Alignment: Overall Summary

The instructional materials reviewed for Calvert partially meet expectations of alignment to the standards. Materials meet the expectations of providing texts worthy of students’ time and attention. Instructional materials partially meet the expectation of providing opportunities for rich and rigorous evidence-based discussions and writing about texts to build strong literacy skills. Materials meet the criteria for providing opportunities for different genres and modes of writing. Instructional materials partially provide coherently sequenced questions and tasks to support students in developing literacy skills and do not provide culminating tasks in which students can demonstrate their knowledge of a topic through integrated skills. The foundational skills included in the materials partially meet expectations.


See Rating Scale
Understanding Gateways

Alignment

|

Partially Meets Expectations

Gateway 1:

Text Quality

0
27
52
58
39
52-58
Meets Expectations
28-51
Partially Meets Expectations
0-27
Does Not Meet Expectations

Gateway 2:

Building Knowledge

0
15
28
32
20
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
N/A
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

+
-
Gateway One Details

The instructional materials reviewed for Grade 2 meet expectations for text quality for complexity and alignment to the standards. Materials include questions, tasks, and assignments that are text-based. Materials do not provide opportunities for discussion that encourage the modeling and use of academic vocabulary and partially supports student listening and speaking about what they are reading and researching. Materials meet the criteria for providing opportunities for different genres and modes of writing. Students have opportunities for evidence-based writing. Materials 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. Materials partially address foundational skills to build comprehension so that students can make connections between acquisition of foundational skills and making meaning during reading. Materials partially meet expectations for including materials, questions, and tasks that provide high-quality lessons and activities that allow for differentiation of foundational skills, so all students achieve mastery of foundational skills.

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.
18/20
+
-
Criterion Rating Details

The instructional materials reviewed for Grade 2 meet the criteria for including anchor texts that are of publishable quality, are worthy of especially careful reading and/or listening, and consider a range of student interests. Texts meet the text complexity criteria for each grade and reflect the distribution of text types and genres required by the standards. Students engage in a range and volume of reading. Materials meet the criteria that anchor texts and the series of text connected to them are accompanied by a text complexity analysis and rationale for purpose and placement in the grade level. Materials partially meet the expectations for materials supporting students’ literacy skills over the course of the school year through increasingly complex text to develop independence of grade level skills.


Indicator 1a

Anchor texts (including read-aloud texts in K-2 and shared reading texts in Grade 2 used to build knowledge and vocabulary) are of publishable quality and worthy of especially careful reading/listening and consider a range of student interests.
4/4
+
-
Indicator Rating Details

The instructional materials reviewed for Grade 2 meet the expectations for anchor texts being of publishable quality and worthy of careful reading and consider a range of student interests.

Texts are high quality, including rich language and engaging content. Accompanying illustrations are high quality as well, supporting students' understanding and comprehension of the associated text. Examples of quality texts include

  • In Unit 1, students read Rainbow Crow Brings Fire to Earth by Jeri Cipriano. In this engaging myth, Rainbow Crow brings fire to Earth which melts the snow and warms the animals.
  • In Unit 1, students read Friends Around The World by Ana Galan. This engaging multicultural text introduces students to other cultures around the world.
  • In Unit 3, students read Theodore Roosevelt: The Adventurous President by Lisa DeMauro. This TIME for Kids Biography provides a brief look at Roosevelt’s life and is written in an informational tone with captioned photographs and text features that supply additional information.
  • In Unit 3, students read Change Makers by Libby Martinez. This text uses text features, eye-catching photography and rich vocabulary to inform readers about people who are making a positive change.
  • In Unit 4, students read The Earth Dragon Awakes: The San Francisco Earthquake of 1906 by Laurence Yep. A fictional story based off historical accounts and shared between two viewpoints. This text is written in a diary/journal format.
  • In Unit 4, students read Disaster Alert by Christine Taylor-Butler. This informational text includes content specific vocabulary as well as well as age appropriate text features.
  • In Unit 5, students read Pioneers to the West by John Bliss. This text contains real photos and interesting information for students. This historical text tells how pioneers traveled out west in search of gold, land, farms, and religious freedom through the eyes of pioneer children.
  • In Unit 5, students read Going West by Jean Van Leeuwen. Realistic illustrations enhance this historical fiction which tells the tale of a family traveling out west and the hardships they endured.

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 2 meet the expectations for materials reflecting the distribution of text types and genres required by the standards.

