Alignment to College and Career Ready Standards: Overall Summary

Bookworms Grade 3 instructional materials partially meet the expectations of alignment. Suggested texts and text sets are high quality, engaging, and organized to support students' growing literacy skills over the course of the school year. Text-dependent questions and tasks in writing, reading, speaking, and listening are rigorous and include guidance and support for the teacher to implement with students. Foundational skills practice to build students' fluency and comprehension is robust to support students' ability to read different types of texts. Daily writing tasks are text-specific and offer practice to build component skills in writing and research. The program does not include comprehensive writing support for process writing or for independent reading, although there are suggested resources for teachers to identify outside the program. The materials do not include culminating tasks over the course of the school year, but do include suggestions for possible outside implementation resources.

See Rating Scale
Understanding Gateways

Alignment

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Partially Meets Expectations

Gateway 1:

Text Quality

0
20
37
42
36
37-42
Meets Expectations
21-36
Partially Meets Expectations
0-20
Does Not Meet Expectations

Gateway 2:

Building Knowledge

0
15
28
32
22
28-32
Meets Expectations
16-27
Partially Meets Expectations
0-15
Does Not Meet Expectations

Usability

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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

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Gateway One Details

The instructional materials for Grade 3 fully meet the expectations of Gateway 1. Included texts are rich and rigorous, offering students a balance of informational and literary reading over the course of the school year. Materials provide many opportunities for students to complete questions and tasks in reading, writing, speaking, and listening that are grounded in evidence, although there is limited engagement with culminating tasks. Support for students' developing literacy skills in foundational areas is explicit and comprehensive, providing teacher guidance and targeted instruction.

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.
19/20
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Criterion Rating Details

The instructional materials for Grade 3 meet the expectations of texts being high quality and rigorous, worthy of multiple close reads. Text selections are appropriately rigorous and support students’ building their reading skills over the course of the school year. The program has a balance of genres and text types included to provide students opportunities to read broadly and deeply as they build their literacy skills. The included text complexity analysis provides less supporting detail to guide teachers with their choices in class.

Indicator 1a

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

The instructional materials reviewed for Grade 3 meet the expectations for texts being of publishable quality and worthy of careful reading, and consider a range of student interests. The included texts have been previously published and are worthy of careful reading. The texts address a range of interests, including real-world topics, historical fiction, biography, and fantasy.

Examples of how these materials meet the expectations of this indicator include (but are not limited to) the following:

  • Because of Winn Dixie by Kate DiCamillo, an honoree of the 2001 Newberry medal, is in the second Nine Weeks Shared Reading Text Unit
  • Lon Po Po by Ed Young, winner of the 1990 Caldecott Medal, is in the second Nine Weeks Interactive Read-Aloud Unit
  • Rosa by Nikki Giovanni, an honoree of the 2006 Caldecott Medal, is in the third Nine Weeks Interactive Read-Aloud Unit
  • Shiloh by Phyllis Reynolds Naylor, winner of the 1991 Newberry Medal, is in the fourth Nine Weeks Interactive Read-Aloud Unit
  • Informational texts such as What is a Biome? by Bobbie Kalman and Soil by Christin Ditchfield are content-rich and accompanied by quality illustrations, photographs, or diagrams. These texts can be examined for textual evidence for research assignments.
  • A Drop Around the World by Barbara Shaw McKinney can be examined multiple times for multiple purposes since the text contains poetry and informational text.
  • Narrative texts encompassing multicultural themes such as Grandfather's Journey by Allen Say, When Marian Sang by Pam Munoz Ryan, and The Keeping Quilt by Patricia Polacco include rich language, quality illustrations, and a well-crafted narrative and prose.

Indicator 1b

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

The instructional materials reviewed for Grade 3 meet the expectations for materials reflecting the distribution of text types and genres required by the standards. Thirty-two texts are used in the lesson plans. The ratio of fiction to nonfiction is appropriate to meet the balance for Grade 3 identified in the CCSS ELA standards for the grade band.

Shared Reading lessons include 10 non-fiction texts and 5 fiction texts.

  • Examples of non-fiction texts students read are: And Then What Happened, Paul Revere by Jean Fritz, A Picture Book of Fredrick Douglass by David Adler, and Ancient Greece by Sandra Newman
  • Examples of fiction texts students read are: Fudge-a-Mania by Judy Blume, Because of Winn-Dixie by Kate DiCamillo, and Miraculous Journey of Edward Tulane by Kate DiCamillo

Interactive Read-Aloud lessons include 6 non-fiction texts and 11 fiction texts.

  • Examples of non-fiction texts student listen to as read-aloud are: What is a Biome? by Bobbie Kalman, Maps and Globes by Jack Knowlton, and Rosa by Nikki Giovanni
  • Examples of fiction texts students listen to as read-aloud are: The BFG by Roald Dahl, American Tall Tales by Mary Pope Osborne, and Shiloh by Phyllis Reynolds Naylor

The distribution of texts types and genres is very diverse, and a variety of genres are found throughout each unit for the entire school year. The number of texts of each included genre are well-distributed. Genres that are covered by this curriculum include the following:

  • folktales
  • informational texts
  • realistic fiction
  • biographies and autobiographies
  • historical fiction
  • novels
  • poetry

Although a wide distribution of genres and text types as required by standards are evident, works of drama are not included in the instructional materials.

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.
4/4
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-
Indicator Rating Details

The instructional materials reviewed for Grade 3 meet the expectations for texts having the appropriate level of complexity for the grade according to quantitative analysis, qualitative analysis, and relationship to their associated student task. Anchor texts are at the appropriate level of rigor and complexity for 3rd grade. For the first quarter, texts have a quantitative Lexile range of 490-720. In the second quarter, texts range from 610- 830 Lexile. In the third quarter this span is 570-700, and in the fourth quarter this moves from 680-850. Overall, these are all appropriate for the grade level. Many of the shared and interactive reading texts are at the high end of the range or appropriate for higher grade levels, but planned scaffolding described in the instructional routines outlined in the teacher's manual makes these an excellent choice. These texts will build knowledge at a variety of complexity levels and on a range of topics.

The associated tasks described in the instructional routines that support the use of these readings include the following:

  • Activating Background Knowledge
  • Modeling Comprehension Strategies
  • Asking Questions During Reading (included in the curriculum) during interactive reading improve access to material, promote comprehension, and generally support their use.

