.1 and L.7.2 to identify sentence type and punctuate correctly.
  • In Unit 7, Names/Nombres, students practice standards L.7.2, L.7.4, and L.7.5c. Students are provided with synonyms that have the opposite connotations to help with connotations and meaning. Students review common and proper nouns.
  • Students only address standards L.7.1.C twice throughout the course of the year. I nUnit 1 students are introduced to misplaced modifiers and dangling modifiers in “Grammar in Context: Misplaced and Dangling Modifiers”. The teachers had three sentences for students to revise and then the student is told to “make sure your modifiers are properly placed” in their essay. In Unit 4, students rewrite five sentences with dangling particles. Teachers would need to supplement the materials to make sure they adequately address this standard.
  • In Unit 5, students are addressed to coordinate conjunctions (standards L.7.2.A). Students complete “Grammar in Context: Commas and Coordinate Adjectives” where they are given the definition, examples and then told to check their writing to “make sure to separate coordinate adjectives with commas.” The teacher is given some additional instructions for “Struggling Writers” but this standard does not come up again in the materials. Teachers would need to supplement the materials to better address this standard.
  • Throughout Unit 7 students work on the following grammar and convention skills throughout the entire unit:
    • Correct capitalization
    • Conjunctive adverbs
    • Adjectives
    • Proper nouns

These skills do not build on each other and are not consistent throughout the unit.

Gateway Two

Building Knowledge with Texts, Vocabulary, and Tasks

Does Not Meet Expectations

+
-
Gateway Two Details

Units are organized around literacy skills, rather than a thematic or topical focus. The materials contain quality, text-dependent questions, but lack performance tasks built upon knowledge obtained from the texts and supported by the questions throughout the unit.

While the high-quality texts provide a solid context for both vocabulary instruction and text-dependent writing opportunities, those opportunities are missed. Instruction of and practice with research skills are limited and provide infrequent opportunities for the students to meet the standards in this area. Independent reading is encouraged, but there is no consistent monitoring for the volume and consistency of independent reading that will help students to grow as independent readers over the course of the year.

Criterion 2a - 2h

12/32

Indicator 2a

Texts are organized around a topic/topics (or, for grades 6-8, topics and/or themes) to build students' ability to read and comprehend complex texts independently and proficiently.
0/4
+
-
Indicator Rating Details

The instructional materials reviewed for Grade 7 do not meet the criteria for texts being organized around a topic and/or themes to build students’ ability to read and comprehend complex texts independently and proficiently.

The materials are divided into 9 units. These units are based around literacy skills, not a topic or theme. The teacher’s manual provides an Essential Course of Study on page T21. In this guide teachers can see the specific literacy skills that are explored within the unit using several different text types. Units focus are specific literacy skill address in the section called “Text Analysis Workshop”. Since units are focused on skills and not a theme or topic, many of the texts in a unit do not relate to each other with a common theme or topic and students do not build knowledge to help them better read complex texts.

Examples include but are not limited to:

  • In Unit 1 the literacy skills are Plot, Conflict, Setting. Students read short stories, a memoir, a narrative poem, and a teleplay to learn about plot development, setting, sequence in plot and cause and affect.
  • In Unit 5 the literary skill is appreciating poetry. Students read multiple poems to learn about form, figurative language, imagery, sound devices, and making inferences.
  • In Unit 8 the literary skills center around information, argument, and persuasive informational texts. Students study elements of an argument, factual claims and opinions, main ideas and supporting details while reading multiple informational texts.

Indicator 2b

Materials contain sets of coherently sequenced questions and tasks that require students to analyze the language, key ideas, details, craft, and structure of individual texts.
4/4
+
-
Indicator Rating Details

The instructional materials reviewed for Grade 7 meet the criteria that materials contain sets of coherently sequenced higher order thinking questions and tasks that require students to analyze the language (words/phrases), key ideas, details, craft, and structure of individual texts in order to make meaning and build understanding of texts and topics.