The materials include a mix of informational and literary texts. There is a wide array of informational and literary text integrated throughout every module. Additional supplementary texts are included, resulting in a wide distribution of genres and text types as required by the standards, including biography, historical fiction, mythology, history, poetry, social studies, and science informational texts.

The following are examples of literature found within the instructional materials:

  • Unit 1, Lesson: Find Out about the Trouble At The Sandbox: Trouble At The Sandbox by Phillip Simpson
  • Unit 1, Lesson: Find Out about the Trouble At The Sandbox: Rainbow Crow Brings Fire to Earth by Jeri Cipriano
  • Unit 1, Lesson: Let’s Meet Snowshoe Hare!: Snowshoe Hare’s Winter Home by Gillian Richardson
  • Unit 1, Lesson: Reading the House on Maple Street: The House on Maple Street by Ana Galan
  • Unit 2, Lesson: Reading Alexander, Who Used to be Rich One Day: Alexander, Who Used to Be Rich Last Sunday by Judith Viorst
  • Unit 2, Lesson: Reading Alexander, Who Used to be Rich One Day: “Marty’s Summer Job” by Evan Allen
  • Unit 2. Lesson: Reading A Chair for My Mother: A Chair for My Mother by Vera B. Williams
  • Unit 2, Lesson: Reading I Wanna Iguana: I Wanna Iguana by Karen Kaufman Orloff
  • Unit 2, Lesson: Reading I Wanna Iguana: Decodable Practice Reader 8A: “Herb Helps Out” by Shanna Marcus
  • Unit 2, Lesson: Reading I Wanna Iguana: Decodable Practice Reader 8B: “Fern’s Pitch” by unknown author
  • Unit 2, Lesson: Reading I Wanna Iguana: Decodable Practice Reader 8C: “Curt’s Bike Trouble” by Amanda Hopkins
  • Unit 3, Lesson: Who Was Susan B. Anthony?: Marching with Aunt Susan by Claire Rudolf Murphy
  • Unit 3, Lesson: Making a City Green: City Green by DyAnne DiSalvo-Ryan
  • Unit 4, Lesson: The Earth Shakes in 1906: The Earth Dragon Awakes by Laurence Yep
  • Unit 4, Lesson: Discovering the Central Message of The Earth Dragon Awakes: Rainbow Crow Brings Fire to Earth by Jeri Cipriano
  • Unit 4, Lesson: Reading Seek the Sun: Seek The Sun by Phillis Gershator
  • Unit 4, Lesson: Reading Myths: Do Dragons Cause Thunder?: “I Am Boom!” by Jack Prelutsky
  • Unit 4, Lesson: Reading Myths: Do Dragons Cause Thunder?: “The Fool on the Hill” by Harry Devlin

The following are examples of informational text found within the instructional materials:

  • Unit 1, Lesson: Meet Friends Around the World: Friends Around The World by Ana Gala
  • Unit 2, Lesson: Reading Money Matters: Money Matters! by Nikki Tate
  • Unit 2, Lesson: Reading Money Matters: “Car Wash: A Family’s Fundraiser” by Tisha Hamilton
  • Unit 3, Lesson: Who Was Theodore Roosevelt?: Theodore Roosevelt: The Adventurous President by Lisa DeMauro + TIME for Kids Editors
  • Unit 3, Lesson: Who Were Some Change Makers?: Change Makers by Libby Martinez
  • Unit 4, Lesson: Reading About Disasters: Disaster Alert! by Christine Taylor-Butler
  • Unit 4, Lesson: Danger! Earthquakes: Danger! Earthquakes by Seymour Simon
  • Unit 5, Lesson: Who Was Johnny Appleseed?: John Chapman: Planter and Pioneer by Ron Fridell
  • Unit 5, Lesson: Johnny’s Timeline: Johnny Appleseed by Lola M Schaefer
  • Unit 5, Lesson: Pioneer Life: Pioneers to the West by John Bliss
  • Unit 5, Lesson: Kids Who Went West: Going West by Jean Van Leeuwen


Indicator 1c

Texts (including read-aloud texts and some shared reading texts used to build knowledge and vocabulary) have the appropriate level of complexity for the grade level according to quantitative analysis, qualitative analysis, and a relationship to their associated student task. Read-aloud texts at K-2 are above the complexity levels of what most students can read independently.
4/4
+
-
Indicator Rating Details

The instructional materials reviewed for Grade 2 meet the criteria for texts (including read-aloud texts and some shared reading texts used to build knowledge and vocabulary) have the appropriate level of complexity for the grade level according to quantitative analysis, qualitative analysis, and a relationship to their associated student task. Read-aloud texts at K-2 are above the complexity levels of what most students can read independently.