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.)
4/4
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-
Indicator Rating Details

The instructional materials reviewed for Grade 3 meet the expectations that materials support students’ increasing literacy skills over the course of the school year. In general, texts for both the Shared and Interactive Readings are at or slightly above grade level requirements throughout the year. Most texts (for both Shared and Interactive Reading) are within the appropriate grade level Lexile band:

  • The texts in the first nine weeks have Lexile levels from 490-720. An example in the first nine weeks in Interactive Reading is the novel The BFG, which as an overall Lexile of 720. This text contains British words and invented words. As a read-aloud, the teacher scaffolds student understanding of this complex text over 17 days by reading aloud. The lesson plans have the teacher stop often to check student understanding with whole group discussion questions and opportunities to write summaries, diary entries, and emails.
  • The texts in the second nine weeks have Lexile levels from 610-830. An example in the second nine weeks in Shared Reading is And Then What Happened, Paul Revere?, which has a Lexile of 830. This text contains a historical context thereby it has historic language. As a Shared Reading lesson, the teacher scaffolds understanding by showing students a video prior to reading the text. As the text is choral read over six days, the teacher helps students understand the text by making a timeline and synthesizing parts of the text.
  • The texts in the third nine weeks have Lexile levels from 570-700. An example in the third nine weeks in Interactive Reading is Rosa, which has a Lexile of 900. This read aloud text contains very complex sentences about a historical time in American history. To help students access this rigorous text, the teacher creates a semantic map of the vocabulary and provides opportunities for students to make connections to the text and opinions about the text.
  • The texts in the last nine weeks have Lexile levels from 680-850. An example in the fourth nine weeks in Interactive Reading is Shiloh, which has a Lexile of 890. This read aloud text contains very complex Knowledge Demands with the concepts of abused animals, socio-economic issues, and family dynamics. To support students' understanding of this rigorous text, the teacher lesson plans suggest places for stopping to ask key questions. The plans suggest opportunities for students to process their understanding by writing lists, advice, and summary.

Texts increase appropriately throughout the school year, with students engaging in increasingly complex and rigorous materials as they grow their reading skills.

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
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Indicator Rating Details

The instructional materials reviewed for Grade 3 partially meet the expectations for materials being accompanied by a text complexity analysis and rationale for educational purpose and placement in the grade level.

A rationale and text complexity explanation (not detailed analysis) is located in the Grade 3 Manual under the heading Bookworms Books (pgs. 6-7). Texts were proposed by a group of teachers and then reviewed by Bookworms creators. Fictional texts were selected based on content and the potential to build knowledge. Non-fiction texts were selected based on social studies and science content with the potential to build knowledge. The Lexile band for grades 2-3 (450-790) were considered for text complexity.

Some of the guiding principles used in the selection of texts include: shared reading texts are mostly in the grade level bands, texts (when feasible) are in Lexile ascending order, and interactive read-aloud texts are mainly above grade level.

The rationale and text complexity explanation is general, rather than specific to each text selection.

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.
2/2
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-
Indicator Rating Details

The instructional materials reviewed for Grade 3 meet the expectations for supporting materials providing opportunities for student to engage in a range and volume of reading. The instructional materials include opportunities for students to read daily across a wide range and volume of texts that are read aloud by the teacher, read aloud chorally, and read during shared reading as well as a daily independent reading time for self-selected texts. Texts are divided into Interactive, Shared Reading, and Self-Selected texts.

Interactive Reading texts are often above grade level and are read aloud by the teacher who also leads students in discussion of the text.

  • In the First Nine Weeks students are read the texts The BFG by Roald Dahl, What Is a Biome? by Bobbie Kalman, Bringing the Rain to the Kapiti Plain by Verna Aardema, and Pinduali by Janell Cannon
  • In the Third Nine Weeks students are read the texts Grandfather’s Journey by Allen Say, When Marian Siang by Pam Munoz Ryan, Harvesting Hope The Story of Cesar Chaves by Kathleen Krull, Rosa by Nikki Giovanni, One Hen: How One Small Loan Made a Big Difference by Katie Smith Milway, and The Keeping Quilt by Patria Polacco.

Shared Reading Texts are at grade level and are read chorally as a class for a specific purpose and then reread with a partner for different purpose.

  • In the Second Nine Weeks students read the texts Soil by Christin Ditchfield, Minerals, Rocks, and Soil by Barbara J. Davis, Because of Winn Dixie by Kate DiCamillo, and And then what happened, Paul Revere? by Jean Fritz chorally and with a partner.
  • In the Fourth Nine Weeks students read the texts Twisters and Other Terrible Storms by Will Osborne and Mary Pope Osborne, Here Lies the Librarian by Richard Peck, Who Was Franklin Roosevelt? by Margaret Frith, and Ancient Greece by Sandra Newman chorally and with a partner.

Self-Selected Texts are read during Differentiated Instruction time while the teacher is working with groups. Students self-select texts from multiple reading levels and record texts using a reading log.

Criterion 1g - 1n

Materials provide opportunities for rich and rigorous evidence-based discussions and writing about texts to build strong literacy skills.
11/16
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-
Criterion Rating Details

The materials for Grade 3 partially meet the expectations that students will have opportunities for rich, rigorous discussions and writing tasks that are evidence based. Questions and tasks associated with the texts focus students’ attention back to the texts and are organized to build their speaking and listening skills. Grammar and conventions instruction is embedded to facilitate students’ application of language skills in and out of context. Students do on-demand writing practice almost every day. The materials do not include culminating tasks over the course of the year, nor comprehensive writing process support; rather, the materials provide guidance for teachers to identify their own process and culminating tasks.

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
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Indicator Rating Details

The instructional materials reviewed for Grade 3 meet the expectations that most questions, tasks, and assignments are text-dependent and require students to engage with the text directly and to draw on textual evidence to support both what is explicit as well as valid inferences from the text. During daily discussions and written assignments, students respond to text-dependent prompts and provide evidence for their thinking. Students must engage with the text to answer questions and complete tasks and assignments.

In the first nine weeks, students read the text Owen Foote, Money Man by Stephanie Greene and answer the text-dependent questions and tasks such as:

  • Why does Owen like Mr. White? Give reasons for your opinion.
  • What does it mean to say that Mrs. Foote doesn’t believe in soda? Does the author mean that literally?
  • Why does the soda from Mr. White taste different to Owen?
  • Use a two-column chart to make a list of positive and negative things about Owen and Joseph’s idea to fish for profit. When you make lists like this, you can more easily describe and evaluate the character’s actions.

In the second nine weeks, students read the text American Tall Tales by Mary Pope Osborne and answer the text-dependent questions and tasks such as:

  • So far, what have you noticed that makes this story a tall tale?
  • Why did John Henry keep hammering?
  • I want you choose one of the three characters we’ve read about – Pecos Bill, Paul Bunyan, or John Henry – and write two lists of words. In one list, write character traits. In the other list, write words that tell about how they look and what they can do. Draw a chart that looks like this. Write the name of your character here and write character traits in this column and other adjectives in this one.

In the third nine weeks, students read the text The Miraculous Journey of Edward Tulane by Kate DiCamillo and answer the text-dependent questions and tasks such as:

  • What do we learn from the description of Edward’s wardrobe?
  • What adjectives would you use to describe Edward?
  • How does the author provide us a cliff hanger at the end of chapter 2?
  • Reread the stanza from the poem “The Testing Tree”. What mood is the author setting for us by choosing to open with this poem? Is this mood consistent or inconsistent with the mood in the first two chapters?