The materials offer students opportunities to use evidence pulled directly from the text as well as make inferences while reading in order to help make meaning of the texts provided. The sequenced questions allow for making meaning and building understanding of the texts at hand. The materials include a range of text dependent questions and tasks throughout each unit. Questions and tasks include analysis of language, key ideas, details and craft and structure. Students are asked questions during reading in the margins of the text to address these pieces. Within the After Reading Prompts, there are questions labeled evaluate and analyze which often address analysis of language, key ideas, details and craft and structure. Questions and tasks cover a wide continuum of standards and strategies. Examples include:

  • In Unit 1, after reading “An American Childhood,” student analyze the ending by discussing, “ Reread lines 111-128. Why do you think Dillard ended the pieced this way, rather than just ending at line 101? Explain the information the last section provides and why Dillard included it.”
  • In Unit 2, students read “The Unnatural Course of Time” and analyze a writer’s position. The students discuss, “Judging by his opening paragraph, what do you expect Daniel Briney to discuss in the rest of the review?”
  • In Unit 4, students are asked to respond to reading skill, style and tone, and writer’s point of view questions such as, “Note the setting and the names of the characters in your story map. What is the conflict? In line 73 there is an example of dialect, a form of language spoken in a certain place or by a certain group of people. Why might Hamilton use dialect in this story? Reread lines 1-12. What is the topic of the essay? Reread lines 21-75. What are Barry’s feelings about high school dating? Explain how he conveys his opinion”.
  • In Unit 5, students analyze the structure and language of poetry. During the reading of the poem “Annabel Lee” by Edgar Allen Poe, students are asked questions such as, “Reread this stanza. Identify words and phrases that are repeated. What emphasis does this repetition create?” and “ The last two stanzas are among the longest in the poem. What ideas and emotions does the poet emphasize by ending the poem with long stanzas?”
  • In Unit 7, students read Names/Nombres by Julia Alvarez and are asked questions such as, “ Reread lines 1-8. Consider Alvarez’s choice of words and her thoughts at immigration. Do you think Julia is proud of her last name?” Students also read 23 Days in July by John Wilcockson and discuss, “Consider what Chris Carmichael says about Armstrong. What might be the writer’s purpose in including the quote?”

Indicator 2c

Materials contain a coherently sequenced set of text-dependent questions and tasks that require students to analyze the integration of knowledge and ideas across both individual and multiple texts.
2/4
+
-
Indicator Rating Details

The instructional materials reviewed for Grade 7 partially meet the criteria that materials contain a coherently sequenced set of text-dependent questions and tasks that require students to analyze the integration of knowledge and ideas across both individual and multiple texts. While materials do contain text-dependent questions, questions are focused on literacy skills rather than knowledge building. In addition, there is no clear explanation of how integration of skills or knowledge builds from unit to unit, with limited guidance available for teachers. While questions may support a general understanding of the texts themselves, they do not support building students’ knowledge about the content or topics/themes introduced by the texts.

Evidence includes, but is not limited to:

  • In Unit 1, students read “Rikki-tikki-tavi”. While reading students answer the following question: “Reread line 111-125. Which details of Nagaina’s attack on Rikki-tikki create tension?” In Unit 7 students read “The Noble Experiment” and are asked the following question while reading: “Reread line 96-103. Notice that Robinson uses first-person pronouns such as I and we. To whom does the we refer?” The questions, which are meant for the end of the school year, still tell students exactly where to look for their answers.These questions support an understanding of the text but do not build knowledge beyond the text.
  • In Unit 4, students read “A Day’s Wait” by Ernest Hemingway. Some of the questions they are asked include:
  • Is it brave to suffer in silence?
  • Style:Do the words Hemingway uses to describe the setting convey a positive or negative atmosphere? Explain.
  • How does this painting convey the passage of time?
  • Infer: What do you learn about the narrator’s character from his attitude toward hunting?
  • Connect: Do you sometimes avoid talking about something that frightens you? Why or why not?
  • Why does the boy cry so much?

These questions build students’ comprehension and recall of the text itself, but do not grow students’ understanding of the topics and themes introduced in this piece.

Questions that integrate knowledge from multiple texts are limited to some integration of the skills in the section titled Reading Comprehension check at the end of the each unit.

  • In Unit 6 students read “Two Ways to Count to Ten” and “The Race Between Toad and Donkey”. Students are asked to write about the following prompt: “While the fables “Tw Ways to Count to Ten” and ‘The Race Between Toad and Donkey” communicate the same recurring theme, they express this theme in different ways. In four or five paragraphs, compare and contrast the ways in which the fables convey their message. Cite details from the fables to support your response.”