Most texts fall between the text complexity range for Grade 2. Examples of texts that support appropriate complexity include, but are not limited to, the following:

Unit 1

  • Trouble at the Sandbox by Phillip Simpson: This fictional text presents a literal meaning about a group of younger children seeking a solution when older children steal their sandbox toys. The theme about how members of a community should treat each other can be easily understood by students. The chronological text structure presents events that are clearly connected. This text has a quantitative measure of 370 Lexile, which falls below the recommendation for Grade 2.
  • Snowshoe Hare’s Winter Home by Gillian Richardson: This fictional text presents the idea of hibernation through a chronological story of snowshoe hare setting out to take a break and being told it’s time to hibernate. Snowshoe hare does not know what this means but quickly learns along with students. Illustrations support the text. This text has a quantitative measure of 530 Lexile.
  • Friends Around The World by Ana Galan: This informational text is structured with four children around the world who are e-pals sharing a series of letters and responses. Photographs, captions, a world map, and concluding sections support the text. This text has a quantitative measure of 480 Lexile.
  • The House on Maple Street by Bonnie Pryor: This literary text is presented in a chronological sequence with illustrative support. Two friends find an arrowhead and broken china cup and wonder what their neighborhood looked like 300 years prior. This text has a quantitative measure of 650 Lexile.

Unit 2

  • Alexander, Who Used to be Rich Last Sunday by Judith Viorst: This literary text shows what happens when people do not spend their money wisely to help the reader differentiate between wants and needs. The story structure changing from present to past and back to present and offers repetitive phrases, idioms, and figurative language. This text has a quantitative measure of 570 Lexile.
  • Money Matters by Nikki Tate: This informational chapter book addresses basic financial terms and concepts and some abstract concepts relating to money and economics. The text offers text features and short, simple sentences with some domain-specific words. This text has a quantitative measure of 650 Lexile.
  • A Chair for My Mother by Vera B. Williams: This literary text is about a child overcoming the difficulties faced by her family with strong themes of love and familial bonds. Illustrations may not provide support for comprehension. This text has a quantitative measure of 640 Lexile.
  • I Wanna Iguana by Karen Kaufman Orloff: This literary text offers humor and knowledge of grade-appropriate actions and desires make text-to-world and text-to-self connections central to creating meaning. The text is structured as a series of letters between a mother and child. This text has a quantitative measure of 610 Lexile.

Unit 3

  • Marching with Aunt Susan by Claire Rudolf Murphy: Marching with Aunt Susan falls in the Lexile band for Grade 2 and has a Lexile score of 650. The text structure and knowledge demands are complex as students bridge the understanding of narrative fiction based on historical events. The language is challenging at points throughout the story as content specific vocabulary is introduced (e.g., suffrage) and the addition of dialogue adds a level of complexity. The story line is clear and sequential. The illustrations support students in understanding the text and also extend the text by showing the detail of what life was like long ago.
  • City Green by DyAnne DiSalvo-Ryan: City Green falls in the Lexile band for Grade 2 and has a Lexile score of 480. The text structure and knowledge demands are average. The text follows a predictable plot with multiple, yet simple, characterizations. The text also addresses a problem with a creative and viable solution. The story line is clear and sequential. The illustrations support students in understanding the text. Students gain an understanding how they can improve their community with ingenuity, creative planning, and support from neighbors.

Unit 4

  • The Earth Dragon Awakes by Lawrence Yep: This text switches between narrative and informational text. This text is set up in chronological order with journal entries. The text does contain figurative language and content specific vocabulary. This text has a quantitative measure of 510 Lexile and falls within the grade level recommendation.
  • Disaster Alert by Christine Taylor-Butler: This is an informational text that focuses around five types of natural disasters. Text features aid in helping students assess knowledge on this topic. This text has a quantitative measure of 570 Lexile and falls within the grade level recommendation.
  • Seek the Sun by Phyllis Gershator: This text contains quite a bit of text with very little illustrations. This text is above grade level, but is supported by teacher question that involves simple “right there” questions to gauge understanding before continuing with the lessons. This text has a quantitative measure of 880 Lexile and is above the grade level recommendation.
  • Danger! Earthquakes by Seymour Simon: This informational text gives details about earthquakes. This text contains content specific vocabulary and uses text features to build knowledge on the concept. This text has a quantitative measure of 710 Lexile and falls within the grade level recommendation.