In the fourth nine weeks, student read the text Shiloh by Phyllis Ryenolds Naylor and answer the text-dependent questions and tasks such as:

  • Make a list of the four reasons Marty does not like Judd Travers.
  • Compare David Howard’s home and mother to Marty’s home and mother. Start by telling how they are similar. Then tell how they are different.
  • Write a diary entry as if you were Marty. Marty has broken a promise and stolen a dog. What thoughts and feelings do you think he is having? Remember that you must write from Marty’s point of view. When you use the pronoun I, it means Marty, not you!

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).
0/2
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-
Indicator Rating Details

The instructional materials for Grade 3 do not meet expectations that the materials support students' completion of culminating tasks that after engaging with sequences of text dependent questions and tasks.

Culminating tasks are not included in this curriculum. There are sequences of text dependent questions that address some research standards within writing; however, these do not lead or build to a culminating activity. While there are daily writing and discussion prompts of very high quality, there are no multi-faceted projects in either Interactive or Shared Reading.

In the teacher's manual it states, "We recommend that schools consider periodic holistic performance assessments in reading and writing that have been designed externally rather than creating their own assessments geared toward specific standards... For each nine-week marking period, schools might choose either a writing or a reading task to measure the extent to which the curriculum is building student competence over time."

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.)
2/2
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Indicator Rating Details

The instructional materials for Grade 3 meet expectations that materials provide frequent opportunities and protocols for evidence-based discussions that encourage the modeling and use of academic vocabulary and syntax. Daily text-dependent discussion questions are included for both Interactive and Shared Readings. Students are often directed to use new vocabulary terms both during discussion and when writing responses to text.

Protocols are included throughout lessons for students to “talk to your partner” or “ask your partner” prompting student discussion. “Every-Pupil-Response” Protocols include talking to a partner, pair sharing, polling the class, thumbs up and thumbs down, and written responses.

  • In the second nine weeks, during the shared reading of the text Soil, in Week 2 on Day 8 students are led in a comprehension discussion. Questions included in this discussion are:
    • Look at the map on p. 8. Are there lots of tin mines in the United States?
    • What kind of mines would you find in Alaska? (p. 8)
    • What does ore contain? (p. 9)
    • What type of mine is used for gold? (p. 10; gold isn’t mentioned, but silver is)
    • Which type of mine is probably friendliest to the environment? (p. 11)
    • If you were building playground equipment, would you make it out of titanium or zinc? (p. 12)
  • In the fourth nine weeks, during the interactive reading of the text Jim Henson: The Guy Who Played with Puppets, on Day 4 students are prompted think of important things to add to Jim Henson’s timeline. The teacher asks, “What events can we add that have now happened during his adult life?” Students then discuss events and place them on the timeline in chronological order.

Teachers often pause and model their thinking using academic vocabulary during Interactive Read aloud texts.

  • In the first nine weeks, during the shared reading of the text Fudgeamania, in Week 3 on Day 11 the teacher states, “An inference will help me here. If I put some facts together, I can figure out who Buzz Tubman is, even though the author doesn’t tell us.”
  • In the third nine weeks, during the interactive reading of the text When Marian Sang, on Day 4 the lesson plans prompt the teacher to stress the difference between the literal and figurative meanings of the word grow in the sentence, “Marian needed to grow.” It is noted that teachers need to be sure to use the terms literal and figurative during discussion.

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.
2/2
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Indicator Rating Details

The instructional materials for Grade 3 meet expectations that materials support students’ listening and speaking about what they are reading and studying/researching with relevant follow-up questions and supports. During both Interactive and Shared Reading, students are provided a focus before they read to “help them access relevant prior knowledge and lead them toward an appropriate mental representation of text meaning.” (Bookworms Grade 3 Manual, page 51)

  • In the fourth nine weeks, during the interactive reading of the text Shiloh, on Day 15 the teacher provides students with the lesson’s focus, “Later today I will ask you to write a thank-you letter. Soon you will see who should write such a letter, who should receive it, and why.”

During choral reading and interactive read-alouds, teachers model seven comprehension strategies that students can use to better comprehend and discuss a text. These strategies are making connections, asking questions to aid understanding, creating sensory images, inferring, determining importance, synthesizing, and self-monitoring. Procedures for these strategies can be found in lesson plans and on pages 51 and 52 of the Grade 3 Manual.

  • In the third nine weeks, during the shared reading of the text The Miraculous Journey of Edward Tulane, in Week 1 on Day 2 the teacher models making connections, creating sensory images, asking questions to aid understanding, inferring, and self-monitoring. The lesson directs teachers to model their thinking by saying, “I have been thinking about where this house actually is. I can tell that it is probably in the past, because they live a very formal life and Edward is such an old fashioned toy. And now if they will go on a ship called the Queen Mary, I know that was actually a real ship that sailed across the Atlantic Ocean. Since they are going to go to London, they might actually be in the United States. But I can’t tell where.”

Discussion starters are provided for shared and interactive readings that require students to combine information from the text with their prior knowledge in order to make inferences. Teachers are directed to follow up with student answers by asking how the student knows the answer or further question them to help them find the information to make the logical inference. Most discussions have students working with a partner to ensure that all students are involved.

  • In the first nine weeks, during the interactive reading of the text The BFG, on Day 6 students are asked, “Why do you think the other giants were bullying the BFG? Tell your partner.”

Graphic organizers are modeled to help students organize information from text and students must be active listeners during shared and interactive readings in order to participate in discussion and complete written responses.

  • In the third nine weeks, during the interactive reading of the text When Marian Sang, on Day 5 students finish a timeline of the events of Marian’s life based on what they have read in the text.

Pair-Share Written Responses are shared before beginning new reading each day. Students read and respond to another’s written responses.

  • In the second nine weeks, during the interactive reading of the text American Tall Tales, on Day 3 students read the written response from Day 2 before they begin the new lesson. Students are asked to share with a partner their tall tales about Slue-foot Sue that were written at the end in the previous lesson, “Write a paragraph telling about the life of Slue-foot Sue before she met Bill. What do you think she did? And remember to exaggerate! Make your tale as tall as you can.”

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.
1/2
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Indicator Rating Details

The instructional materials for Grade 3 partially meet expectations that 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.

While an abundance of on demand daily writing tasks are given, there are no lessons centered on process. While all prompts are connected to texts, there is minimal support for students to develop the writing process to address the process itself. There are frequent opportunities for rich and rigorous evidence-based discussions and writing about texts to build strong literacy skills; however, this materials do not include opportunities for students to complete multiple drafts and revisions, including focused projects over time. The materials do include some considerations for teachers to address this, however.