Indicator 2d

The questions and tasks support students' ability to complete culminating tasks in which they demonstrate their knowledge of a topic (or, for grades 6-8, a theme) through integrated skills (e.g. combination of reading, writing, speaking, listening).
0/4
+
-
Indicator Rating Details

The instructional materials reviewed for Grade 7 do not meet the criteria that the questions and tasks support students’ ability to complete culminating tasks in which they demonstrate their knowledge of a topic (or, for grades 6-8, a theme) through integrated skills (e.g. combination of reading, writing, speaking, listening). While there are tasks related to some objectives, those given at the end of units do not assess students’ learning nor knowledge growth and do not function as culminating tasks. Evidence of this includes, but is not limited to:

Unit 2 focuses on analyzing character and point of view. The unit goals include, but are not limited to,:

  • Analyze how elements of a story interact, including plot, character, and setting
  • Analyze how authors develop point of view, including first person, limited third person, and omniscient
  • Make inferences, draw conclusions, and synthesize
  • Write a comparison-contrast essay
  • Write a summary

At the end of the unit, students are asked to write a comparison-contrast essay. The writing task states “Write a comparison-contrast essay for a specific audience in which you identify the similarities and differences between two literary texts.” This does not address most of the goals for the unit and does not allow the students to demonstrate comprehension of knowledge gained during this unit.

In Unit 6 student focus on Myths, Legends, and Tales. The unit goals include recognizing cause and effect relationships within Myths, define cultural values within Myths, and understanding the cultural values and characteristics Classical and Traditional tales and Legends. However, the end writing is a “How To” writing workshop activity that explains a step by step instructions for how to do anything. In a Speaking and Listening activity students must give a “how to” explanation as a set of oral directions. Neither extended activity includes the multitude of skills developed in the unit.Neither extended activity includes the skills developed in the unit. There is no task that culminates to show the integrated skills and demonstrates knowledge of a topic or theme.

Indicator 2e

Materials include a cohesive, year-long plan for students to interact with and build key academic vocabulary words in and across texts.
2/4
+
-
Indicator Rating Details

The instructional materials reviewed for Grade 7 partially meet the criteria that materials include a cohesive, year-long plan for students to interact with and build key academic vocabulary words in and across texts. Although each unit includes a variety of Tier 2 and Tier 3 vocabulary words, the units and texts do not work in unison or in coherence in order to build the academic vocabulary of students. Even though the texts that are used are of good quality and provide students with a variety of vocabulary to study, there is no coherence between the texts to ensure that students are seeing and engaging with the same words multiple times either in or across texts. There is no year-long guidance for teachers regarding vocabulary development. Evidence of this includes, but is not limited to:

  • Approximately 5 academic vocabulary words are provided at the beginning of each unit. The teacher guide also provides definitions for these words under the Differentiated Instruction heading. The materials direct teachers to use additional materials found in the Resource Manager, including worksheets to help students develop fluency with these terms.
  • According to the teacher guide, www.thinkcentral.com also includes video and PowerNotes, audio support, ThinkAloud models and WordSharp vocabulary tutorials as well as interactive review and remediation.
  • Within each text, key vocabulary words are noted, with definitions for students to reference. Teacher suggestions for working with these words include, “have pairs of students define these words using context clues and a dictionary. Have them pronounce each word out loud several times.
  • Each lesson also includes a Vocabulary In Context exercise. For the text, “The Story of Ceres and Proserpina (Unit 6),” students fill in the blanks with vocabulary words to complete sentences that create vivid setting for the myth. For this story, it is suggested that the teacher pre teach vocabulary before having students complete an accompanying worksheet independently.
  • Throughout the materials, students are regularly encouraged to “Own the Word.” To facilitate this learning, the teacher is given guidance about key aspects of each word, as well as affixes, synonyms, etc.
  • Unit 3, has Academic Vocabulary for English Language Learners, including vocabulary synonyms. Students complete a Venn Diagram (p.321). Vocabulary in Context in which students restate sentences using different words. Grammar in context p.328 and multiple meaning words p.329. Students complete after reading questions that includes sections for vocabulary in context and language.
  • Unit 8: Information, Argument, and Persuasion, at the beginning of the unit the Academic Vocabulary is explained and shared. For example, the text says, “Tell students they will preview the workshop…” In the section titled, “Vocabulary in Context” the teacher’s guides provides activities to increase use of academic vocabulary with in the directions under, “Academic Vocabulary in Writing”.