Indicator 1d

Materials support students' literacy skills (comprehension) over the course of the school year through increasingly complex text to develop independence of grade level skills (leveled readers and series of texts should be at a variety of complexity levels).
2/4
+
-
Indicator Rating Details

The instructional materials reviewed for Grade 2 partially meet the expectation that materials support students’ increasing literacy skills over the course of the school year through increasingly complex text to develop independence of grade-level skills.

Students frequently interact with texts, but there is not an observable decrease in scaffolds, or increase in student responsibility which would indicate greater independence with skills as the year progresses. While texts generally fall within appropriate text complexity grade level and stretch bands, support and scaffolds provided within the materials do not change or gradually decrease as the year progresses, to ensure that students can independently ›access and comprehend grade-level texts at the end of the year.

Some examples that demonstrate supporting students’ increasing literacy skills include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • In Unit 1, Create a Character Collage!, students read several stories and write to compare two characters and include facts for comparison. Students analyze story structure, identify how characters respond to situations, and write about how characters respond and interact.
  • In Unit 2, Making Decisions, students read several literary and informational texts about the topic of money. In the lessons that make up Unit 2, students work with their Learning Guide to learn more about the order of events in a story, identify how characters respond to events and to each other, find the central message of a story, find the main purpose of a text by looking at the details, and identify author’s purpose. Additionally, students use these skills to write a new beginning and end for a story, write dialogue between characters, and write an opinion statement. Unit 2 does not have a project, so there is no culminating activity for students to demonstrate their learning of these skills other than the unit quiz and the writing tasks.
  • In Unit 3, Biography of a Community Hero, students read several biographies and texts about change makers in history and in their everyday lives. Students read to understand how people have generated change. Students focus on text features, the essential components conducting an interview, asking and answering questions, and comparing and contrasting. Students complete a final project of writing a biography of a hero in their community.
  • In Unit 4, Reading About Dangerous Disasters, students read informative and literary texts about natural disasters. In the beginning of the unit, students use the text to focus on characters point of view. Students then look for the central message in the stories they are reading and story structure. At the end of the unit, students look at an informational and narrative text and compare and contrast the key points made about earthquakes.
  • In Unit 5, Pioneering New Ideas and New Worlds, students read several texts about pioneer life and create a final project that includes a narrative scene, informative paragraph, and an opinion piece. In this unit, students read and understand a biography, understand how text features and details support an author’s purpose, rewrite a point of view about a scene, identify the central message of a text, use details to describe characters and events, and write an opinion paragraph with supporting evidence.

Indicator 1e

Anchor texts (including read-aloud texts in K-2) and series of texts connected to them are accompanied by a text complexity analysis.
2/2
+
-
Indicator Rating Details

The instructional materials reviewed for Grade 2 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.

In the platform’s Before You Begin materials, the publisher provides a description of several text selections. The materials state, “TEXT SELECTIONS: You can find more information about some texts you will read in your course in the text selection rationales. As you select texts to read independently, find books that have similar challenges to what you are reading, as well as finding books of different genres and topics. Use your Reading Log to create a balanced reading life!” The text selection rationales are provided through a link. This link takes you to a document that includes each text title, author, text genre, student task, and both quantitative and qualitative text features. The quantitative measure is provided through a Lexile score and the qualitative feature chart gives measures such as levels of meaning, structure, language conventionality and clarity, and knowledge demands.

A text complexity analysis is provided for the anchor texts in each unit. Most texts include instructional notes, text notes, and the rationale for the purpose and placement of the anchor and support texts is embedded into the student and teacher notes for most lessons. The instructional notes include a recommendation for how students should read the text (silently and independently, listen to text, read aloud, etc.) and support students with vocabulary they will encounter in the text. At times, the teaching notes also indicate specific strengths in the texts. For example, some texts are chosen for their value in reinforcing literary techniques while others were chosen as appropriate introductions to a particular time period or topic. All texts were chosen with second grade students in mind, as well as intentional variability in genre, readability, and interest.

Instructional and text notes found in Grade 2 materials include information in the introduction box such as, “This document outlines the complexity of each anchor text as text complexity is defined in Appendix A of the Common Core State Standards, Figure 1. Quantitative complexity of the text is measured in Lexile Level for each text. Task complexity refers to how the text demands contextualized within a larger learning activity, often the unit project. Qualitative complexity descriptors, as identified by the Common Core, are listed in the table according to the factors of qualitative evaluation as listed in Appendix A. Across these three complexity domains, the reader will see that complexity monotonically increases across the course of the year.”