Examples of on-demand writing prompts include:

  • In the Interactive Read-Aloud Unit, First Nine Weeks, Day 5 of The BFG, students write to the following prompt: "You have learned about frobscottle. Write an advertisement that would get people to buy it. You will need to list a few wonderful thinks about it. You may also illustrate your ad" (p. 11).
  • In the Shared Reading Unit, Second Nine Weeks, Week 2, Day 8 of Minerals, Rocks, and Soil, students write to the following prompt: "Write a paragraph that summarizes what we have learned about mining" (p. 16).
  • In the Interactive Read-Aloud Unit, Fourth Nine Weeks, Day 9 of Shiloh, students write to the following prompt: "Imagine that someone asks you what's happened so far. Write a summary of events up to this point. Remember that when you write a summary you need to decide what's important and what's not. You include only the most important facts" (p. 18).
  • In the Shared Reading Unit, Fourth Nine Weeks, Week 4, Day 19 of Here Lies the Librarian, students write to the following prompt: "Pretend you are Jake and rewrite the newspaper article about the race" (p. 25).

From the Grade 3 Teacher's Manual (p. 11):

You will see that there are not as many interactive read-aloud lesson plans as there are shared reading lesson plans. This difference is deliberate. Nearly half of the 45-minute time segments for interactives must be reserved for process writing so that students learn to compose, revise, and edit their own writing pieces. We have not designed this portion of the curriculum. Teachers should work together to use consistent process writing procedures and language and to sequence the three writing genres (narrative, informative, and persuasive/argumentative) across the school year.

Indicator 1l

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

The instructional materials for Grade 3 partially meet expectations that materials provide opportunities for students to address different text types of writing that reflect the distribution required by the standards.

A variety of prompts include a distribution of opinion, informative/explanatory, and narrative writings as required by the Grade 3 standards, however the short written responses do not provide adequate opportunities for students to meet all aspects of the Grade 3 Standards that address text types. Teachers will need to supplement this curriculum with other writing resources to meet all requirements of the Grade 4 standards that address text type distribution. In Grade 3, students need to learn how to write opinion, informational, and narrative pieces with topic introductions, details or facts, linking words or temporal words and a concluding statement/section or sense of closure. (Writing Standards 3.1.a-3.1.d, 3.2.a-3.2.d, 3.3.a-3.3.d). There are missed opportunities to address all those required standards.

Written responses from interactive reading and shared reading are completed as seat work during small-group time. Students have the opportunity to complete one text-based response each day, and two on the days when an interactive read aloud is done. Teachers are instructed to model for students at the beginning of the year to establish norms for length and quality of these written responses. The prompts vary in structure and address different text types.

  • In the First Nine Weeks of the Interactive Read-Aloud of Pinduli, on Day 3, students respond to the following written opinion response prompt: "Pinduli was very clever and now the animals will leave her food every day. Write a paragraph and tell whether you think it was really fair for Pinduli to fool the animals so that they believe something that isn't true and will leave her food forever. Give your reasons" (p. 50).
  • In the First Nine Weeks of the Shared Reading Unit of Fudge-a-mania, in Week 3 on Day 12, students respond the written opinion response prompt: “Why do you think Peter is nervous about Jimmy's arrival? Give reasons for your opinion” (p. 16).
  • In the First Nine Weeks of the Interactive Read-Aloud of What is a Biome?, on Day 4, students respond to the following written informative response prompt: "Write a paragraph and make a comparison between scrublands and deserts. Tell how they are similar and how they are different" (p. 35).
  • In the Fourth Nine Weeks of the Shared Reading Unit of Twisters and Other Terrible Storms, in Week 1 Day 4, students respond to the following written informative response prompt: "Write a procedure for tornado formation. Use information from pages 59 and 60, but write it in your own words" (p. 8).
  • In the Second Nine Weeks of the Interactive Read-Aloud of Pecos Bill, on Day 2, students respond to the following written narrative response prompt: "Write a paragraph telling about the life of Slue-foot Sue before she met Bill. What do you think she did? And remember to exaggerate. Make your tale as tall as you can" (p. 16).
  • In the Third Nine Weeks of the Interactive Read-Aloud of Grandfather's Journey, on Day 1, students respond to the following written narrative response prompt: "Write what you think Allen Say's grandfather might have written on the day he arrived in America. Remember to write from the grandfather's point-of-view" (p. 3).

Indicator 1m

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

The instructional materials for Grade 3 partially meet expectations that materials include frequent opportunities for evidence-based writing to support careful analyses, well-defended claims, and clear information. Most writing included is informational (responses to literature and nonfiction texts), and tasks are appropriate to grade level. Approximately 10 minutes a day is dedicated to writing, and students do have an opportunity to share their written work with a partner daily. Most writing is text-dependent.

There is minimal support included on how to implement or teach evidence-based writing. Additional instructional supports are needed for teachers to guide students’ understanding of analysis writing and presenting well-defended claims and clear information.

For example:

  • During the first nine weeks (Day 4, What Is a Biome?) of the interactive reading lessons, students are asked to write a paragraph making a comparison between scrublands and deserts, and to tell how they are similar and how they are different. This writing prompt requires evidence from the text, but no additional materials or models are provided to help students make a comparison.
  • In the second nine weeks (week 4) of the shared reading lessons, one writing prompt for Because of Winn Dixie asks students to write a letter from Opal to her mother that tells the events of the past few days. The prompt asks students to use evidence from the text, but also requires the skill of summarizing and structuring a letter. Teachers would need to develop models and supports for students who need assistance in summarizing and letter construction.
  • In the third nine weeks of the Interactive Read-Aloud, students have the following prompt from (When Marian Sang, Day 4): “Today you have a choice about what to write. You can either pretend you are Marian or pretend you are the great voice teacher. Write in your diary that night. Be sure to express your feelings. Marian might have felt fear and courage. The teacher might have felt surprise and joy. And remember to write from the other person’s point of view. Be sure to use the pronoun I.” This prompt requires evidence from the text, but students may need more guidance on how a diary entry could look or specific instruction for writing with a certain point of view.
  • Here Lies the Librarian, a book included in the fourth nine weeks of shared reading instruction, contains the writing prompt: “Reread the last sentence of the chapter. What do you think it means?” This asks for students to analyze the text, but more instruction or guidance may be needed for students to complete this independently.

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.
2/2
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Indicator Rating Details

The instructional materials for Grade 3 meet expectations that 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.

Language standards are addressed both in small group lessons and during the Interactive Read Aloud, including regular routines for “sentence composing”. These routines include teacher modeling and can then be incorporated into daily written responses. Like the read-aloud itself, sentence composing is a whole-class activity. It is led by the teacher, who hand-writes or keyboards sentences on the board or projects them with a document camera.

Application opportunities are found in the sentence composing component of the lesson. Bookworms teaches grammar and conventions through sentence combining.