Indicator 2f

Materials support students' increasing writing skills over the course of the school year, building students' writing ability to demonstrate proficiency at grade level at the end of the school year.
2/4
+
-
Indicator Rating Details

The instructional materials reviewed for Grade 7 partially meet the criteria that materials support students’ increasing writing skills over the course of the school year, building students’ writing ability to demonstrate proficiency at grade level at the end of the school year. While the writing materials are aligned to the Common Core State Standards, they are limited to the Writing Workshop at the end of each unit.The writing workshop consists of a writing task, idea starters, essential information, planning/prewriting with examples, drafting, revising, analyzing a student's draft, editing, and publishing. There are few protocols,and the skills do not increase over the school year. Also, students only practice the writing type once during the school year and the units do not build writing skills before the final writing workshop. There are few tools for teachers and students to track growth, and no detailed structure on modeling and teaching writing. Evidence of this includes, but is not limited to:

  • In Unit 2, students complete a Comparison-Contrast Essay during the Writing Workshop. The writing task states, “Write a comparison-contrast essay for a specific audience in which you identify the similarities and differences between two literary texts.” While there are resources provided to the student and teacher in this section of the text, it is not adequate to cover the whole course of the unit.
  • At the end of Unit 6 students write a “How-To” Explanation during Writing Workshop. Students are given the following writing task, “Write a “how-to” explanation in which you use relevant details and precise language to explain to an audience how to do or make something.” Writing practice throughout the unit includes, but is not limited to,:
    • Students read “Phaethon, Son of Apollo” and respond to the prompt, “Which of the two myths was better at making you see and feel the terrible descent from the sky? Write two or three paragraphs evaluating the description in each myth. Then explain which description was more effective and why.”
    • Students read “Sir Gawain and the Green Knight” and respond to the prompt, “Why do you think Gawain accepted the Green knight’s challenge? Write a one-paragraph explanation of his motivation.”
    • Students read reviews of Crispin: The Cross of Lead and write a summary of each of the reviews. They then respond to the prompt, “Now that you have written a summary of each reviewer’s opinions, you can evaluate your own or a classmate’s summary by comparing it to the original text.”
    • Students read “Two Ways to Count to Ten” and “The Race Between Toad and Donkey” and respond to the prompt, “In four or five paragraphs, compare and contrast the ways in which the fable convey their message. Cite details from the fables to support your response.”
    • While there are opportunities for students to write throughout the unit, they are typically just on demand writing tasks and they do not prepare the students to complete the writing workshop at the end of the unit.
  • At the end of Unit 8 students are given the writing task “Write a persuasive essay that asserts a strong claim on an issue. Support your claim with reasons and evidence that will convince your audience to act or think a certain way.” While the prompt mentions making a claim and backing it up with evidence, the materials should be asking the students to complete argumentative writing instead of persuasive writing.

Indicator 2g

Materials include a progression of focused research projects to encourage students to develop knowledge in a given area by confronting and analyzing different aspects of a topic using multiple texts and source materials.
2/4
+
-
Indicator Rating Details

The instructional materials reviewed for Grade 7 partially meet the criteria that materials include a progression of focused research projects to encourage students to develop knowledge in a given area by confronting and analyzing different aspects of a topic using multiple texts and source materials. Opportunities for research are limited, and focused mainly in the final unit. There is no clear and cohesive progression through the course of the year.

In Unit 9: The Power of Research, students participate in a “Reading Strategies Workshop: Research paper then followed by a Writing Workshop: Research Paper. Student complete one several writing tasks throughout the units prior to the final unit but do not provide the necessary increase in skills to accomplish the last unit Research project. The unit includes, but is not limited to, the following goals:

  • Plan research
  • Develop relevant research questions
  • Use library and media center resources
  • Evaluate information and sources, including nonfiction books, periodicals, and Web sites
  • Collect your own data
  • Write a research report
  • Create a Wiki

While these goals are addressed in the unit, this is the end of the year and gives the students very little opportunity for practice throughout the year.

Most units include at least one quick research task. They are typically included under the title “Extension and Challenge”. They include, but are not limited to,:

  • Unit 3, after reading “Amigo Brothers” students complete the task, “Find out about the early life of a Golden Gloves champion who later became a professional boxer, such as Oscar de la Hoya or Muhammad Ali. How was the person you researched like Felix and Antonio? Present your findings to the class.” Teacher directions state “Student presentations should include information about a particular Golden Gloves champion and compare the person to the characters in the story. They might focus on the person’s background, character or personality, and fighting style.
  • In Unit 4, students read “Dark They Were, and Golden Eyed.” Students are asked to “Find out more about Mars by visiting the library in your school or neighborhood. What do we now know about the planet? What plans are scientists making to study it further? Focus your research on what interests you the most. Report your findings.” There are suggestions for what the teacher needs to look for, but no rubric nor further direction to support students' demonstration of synthesizing information into coherent presentation.