In Unit 1, students read the text “Trouble at the Sandbox” by Phillip Simpson. This text is read aloud and independently. The task is for students to create a collage comparing and contrasting different aspects of two characters. The complexity information provided by the publisher includes the quantitative measure of Lexile 370L and the qualitative features of:

  • Levels of Meaning: Accessible literal meaning about a group of younger children seeking a solution when older children steal their sandbox toys; more subtle theme about how members of a community should treat each other
  • Structure: Simple chronological text structure in a single story line; events are clearly connected
  • Language Conventionality and Clarity: Simple and complex sentences; occasional use of figurative language; few domain-specific expressions that may require adult intervention
  • Knowledge Demands: Understanding of polite behavior; roles of teachers and students in a school setting

In Unit 1, students read the text Friends Around The World by Ana Galan. This text is read aloud and independently. The task is for students to create a collage comparing and contrasting different aspects of two characters. The complexity information provided by the publisher includes the quantitative measure of Lexile 480L and the qualitative features of:

  • Levels of Meaning: Accessible literal series of letters between four children around the world
  • Structure: Introduction; letters from each e-pal and their responses; photographs, captions, world map; concluding section
  • Language Conventionality and Clarity: Words from various cultures; geographic names
  • Knowledge Demands: Many countries around the world encourage the practice of being a pen pal.

In Unit 3, students read the text “Theodore Roosevelt: The Adventurous President” by Lisa DeMauro. The task associated with this text is to interview and write a biography with text features about a community leader. This text is read aloud as well as independently. The complexity information provided by the publisher includes the quantitative measure of Lexile 570L and the qualitative features of:

  • Levels of Meaning: Biography with detailed information about a broad range of subjects; themes of fairness and courage
  • Structure: Chronological (excluding first chapter); photos with captions; sidebars with fun facts; timeline
  • Language Conventionality and Clarity: Multiple-meaning words; using root words; implications
  • Knowledge Demands: Conserving nature

In Unit 3, students read the text “Change Makers” by Libby Martinez. The task associated with this text is to interview and write a biography with text features about a community leader. This text is read aloud as well as independently. The complexity information provided by the publisher includes the quantitative measure of Lexile 570L and the qualitative features of:

  • Levels of Meaning: Accessible information about kids making the world a better place; specific community projects that involve young people
  • Structure: Table of contents; introduction; sections devoted to a singular topic; 4-step process; glossary support
  • Language Conventionality and Clarity: Complex vocabulary; statistical data; geographical names
  • Knowledge Demands: Understanding of West African cultures, orangutans and rain forests, hurricanes, community gardens, and murals

In Unit 5, students read the text “John Chapman: Planter and Pioneer” by Ron Fridell. This text is read aloud and independently. The task for the reader is to write a multi-purpose composition (narrative, explanatory, and argumentative) about life on the frontier. The complexity information provided by the publisher includes the quantitative measure of Lexile 550L and the qualitative features of:

  • Levels of Meaning: Accessible, visually supported informational text about John Chapman (Johnny Appleseed); anecdotes, opinions, and reasons that Appleseed is famous, beloved, and the subject of legend
  • Structure: Introduction: Mostly chronological structure; information organized under headings
  • Language Conventionality and Clarity: Some historical and agricultural vocabulary.
  • Knowledge Demands: Understanding of apples and trees; the concept of living in the “great outdoors”

In Unit 5, students read the text “Pioneers To The West” by John Bliss. This text is read aloud and independently. The task for the reader is to write a multi-purpose composition (narrative, explanatory, and argumentative) about life on the frontier. The complexity information provided by the publisher includes the quantitative measure of Lexile 770L and the qualitative features of:

  • Levels of Meaning: Nonfiction accounts of real people faced with challenges while settling in the West
  • Structure: Broken into chapters with additional information provided in text boxes
  • Language Conventionality and Clarity: Academic language presented with definitions in context
  • Knowledge Demands: Understanding of U.S. history and geography (territories and Native American tribes)

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
+
-
Indicator Rating Details

The instructional materials reviewed for Grade 2 meet the criteria that support materials for the core text(s) provide opportunities for students to engage in a range and volume of reading to support their reading at grade level by the end of the school year.