“Grammar instruction in Bookworms is based on the daily study of sentences that come from the read-aloud. This approach is called sentence composing, and it is a well-established alternative to descriptive grammar instruction (Gartland & Smolkin, 2016; Killgallon & Killgallon, 2000). Drawing sentences from the text of the day’s read-aloud has two advantages: They are crafted by professional authors and they are fresh in mind." These sentences (sometimes in slightly modified form) are used in two brief activities each day, selected from a set of four basic possibilities. They include:

  • Combining. The teacher presents two or three short sentences and leads the students in combining them into a single sentence with a more complex syntax (Lawlor, 1983; Saddler, 2005).
  • Unscrambling. In advance of the lesson, the teacher breaks a relatively long sentence from the text into words and short phrases.
  • Imitating. The teacher presents a single, well-crafted sentence from the text, and then replaces one or more content words (nouns, verbs, adjectives, adverbs) with blanks.
  • Expanding. The teacher presents a simple sentence from the text and guides the students in adding to it by attaching words, phrases, and clauses, making the syntax more complex. (Grade 3 Manual, page 58-60)

Examples of Sentence Combining include:

Quarter 1

Sentence Composing - The BFG - Day 1

  • Expand: He had removed his black cloak and got rid of his trumpet, and now ________.
  • Imitate: Fetch me four very tall grandfather clocks.______ me four very tall grandfather clocks.

Quarter 2

Sentence Composing - Lon Po Po - Day 2

  • Combine: They climbed down. They went into the house. They closed the door with the latch. They fell peacefully asleep. [Prompt creating a series and using the word and before the last item.]
  • Expand: The wolf fetched the rope.

Quarter 3

Sentence Composing - Harvesting Hope - Day 2

  • Expand: Cesar thought he might die of embarrassment.
  • Combine: People believe I am a clown. I speak Spanish. [Prompt use of the causal words and phrases, such as because or which is why.]

Quarter 4

Sentence Composing - Shiloh - Day 4

  • Combine: I’m tense as a cricket that night. I’m tense when Dad drives up in his Jeep.
  • Unscramble: I run / barefoot down / the front / steps and over / to where / Shiloh’s lying / his tail / just thumping / like crazy / in the grass

The following day, students are asked to apply the practice to their own work. This does not give the teacher much base material when teaching conventions of writing and sentence structure and teachers would need to

The following is a chart that includes the grammar/conventions skilled outlined in the standards and included in the 3rd grade materials. (Bookworms, Grade 3 Manual, page 70 )

Grade 3 Grammar/Sentence Construction

Skill

Sample Cue

Use and identify nouns, pronouns, verbs, adjectives, and adverbs

Imitating

Let’s start by removing 1 noun and 1 verb.

Irregular plural nouns

Imitating, substitute regular plural

Could we write deers instead of foxes?

Irregular verbs

Imitating, substitute incorrect past tense

Could we write swinged here?

Simple verb tenses

Imitating, prompt changes in time

What if this happened in the future?

Subject-verb agreement

Imitating, change singular to plural subject

What do we need to do with the verb?

Pronoun-antecedent agreement

Expanding, when pronoun is added

Why do we write she and not they?

Comparative and superlative adjectives

Imitating, prompt substitutions

Instead of bigger, what if we write large?

Coordinating and subordinating conjunctions

Combining, prompt use of conjunctions

Can we write but here? Can we say because?

Simple compound and complex sentences

Expanding, prompt adding whole clauses

If we wrote which, what can we add to it?

Commas in addresses

Expanding, add a student’s name

What if we addressed this sentence to Mike?

Commas and quotation marks for dialogue

Expanding, prompt making sentence a quote

Unscrambling of a sentence with a quote

Which words are spoken? What punctuation do we need?

Add suffixes to base words

Point out key spellings as you write.

What did I do to happy to make happiness?





Criterion 1o - 1q

Materials in reading, writing, speaking, listening, and language targeted to support foundational reading development are aligned to the standards.
6/6
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Criterion Rating Details

The instructional materials for Grade 3 fully meet the expectations for support of students’ foundational skills development. The materials support building students’ comprehension through targeted lessons with the component parts of reading instruction (including phonics, word recognition, reading fluency, etc.) in a clear progression. Small group, large group, and some individual instruction is supported so students can achieve literacy acceleration across the school year. Students are guided to read with purpose in shared reading, interactive read-alouds, and as they reflect in their writing. The materials include links to external resources as well to support assessment implementation where appropriate.

Indicator 1o

Materials, questions, and tasks address grade-level CCSS for foundational skills by providing explicit instruction and assessment in phonics and word recognition that demonstrate a research-based progression.
2/2
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Indicator Rating Details

The instructional materials reviewed for Grade 3 meet expectations for materials, questions, and tasks address grade-level CCSS for foundational skills by providing instruction in phonics, word recognition, vocabulary, and reading fluency in a research-based and transparent progression.

Foundational skills are presented to address phonics, word recognition, and vocabulary (strong opportunities for vocabulary development in each shared/read aloud lesson in every unit). There are word study lessons described in the Word Study document as well as in the Shared Lessons to guide for word study (which addresses phonics, spelling, and meaning vocabulary). In the first six weeks of third grade, students learning doubling, Y-I, Doubling in Multisyllabic Words, and Prefixes and Suffixes.

  • For example, in Week 3 of the First Nine Weeks, students learn how to change the spelling of words that have a CY base and a VY base. Each week, students learn one set of words as an entire class with consistent instruction across the week and a traditional spelling test every five days. After the first six weeks of third grade, the vocabulary words are divided into syllables as to teach students to decode multisyllabic words. Students practice word sorts with word hunts. Irregularly spelled words are addressed and labeled as belonging in the oddball category. Differentiation of foundational skills occurs in small groups. One type of the differentiation lessons addresses word recognition and fluency. Students are identified for this support with the diagnostic Informal Decoding Inventory.

Tier 2 Words are addressed in the Interactive Read-Aloud lessons. The Tier 2 vocabulary words are related to the read-aloud selection. For example, in the First Nine Weeks, Day 1 of The BFG lesson, the teacher directions emphasize sprinting and brilliant. “One of the words from the book so far is sprinting. What word?” (p. 3).

Fluency is addressed in Shared Reading Lessons and in differentiated lessons for small groups. In Shared Reading Lessons, students participate in choral reading, echo reading, and rereading. In small group lessons, students’ reading fluency will be addressed based on results of the informal Decoding Inventory.

Indicator 1p

Materials, lessons, and questions provide instruction in and practice of word analysis skills in a research-based progression in connected text and tasks.
2/2
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Indicator Rating Details

The instructional materials meet expectations that materials, questions, and tasks guide students to read with purpose and understanding and to make frequent connections between acquisition of foundational skills and making meaning from reading.