Indicator 2h

Materials provide a design, including accountability, for how students will regularly engage in a volume of independent reading either in or outside of class.
0/4
+
-
Indicator Rating Details

The instructional materials reviewed for Grade 7 do not meet the criteria that materials provide a design, including accountability, for how students will regularly engage in a volume of independent reading either in or outside of class. The curriculum lacks adequate scaffolding to foster independent reading. While reading independently is suggested, there is no included system for accountability, nor protocols or classroom procedures in the teacher edition to support an increase and improve independence. There is no designated time during lessons for reading independently, making it unclear whether this is meant to take place during class.

In the introductory unit, in The Power of Ideas section, students encounter a page that explains independent reading. It states “The best way to become a better reader is to read as much as you can, every chance you get.” The students are then told they can read novels, magazines, newspapers, and websites.

At the end of each unit there is an “Ideas for Independent Reading” page. This page lists three books under three questions related to the unit. Students are told “Continue exploring with these books.” For example, at the end of Unit 4, the following questions with books are listed:

  • Can where you are change who you are?
    • Skellig by David Almond, Dragonwings by Laurence Yep, Shabanu: Daughter of the Wind by Suzanne Staples
  • Is it brave to suffer in silence?
    • Blackwater by Eve Bunting, The Window by Michael Dorris, The Voices of Silence by Bel Mooney
  • What makes us laugh?
    • Bud, Not Buddy by Christopher Curtis, Squashed by Joan Bauer, A long Way From Chicago by Richard Peck

In addition, the teacher’s guide states, “Encourage students to choose one or more of these great reads to read independently. There is no proposed schedule to ensure students are reading independently. Other than suggesting the books, there is not protocol or procedure to influence students to independently read. The materials lack a proposed schedule to ensure students are reading independently.

Gateway Three

Usability

Not Rated

Criterion 3a - 3e

null
0/8

Indicator 3a

Materials are well-designed and take into account effective lesson structure and pacing.
0/2

Indicator 3b

The teacher and student can reasonably complete the content within a regular school year, and the pacing allows for maximum student understanding.
0/2

Indicator 3c

The student resources include ample review and practice resources, clear directions, and explanation, and correct labeling of reference aids (e.g., visuals, maps, etc.).
0/2

Indicator 3d

Materials include publisher-produced alignment documentation of the standards addressed by specific questions, tasks, and assessment items.
0/2

Indicator 3e

The visual design (whether in print or digital) is not distracting or chaotic, but supports students in engaging thoughtfully with the subject.
0/0

Criterion 3f - 3j

Materials support teacher learning and understanding of the Standards.
0/8

Indicator 3f

Materials contain a teacher's edition with ample and useful annotations and suggestions on how to present the content in the student edition and in the ancillary materials. Where applicable, materials include teacher guidance for the use of embedded technology to support and enhance student learning.
0/2

Indicator 3g

Materials contain a teacher's edition that contains full, adult-level explanations and examples of the more advanced literacy concepts so that teachers can improve their own knowledge of the subject, as necessary.
0/2

Indicator 3h

Materials contain a teacher's edition that explains the role of the specific ELA/literacy standards in the context of the overall curriculum.
0/2

Indicator 3i

Materials contain explanations of the instructional approaches of the program and identification of the research-based strategies.
0/2

Indicator 3j

Materials contain strategies for informing all stakeholders, including students, parents, or caregivers about the ELA/literacy program and suggestions for how they can help support student progress and achievement.
0/0

Criterion 3k - 3n

Materials offer teachers resources and tools to collect ongoing data about student progress on the Standards.
0/8

Indicator 3k

Materials regularly and systematically offer assessment opportunities that genuinely measure student progress.
0/2

Indicator 3l

The purpose/use of each assessment is clear:
0/0

Indicator 3l.i

Assessments clearly denote which standards are being emphasized.
0/2

Indicator 3l.ii

Assessments provide sufficient guidance to teachers for interpreting student performance and suggestions for follow-up.
0/2

Indicator 3m

Materials should include routines and guidance that point out opportunities to monitor student progress.
0/2