The stories, decodable readers, and Sleuth texts read and reread in lessons are underlined and hyperlinked. Learners can independently read text or enable the audio read-aloud capability by clicking on the hippo icon. Poems can be accessed through the text collection link. Also, students keep a Reading Log and independently read two to three books per week, in addition to the books in their English Language Course.

Examples include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • In Unit 1, Creating A Character Collage!, students read several texts about characters and why they do what they do. The texts include the following: Trouble At The Sandbox, Snowshoe Hare’s Winter Home, Friends Around The World, and The House on Maple Street. The poems include the following: “Rainbow Crow Brings Fire To Earth” and “Dog Dreams.” The decodable practice readers include the following: "Gus," "The Van," "Ike and Ice," "We Can Do A Lot," "On Stage," "Fran and Flip,""Lifting," "Stan and Bev," and "Showing and Telling." The Sleuth text is a “A Birthday Surprise.”
  • In Unit 2, Making Decisions, students read several texts including: Alexander, Who Used to Be Rich Last Sunday, I’ll Trade You, Marty’s Summer Job, A Chair for My Mother, More Than Cash Dispensers, Earning Money My Own Way, Money Matters!, Car Wash: A Family’s Fundraiser, and I Wanna Iguana. The decodable practice readers include the following: "Gus," "Chet Checks," "Farm Chores," "Bart’s Chore," "Let’s Wish," "Herb Helps Out," "Fern’s Pitch," and "Curt’s Bike Trouble."
  • In Unit 3, Biography of a Community Hero, students listen to, independently read, and interact with a variety of biographical and informational texts about the following historical figures: Theodore Roosevelt, Abraham Lincoln, Susan B. Anthony, Alexander Graham Bell, and about everyday people who make a difference in their community. Students have the opportunity to either read texts independently or read texts with their Learning Guide, including: Theodore Roosevelt: The Adventurous President (chapter book), Inventing the Telephone, Marching with Aunt Susan, Nana’s Herb Garden, Change Makers, America’s Birthday, City Green, and a story from Sleuth “Josh Gibson: Home Run King.” Students also have the opportunity to read poems during the unit, including: “Lincoln” and “Unfair.” Students also read the following decodable texts to their Learning Guide: "Things to Do," "Our Reading Party," "Lee Rakes," and "Sam’s Stroll."
  • In Unit 4, Reading About Dangerous Disasters, students read informational texts about disasters. Texts are read independently or with the Learning Guide. Many texts, or sections of texts, are reread throughout a lesson. The texts include the following: The Earth Dragon Awakes (historical fiction), “Bill’s Birthday,” Blizzard, "A Backyard Birthday,” Rainbow Crow Brings Fire to Earth, Seek The Sun, “Mike’s Shirt,” “I Am Boom!” (poem), Disaster Alert!, “The Lunch Table,” “The Maple Tree,” Moonscape: The Surface of the Moon, “A Good Book,” and “Curtis the Cowboy Cook” from Sleuth.
  • In Unit 5, Pioneering New Ideas and New Worlds, students read about pioneer life. The texts include: John Chapman: Planter and Pioneer, A Cowboy’s Life, Johnny Appleseed, Pioneers to the West, Going West, and A Visit to the Ranch. The decodable practice readers include the following: "Sally’s New Puppy," "New Clues," "In The Woods," "An Unhappy Spaceman," "Writing Letters," "Camp Gnome,""Meet Tom Lamb," and “From Seed to Fruit” from Sleuth.

Criterion 1g - 1n

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

The instructional materials reviewed for Grade 2 partially meet the criteria for providing opportunities for rich and rigorous evidence-based discussions and writing about texts to build strong literacy skills. Materials meet expectations that most questions, tasks, and assignments are text-based, requiring students to engage with the text directly. Materials partially met the expectation that materials contain sets of high-quality sequences of text-dependent questions and tasks build to a culminating task that integrates skills. Materials do not provide opportunities for discussion that encourage the modeling and use of academic vocabulary and partially supports student listening and speaking about what they are reading and researching. Materials meet the criteria for providing opportunities for different genres and modes of writing. Students have opportunities for evidence-based writing. Materials partially meet the expectations for materials including explicit instruction of the grammar and conventions standards for the grade level as applied in increasingly sophisticated contexts, with opportunities for application both in and out of context.

Indicator 1g

Most questions, tasks, and assignments are text-based, 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 materials reviewed for Grade 2 meet the criteria that most questions, tasks, and assignments are text-based, 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).