In the Grade 3 Manual, word study is described as a way “to move systematically across grade levels from sound to pattern to meaning” (p.12). The focus of grade 3 word study is “multisyllabic decoding based on syllable types, and the link between spelling and meaning. Words for study and analysis are selected from the meaning vocabulary in the shared reading selections. The manual contains explanations to the teacher about syllable types and word morphology such as common prefixes and suffixes. During Identify and Explain Syllable Types, students learn how to use chunking to decode, spell, and make meaning of words. According to Walpole and McKenna, “Consequently, word study not only extends decoding and spelling, it provides additional encounters with new words whose meanings are important to learn” (p.12).

During the Word Study Scope and Sequence, 10 minutes are suggested for Word Study and Meaning Vocabulary. In Grade 3, First 9 Weeks, Week 1, students are guided by the teacher to sort by pattern for base words +ing/ed (CVVC, CVC, CVCC). For example, shout becomes shouted and watch becomes watching (p. 2). Later in the lesson, students sort the words such as shouted and watching in their word study notebook. In week 6 for the First 9 Weeks, students are learning about prefixes and suffixes such as -ment, com-, and re- (p. 37). In Grade 3, Fourth 9 Weeks, Week 1 students learn: “Pres sure (closed, vce) is a word that means different things in different places.” If you are talking about pressure in sports, you might mean that one player is trying to force another player to do something” (p. 4). On some days, students are asked to go back to the text and find the words in context and talk about their meanings. Otherwise students participate in word study practice with student notebooks during differentiated group time.

The materials provide differentiated small group lessons for teachers to provide support of foundational word analysis skills. After students are assessed using the Informal Decoding Inventory, the teacher places students in one of four small groups. Depending on placement, students receive more targeted support in specific foundational skills such as word recognition skills and multisyllabic decoding.

It should be noted that these word study lessons do not include student materials (such as the student notebook) which would need to be generated by the teacher.

Indicator 1q

Instructional opportunities are frequently built into the materials for students to practice and achieve reading fluency in oral and silent reading, that is, to read on-level prose and poetry with accuracy, rate appropriate to the text, and expression.
2/2
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Indicator Rating Details

The instructional materials meet expectations that instructional opportunities are frequently built into the materials for students to practice and achieve reading fluency in oral and silent reading, that is, to read on-level prose and poetry with accuracy, rate appropriate to the text, and expression.

According to Walpole and McKenna of the Grade 3 Manual, “fluency is built through repeated reading” (p. 51). Students have the opportunity to read and reread one segment of text each day, which includes informational and narrative. Students have the opportunity to do silent reading during differentiated lessons. Once students complete their text-based reading, they may do self-selected silent reading. In the Shared Reading Lessons, students have the opportunity to practice oral reading through choral reading, echo reading, and rereading with a partner. In the Lesson Plan, teachers are provided with page numbers for having students echo or choral read. After echo or choral reading, teachers are to pair students up by reading achievement ranking. The teacher is directed to teach students how to participate as a reader and a coach. The expectation is that students will read with expression. When the reader makes an error, the coach should prompt the reader to reread. There is a missed opportunity to emphasize rate in the partner reading activity.

Since most texts in the Grade 3 Master Book List are narrative and informational, students have the opportunity to become fluent readers of those styles of texts using choral reading, echo reading, and rereading. One of the texts, A Drop Around the World, in Quarter 2, provides students the chance to to hear poetry modeled by the teacher. Although the grade level band of this text is most appropriate for students in grades 4-5, there is a missed opportunity for Grade 3 students to practice reading grade level poetry fluently.

In order to assess students’ fluency, learning modules about screening and diagnosis are provided on the website. Teachers are directed to use DIBELS Next (which is free to access and to use) to assess each student’s fluency. The materials suggest providing small group instruction around fluency and comprehension based on the results of the DIBELS assessment. Small group instruction around fluency can be found in the books by Walpole and McKenna, which the teacher will need to buy.

According to a section in the Grade 3 Manual called Walkthrough Observation Tool Designed to Enhance Implementation, teachers can utilize narrative text during small group time to help students build fluency (p. 91). Students echo or choral read for 5-6 minutes and then reread with a partner or whisper read.

Gateway Two

Building Knowledge with Texts, Vocabulary, and Tasks

Partially Meets Expectations

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Gateway Two Details

The instructional materials for Grade 3 partially meet the expectations of the Gateway 2. Texts are organized to support students' building knowledge of different topics and there is much support for students to engage with and grow their academic vocabulary over the course of the school year. Sets of text-dependent questions and tasks provide opportunities for students to analyze ideas within and across texts. The materials do not include comprehensive culminating tasks for students to demonstrate integration of the literacy standards and skills, nor is there full support for students' independent reading.

Criterion 2a - 2h

22/32

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.
4/4
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Indicator Rating Details

The instructional materials reviewed for Grade 3 meet the expectations for texts organized around topics to build students’ ability to read and comprehend complex texts independently and proficiently. The texts and text sets are organized to provide students with cohesive topics to grow their knowledge as they practice their literacy skills.

For example, in Grade 3 during the second nine weeks of Shared Reading the topic focus is “Rocks, Soil, and Minerals.” Students learn about the composition and use of rocks, soil, and minerals in different texts:

  • Soil is a nonfiction book written by Christin Ditchfield.
  • Minerals, Rocks and Soil is a book written by Barbara Davis. Students are asked to write a paragraph that summarizes what they learned about mining. Also, they are asked to summarize what they learned about strategies that good readers use to read informational texts.
  • The “super sentence” vocabulary practice to support the topic include the words ingredients, bacteria, and nutrients.

In Grade 3 unit 1, the topic focus is “government,” and students learn about government structures and US history. Some texts are included in this unit include Owen Foote, Money Man (fiction), The Constitution of the United States (nonfiction), The Congress of the United States (nonfiction), and Fudge-A-Mania (fiction).

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
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Indicator Rating Details

The Grade 3 instructional materials meet expectations that the 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. Through the Comprehension Discussion Questions, Model Comprehension Strategies and Ask Questions During Reading, and Written Responses (in some places called Written Follow-Up) students address facets of this indicator with nearly every text. As students read and engage in large class, small group, and individual work, they engage in study of words and components of texts.

The following examples demonstrate how students analyze author’s craft and language:

  • Students analyze author’s craft in the first Shared Reading Unit, Week 1, Day 1 of Owen Foote with: “What is the author telling us at the bottom of page 9 when the text says “She looked at the expression on Lydia’s face. “Not that you ever think of it,” she finished weakly” (p. 2). Later in the Unit (Week 2, Day 9), students analyze: “What does it mean to say that Mrs. Foote doesn’t believe in soda? Does the author mean that literally?” (p. 13).
  • Students also analyze author’s craft, in the Fourth Nine Weeks of the Interactive Read-Aloud Unit, while reading Shiloh in Day 1. The teacher asks the following: "As I read, I want you to notice the tense the author uses. [Stop at mid-page and prompt that it’s present tense.] Most novels are written in the past tense. Why do you think she uses the present tense? [One reason is that it lends a sense of immediacy to events, as though they are happening right now.]” (p. 8).