Indicator 3n

Materials indicate how students are accountable for independent reading based on student choice and interest to build stamina, confidence, and motivation.
0/0

Criterion 3o - 3v

Materials provide teachers with strategies for meeting the needs of a range of learners so that they demonstrate independent ability with grade-level standards.
0/10

Indicator 3o

Materials provide teachers with strategies for meeting the needs of a range of learners so the content is accessible to all learners and supports them in meeting or exceeding the grade-level standards.
0/2

Indicator 3p

Materials regularly provide all students, including those who read, write, speak, or listen below grade level, or in a language other than English, with extensive opportunities to work with grade level text and meet or exceed grade-level standards.
0/4

Indicator 3q

Materials regularly include extensions and/or more advanced opportunities for students who read, write, speak, or listen above grade level.
0/2

Indicator 3r

Materials provide opportunities for teachers to use a variety of grouping strategies.
0/2

Indicator 3s

0/

Indicator 3s3v

0/

Indicator 3t

0/

Indicator 3u

0/

Indicator 3u.i

0/

Indicator 3u.ii

0/

Indicator 3v

0/

Criterion 3s - 3v

Materials support effective use of technology to enhance student learning. Digital materials are accessible and available in multiple platforms.
0/0

Indicator 3s

Digital materials (either included as supplementary to a textbook or as part of a digital curriculum) are web-based, compatible with multiple Internet browsers (e.g., Internet Explorer, Firefox, Google Chrome, etc.), "platform neutral" (i.e., are compatible with multiple operating systems such as Windows and Apple and are not proprietary to any single platform), follow universal programming style, and allow the use of tablets and mobile devices.
0/0

Indicator 3t

Materials support effective use of technology to enhance student learning, drawing attention to evidence and texts as appropriate.
0/0

Indicator 3u

Materials can be easily customized for individual learners.
0/0

Indicator 3u.i

Digital materials include opportunities for teachers to personalize learning for all students, using adaptive or other technological innovations.
0/0

Indicator 3u.ii

Materials can be easily customized for local use.
0/0

Indicator 3v

Materials include or reference technology that provides opportunities for teachers and/or students to collaborate with each other (e.g. websites, discussion groups, webinars, etc.).
0/0

Additional Publication Details

Report Published Date: Thu Aug 31 00:00:00 UTC 2017

Report Edition: 2012

Title ISBN Edition Publisher Year
Holt McDougal Literature Gr 7 Student Edition 978-0-5476-1837-1 Houghton Mifflin Harcourt 2012
Holt McDougal Literature Gr 7 Teacher Edition 978-0-5476-1844-9 Houghton Mifflin Harcourt 2012

About Publishers Responses

All publishers are invited to provide an orientation to the educator-led team that will be reviewing their materials. The review teams also can ask publishers clarifying questions about their programs throughout the review process.

Once a review is complete, publishers have the opportunity to post a 1,500-word response to the educator report and a 1,500-word document that includes any background information or research on the instructional materials.

The publisher has not submitted a response.

Educator-Led Review Teams

Each report found on EdReports.org represents hundreds of hours of work by educator reviewers. Working in teams of 4-5, reviewers use educator-developed review tools, evidence guides, and key documents to thoroughly examine their sets of materials.

After receiving over 25 hours of training on the EdReports.org review tool and process, teams meet weekly over the course of several months to share evidence, come to consensus on scoring, and write the evidence that ultimately is shared on the website.

All team members look at every grade and indicator, ensuring that the entire team considers the program in full. The team lead and calibrator also meet in cross-team PLCs to ensure that the tool is being applied consistently among review teams. Final reports are the result of multiple educators analyzing every page, calibrating all findings, and reaching a unified conclusion.

ELA 3-8 Rubric and Evidence Guides

The ELA review rubrics identify the criteria and indicators for high quality instructional materials. The rubrics support a sequential review process that reflect the importance of alignment to the standards then consider other high-quality attributes of curriculum as recommended by educators.

For ELA, our rubrics evaluate materials based on:

  • Text Quality and Complexity, and Alignment to Standards with Tasks Grounded in Evidence

  • Building Knowledge with Texts, Vocabulary, and Tasks

  • Instructional Supports and Usability

The ELA Evidence Guides complement the rubrics by elaborating details for each indicator including the purpose of the indicator, information on how to collect evidence, guiding questions and discussion prompts, and scoring criteria.

X