Text-dependent questions and tasks are found throughout the parts of each unit. The questions are prompted prior to a reading to set the purpose of reading, and discussed with the Learning Guide after learning has taken place, or as part of a task in writing responses in the English Language Arts Journal. Students use text evidence to support their answer and make comparisons with other texts. Each unit ends with a unit quiz which requires students to read passages and answer text dependent questions.

Examples of text-based questions, assignments, and tasks include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • In Unit 1, Lesson: Understanding Characters, Part 1, students finish reading Trouble at the Sandbox. Students work on character traits and characters’ point of view. Students are asked to answer various questions in their English Language Arts notebook, including, “When the big boys come up to Theo, Izzy, and Josh at the sandbox again, what words in the text help you better understand Theo’s character and point of view?”
  • In Unit 2, Lesson: Reading Alexander, Who Used to be Rich One Day, Part 2, students learn about how illustrations help readers understand the story better. Students are then prompted, “Talk about the picture on p. 5 with your Learning Guide. Tell how the illustration shows Alexander's feelings. Then, find words in the text that connect to the illustration. Find two or three more places where the pictures show Alexander’s feelings.”
  • In Unit 4, Lesson: Reading Myths: Do Dragons Cause Thunder?, Part 3, students compare the story structure between two texts. After rereading the ending of The Earth Dragon Awakes and Seek the Sun the students fills out a T-chart comparing the conclusions of the texts. After labeling the T-Chart, students are prompted, “Write details about each story’s conclusion in the correct column.”
  • In Unit 4, Unit Quiz: Planting For the Future, Question 2, students read the passage “Max and Bud.” After students read the passage, they are asked, “Where did Bud have a bath?”
  • In Unit 5, Lesson: Pioneer Life, Part 5, the students look at the importance of historical events within a text. The students compare people in the text to better see how they are connected to important events. The students are asked to label the two sides of the Venn diagram and then prompted, “Put details about the two men under their names. If a detail is true of both men, put it in the middle section.”

Indicator 1h

Materials contain sets of high-quality sequences of text-based questions with activities that build to a culminating task which integrates skills to demonstrate understanding (as appropriate, may be drawing, dictating, writing, speaking, or a combination).
1/2
+
-
Indicator Rating Details

The instructional materials reviewed for Grade 2 partially meet the criteria for materials containing sets of high-quality sequences of text-based questions with activities that build to a culminating task which integrates skills to demonstrate understanding (as appropriate, may be drawing, dictating, writing, speaking, or a combination).

The culminating task for each unit is found at the end of each unit and can be identified as the Show section of the materials. Tasks provide students the opportunity to demonstrate their knowledge through a combination of integrated skills including reading, writing, drawing, and speaking and listening while allowing for a variety of project choices throughout the year. In Grade 2, Units 1, 3, and 5 are constructed around a core project idea or culminating task. Each lesson in Units 1, 3, and 5 uses the text to engage students in activities to prepare them for completion of the project. While projects are included in Units 1, 3, and 5, students do not necessarily need to use the texts to complete the projects.

Evidence of opportunities that build to a culminating task include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • In Unit 3, Biography of a Community Hero, students write a biography about one person in their community who is a leader. Students will need to create questions, interview the person, record their answers, and finally write an informative piece about that person’s life. A project rubric is included. This project could be completed without participating in the learning of the unit.
  • In Unit 5, Pioneering New Ideas and New Worlds, students write about three different topics related to Pioneer Life. Their project needs to include a narrative scene, an informative paragraph, and an opinion piece. A project rubric is provided.
    • In Unit 5, Lesson: Who Was Johnny Appleseed, Part 4, students reread the text John Chapman: Planter and Pioneer and are asked to, “Write a paragraph answering this question, ‘Was Johnny Appleseed a hero?’ You should begin by stating your opinion. Remember to support your opinion with reasons. Use linking words to connect your opinion and your reasons."
    • In Unit 5, Lesson: Johnny’s Timeline, Part 3, students reread the text Johnny Appleseed and are told, “The message on John Chapman’s gravestone reads ‘He lived for others.’ Do you agree or disagree with this statement? Give your opinion and support it with reasons.”
    • In Unit 5, Lesson: Pioneer Life, Part 6, students reread the text Pioneers to the West and are asked to, “Look at the picture on page 7. It shows people walking along the Mormon Trail. Write a description of the painting in your ELA Journal. Then, tell how the image adds to the text or helps the reader.”

Indicator 1i

Materials provide frequent opportunities and protocols for evidence-based discussions (small group, peer-to-peer, whole class) that encourage the modeling and use of academic vocabulary and syntax.
0/2
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Indicator Rating Details

The instructional materials reviewed for Grade 2 do not 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.