These demonstrate a few of the frequent opportunities for students to analyze key ideas, details, and structure are also part of daily analysis. For example:

  • When reading Lon Po Po in the Third Nine Weeks, Day 2 of Interactive Read-Aloud, students are asked, ”If Shang is really small and weak, do you think she could have lifted the wolf to the gingko nuts by herself? Why is she pretending that she is small and weak? What do you think will happen when Tao helps?” (p. 11).
  • When reading Sundiata in the Third Nine Weeks, Day 2 of Interactive Read-Aloud, students are asked to talk with a partner about: “Why did Sundiata think it was important to walk?” (p.5)
  • In the Third Nine Weeks of Shared Reading, while reading A Picture Book of Frederick Douglass, a section on text structure is included which reads as follows: “This book is a biography. Remember that the word biography has two parts. Bio means life and graph means writing. [Write the word and underline its parts.] A biography is when someone writes the story of a person’s life. Biographies are usually written in time order. That makes sense, doesn’t it? In this biography of Frederick Douglass, the author, David Adler, begins with his birth and then takes us on a journey through his entire life. As we read the book together, we can make a timeline of the most important events. [Begin timeline.] Let’s start with 1818, the year Frederick Douglass was born. What do we know so far?” (p. 23).
  • In the Fourth Nine Weeks of Shared Reading, Week 1, Day 3, while reading Twisters and Other Terrible Storms, students focus on text structure with the following questions: “What was the main idea of the chapter on Wind? What was the main idea of the chapter on Clouds? Our new chapter is called Rain and Storms. I can see by looking at the text features that we will be learning also about lightening and thunder and about hail” (p. 6).

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.
4/4
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Indicator Rating Details

The instructional materials for Grade 3 meet expectations 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.

Page 17 of the teacher’s manual states: “Nearly all questions provided for in shared reading are inferential, meaning that students have to combine information from within the text, or between the text and prior knowledge to answer.” This is true throughout the materials for the entire school year. Page 18 states “Students will have the opportunity to complete one text-based written response per day.” This occurs throughout the school year. This relates to standards RI.3.1 and RL.3.1.

Students are often asked to examine and analyze details and key ideas to integrate their knowledge and ideas. To complete these tasks, students must marshall previous learning from content to text features, access academic vocabulary, and synthesize reading and writing skills to demonstrate their understanding. For example, as students read What is a Biome?, the questions and tasks students are asked to answer and write about include:

  • Analyzing details in the diagrams, maps, photographs, and captions, Thinking about food chains, and then further thinking about climate and weather
  • Synthesizing what they’ve read and sharing suggestions for protecting endangered animals.

Students are also asked integrate knowledge and ideas from multiple texts, where they will have to leverage earlier learning and engage multiple skills to complete the prompts. A representative example includes:

  • Students read The Congress of the United States after reading the Constitution of the United States, both by Christine Taylor-Butler. On the final day, they are asked the following questions:
    • We had a timeline in our last book, but it was different. Why would the author use two different timelines?
    • How does it help you to understand a book about Congress if you already know about the Virginia Compromise?
    • Why do you think this book does not talk about the 3/5 compromise?

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).
2/4
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Indicator Rating Details

The materials for grade 3 partially meet the expectations of indicator 2d. Materials provide some supports for students to demonstrate their knowledge of topics through integrated skills (e.g., a combination of reading, writing, speaking, and listening) after they have followed text-dependent questions and tasks. To fully support students’ work with culminating tasks over the course of the school year, the teacher will have to identify and /or create other resources. The materials do provide some examples and guidance as to external resources for this purpose. Some examples of how the program supports students in demonstrating knowledge via integrated skills include (but are not limited to) the following:

  • In A Drop Around the World Day 3, students integrate information from technical illustrations to compare and contrast.
  • On Day 3 of Maps and Globes, students compare old and new maps and move to discussion of the topic of negative elevation, points on land that are below sea level (e.g., Death Valley, the Dead Sea). Students work in pairs to complete this brief culminating task.

In Lon Po Po Day 2, students to compare what they learn from listening with what they know about the traditional tale of Red Riding Hood.

Indicator 2e

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

The instructional materials for Grade 3 meet expectations that materials include a cohesive, year-long plan for students to interact with and build key academic vocabulary words in and across texts.

Academic vocabulary practice is embedded throughout the third grade materials, and is prominently featured in the Interactive Reading lessons, under the headings “Model a Comprehension Strategy and Ask Questions During Reading.” For example, in the first nine week unit of Interactive Reading (on the first day of reading The BFG), the lesson plan includes the following:

  • “I don’t think we have enough information to infer what it could be, do we? Tell your partner if you have an idea.” This gives students an opportunity to hear the word "infer" used correctly in context, and to participate in generating their own inference.
  • “I don’t even want to infer what was in that jar. But whatever it is, I don’t think it’s good.” This gives an additional correct context for the term "infer," encouraging students to make it a regular part of their lexicon.
  • "We can’t really predict what is yet.” Again, using an academic term conversationally encourages students to think about the word in a variety of contexts and become comfortable using it themselves.

Similarly, in Word Study, there is another section called Meaning Vocabulary that is slightly more in-depth. While many of these terms include Tier 2 words, academic vocabulary is also used. For example, during the 6th week of the school year, the teacher is given the following directions to introduce vocabulary that is used in The Constitution of the United States:

  • “Branches means divisions with specific duties. A company might have branches that help it do its work. One of the most important aspects of the Constitution is that it creates three branches of government. Let’s look at the figure on page 36 and preview the three branches.”

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
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Indicator Rating Details

The instructional materials for Grade 3 partially meet expectations 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. There is consistent time for writing instruction over the course of the year. During the differentiation block, students have as many as 30 minutes each day to complete text-based writing tasks. In addition, they have 90 45-minute blocks for which no interactive read-alouds are planned, and they will often have 15 minutes of the interactive read-aloud block. There are standards-based rubrics to support teachers’ identification of student writing ability.

The Grade 3 Teacher Manual provides an overview of the writing purpose, but little guidance is given to provide teachers with explicit plans, protocols and models for writing beyond on-demand pieces. In the Grade 3 Teacher’s manual (p. 11), it states: “You will see that there are not as many interactive read aloud lesson plans as there are shared reading lesson plans. This difference is deliberate. Nearly half of the 45-minute time segments for interactives must be reserved for process writing so that students learn to compose, revise, and edit their own writing pieces. We have not designed this portion of the curriculum. Teachers should work together to use consistent process writing procedures and language and to sequence the three writing genres (narrative, informative, and persuasive/argumentative) across the school year.”

In the materials, writing tasks are all on-demand and are text-dependent, which is a strength, however, there is no explicit support for modeling, nor are support materials for a writing process present in materials. For example, on page 54, the Teacher’s Manual states, for written responses, the teacher is to “Model for students at the beginning of the year to establish norms for length and quality." But no models are provided in the instructional materials.

Many writing prompts ask students to use the skill of summarization or to write summaries, however, models of summaries or protocols for how to write a summary are not included. Teachers would need to find or develop their own lessons, models, or protocols of how to write a summary. For example, during the First nine weeks of Shared Reading, Week 7, Constitution of the United States, the following task is included: “Reread page 14. What does the Speaker of the House do? Summarize the Speaker's responsibilities.”

Writing topics chosen are appropriate and engaging for the grade level in which they are presented and varied in type of writing students are asked to do.

Examples of the writing tasks present (which include the protocol of including text evidence) for Grade 3 students include the following:

  • In the First Nine Weeks of the Interactive Read-Aloud, Day 15 of The BFG: “I want you write a blurb for this book. A blurb is a paragraph telling a few facts about the book and trying to persuade other people to read it. Think about what it is about this book that is most interesting. Put that in your blurb. I will read you the blurb that is on the back of the book. That will give you an idea.”
  • In the Second Nine Weeks of the Interactive Read-Aloud, Day 3 of Sundiata: “On the back of this book are quotes that other people have said about the book. [Read a couple of the shorter ones aloud.] Imagine that the publisher asked you for your opinion of the book. Write two or three sentences of your own that might appear on the back of this book. Later we will display them on the board, so do your best work. Remember to give your opinion first and then your reasons.”
  • In the Third Nine Weeks of the Interactive Read-Aloud, Day 3 of Harvesting Hope “Pretend that you are a newspaper reporter. Your boss asks you to write a story about the 100-mile march. But your boss tells you, "We don't have very much space. You have to tell the story in one paragraph." Write that one paragraph for me. You have to include the most important ideas. These are who, what, why, where, when, and how?”
  • In the Fourth Nine Weeks of the Interactive Read-Aloud, Day 9 of Here Lies the Librarian: How does the author create a surprise ending for this chapter?

If teachers would like to incorporate the writing process into lessons (in order to meet the standards), they would need to generate their own materials and allocate more time than originally budgeted by the curriculum.

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
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Indicator Rating Details

The instructional materials for Grade 3 partially meet expectations 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 (W.3.7). Students engage with components of the research process over the course of the year and complete some short projects. The interactive read-alouds, support students’ building skills to combine information from illustrations, graphs, texts, and internet sources. There is some direction and guidance to teachers to allocate time for research projects (Third Grade manual, page 95).

There are minimal opportunities for students to independently complete full research projects that have gone through the process of revision. The component pieces included, however, may support students in getting ready for that kind of work. Teachers will have to identify outside materials for students to complete full research projects.

The standards ask that students engage in “short research projects that build knowledge about a topic.” Most writing prompts in the grade 3 Bookworms can be answered with one paragraph or shorter (all in response to texts), and some are followed over several days by related prompts on the same topic for the duration of the text. Research tasks are meant to be completed in class and increase in rigor over time as related to the increasing complexities of texts.

Some examples from the 3rd grade materials that are representative of the program include the following:

In the 1st nine weeks of the Interactive Reading component, students are read The Constitution of the United States. Each day after reading the text, vocabulary instruction, text structure analysis, and comprehension discussion questions provide students with supports for the writing prompts. Examples of the writing prompts are as follows:

  • Pretend you are a delegate at the Convention, and you have just finished your first day’s work. Write a letter home to your family. Tell how you felt and what the meeting was like. Make sure that you use proper letter format and you take the perspective of a delegate.
  • You will see the three parts of government that the Constitution created. Why do you think the delegates decided to do this? Make sure that you are considering their perspective
  • Reread page 9. You will see the three parts of government that the Constitution created. Why do you think the delegates decided to do this? Make sure that you are considering their perspective.

In the 2nd nine weeks, of the Interactive Read-Aloud, students read Maps and Globes. The instruction leading to a short research project is as follows:

  • Students receive an overview of technical vocabulary
  • Teacher models examining text structure using a graphic organizer and included talking points
  • Teacher asks questions and models comprehension strategies during reading (example: “Let’s compare this old map of the world with the one on our wall [or another one you can find]. Talk to your partner about some of the differences you see.”)
  • Students review the first diagram
  • Class engages in sentence composing using 2 sentences related to the text
  • Written response is assigned: “Tell the reasons why maps were so wrong a few centuries ago.”

In the 3rd nine weeks of the Shared Reading component, students read Susan B. Anthony, first with the generation of research questions to investigate after viewing video clips and then with a compare/contrast assignment to compare her life with that of Frederick Douglass. (Week 8, Days 39 and 40.) Vocabulary instruction, text structure analysis as well as comprehension discussion questions provides students with supports for writing to the following prompt.

  • How are the lives of Frederick Douglass and Susan B. Anthony similar? How are they different?

The teacher materials instruct teachers to demonstrate for students how to use the Internet to answer questions, but no other guidance or procedures are provided.

In the 4th nine weeks of the Shared Reading component, students read Twisters and Other Terrible Storms. Each day students write to a new prompt allowing for short research opportunities. For example,

  • Write a procedure for tornado formation. Use information from pages 59 and 60, but write it in your own words. (Day 4)
  • What atmospheric conditions are required for a hurricane? (Day 5)
  • How are blizzards formed? (Day 6)

Research projects that extend across texts and use various sources would need to be developed by the teacher. No research guidelines are provided for sorting evidence into provided categories, taking brief notes or gathering information from sources. (W.3.8) Teachers would need to develop organizational tools and research protocols to assist students with research projects across texts to assist in building knowledge of a topic. (W.3.7)

It is also noted that there are few opportunities to research using digital sources (W.3.8), so teachers would need to be supplement this component in order to fully support students’ success with the research standards.

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
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Indicator Rating Details

The instructional materials for Grade 3 do not fully meet expectations 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. There is some guidance for the teacher to engage a program of independent reading; for example, in the Third-grade Manual, page 56: "The most beneficial homework may be wide reading. Teachers may opt to adopt a reading log for homework, provided that books from the library are sent home with all children." It is also noted in the Third-grade Manual that students first work on their on-demand writing, and then engage in self-selected reading with a reading log (page 10).

The Literacy Block consists of three 45 minute blocks.

  • Interactive Read Aloud Block
  • Shared Reading Block
  • Differentiation Block (Students are divided into 3 groups. One group meets with the teacher while other students are engaged in writing and self-selected reading). (Teacher’s Manual, pg.8)

The Grades 3-5 Teacher's’ Manual (page 8) states that the three 45 minutes blocks offer time in the schedule for self-selected reading and indicates that students should have reading logs, but no other information or support for independent reading has been provided. Materials will need to be developed by the teacher for supports/scaffolds to foster independent reading.

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: Sun Apr 09 00:00:00 UTC 2017

Report Edition: 2017

Title ISBN Edition Publisher Year
Bookwormsreading.org Copyright: 2016 0

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.

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.

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