The materials provide occasional opportunities for students to share with small groups or peers online, but these opportunities are inconsistent. Although each lesson part refers students to discuss with their Learning Guide, there is limited instruction to support students’ mastery of listening and speaking skills. Discussions focus on students’ experience with a topic or reading skill, but use of academic vocabulary and syntax is not addressed. Students discuss their learning with the Learning Guide individually.

Teachers are provided direction on the answers to the questions but do not receive adequate guidance, support, or protocols for hosting discussions. Speaking, listening, and discussion protocols are identified in the Before You Begin section of the materials. This speaking and listening resource gives some sentence stems but does not provide a clear expectation of when these protocols should be used throughout the program. The protocols are rarely referenced in materials. Discussion formats are not varied throughout the course of the year.

Examples include, but are not limited to, the following:

In the Before You Begin section, under Discussions, there is a link for speaking and listening resources. The speaking and listening resource includes a speaking guide, listening guide, and discussion protocols.

Under the Speaking Guide section, sentence stems are provided. Examples include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • "I agree/disagree with you when you said…
  • This evidence from the text made me think…"
  • In the Unit 1 Project, Create a Character Collage, student directions state, “Think about what you saw in the video. What kind of words describe your favorite character? What traits does he or she have? Draw your favorite character. Tell your Learning Guide two traits of your favorite character and show your picture.” The Teaching Notes state, “If necessary, have your student tell you what to type into the discussion board. Later, come back to the page and help your student read and reply to others’ contributions.”
  • In the Unit 5 Project, Pioneering New Ideas and New Worlds, The Teaching Notes state, “Encourage your student to come up with ideas from previous experiences. These experiences may be vague, or even unrelated to pioneer life, such as cowboys. The purpose of this activity is to get students thinking about the way of life that might be represented in these texts. If necessary, have your student tell you what to type into the discussion board. Later, come back to the page and help your student read and reply to others’ contributions."

Examples under Discussion Protocols include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • "Have a one-to-one discussion with your student in which he or she explains his or her thinking while you ask probing question.
  • Your student can explain learning and concepts to someone who is not involved with his or her schoolwork, such as a sibling, relative, or friend"

Indicator 1j

Materials support students' listening and speaking about what they are reading (or read aloud) and researching (shared projects) with relevant follow-up questions and supports.
1/2
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Indicator Rating Details

The instructional materials reviewed for Grade 2 partially meet the criteria for materials supporting students’ listening and speaking about what they are reading (or read aloud) and researching (shared projects) with relevant follow-up questions and supports.

The Grade 2 materials include some opportunities for students to listen and speak about what they are reading. These opportunities occur as students engage with the text used in a lesson, either through reading or read-aloud. Specific tasks occur in the LEARN Card and vary between asking the student to discuss answers to the questions with the Learning Guide and/or record responses in their English Language Arts Journal.

Throughout each unit, students are prompted with questions and/or activities that they are to complete with their Learning Guide. The materials prompt the Learning Guide to have the student go back into the text to support their evidence, look at pictures or text features, or to connect grammar skills with text. Students are encouraged to click on the Collaboration button throughout their learning to connect with other students who are using the materials.

Examples include but are not limited to:

  • In Unit 1, Lesson: Let’s Meet Snowshoe Hare, Part 1, the student directions state, “Talk about what you read with your Learning Guide. Make a list of the characters. Then, next to each character’s name, write how that character is preparing for winter. Write the list in your ELA Journal.” The platform provides the Learning Guide with answers but no other follow-up guidance or supports are provided.
  • In Unit 2, Lesson: Reading A Chair for My Mother, Part 2, students read A Chair for My Mother. Students then discuss the characters’ responses with their Learning Guide and answer the following questions: “Because of the fire, the family needs a new chair. How does Mama respond to not having a comfortable chair or a sofa? How does the family respond to the challenge of buying a new chair?” The Teaching Notes provide answers for the questions, but no expectation or specific protocol for the discussion.
  • In Unit 3, Lesson: Who Was Theodore Roosevelt, Part 1, students are instructed to look at Chapter 2 of the text, answer the following questions ,and discuss them with their Learning Guide, “How does the sidebar add to your understanding of Teddy Roosevelt’s interest in animals? How does the subheading on p. 8 help you understand what the text in this section will be about?” The platform provides the Learning Guide with answers, but no other follow-up guidance or supports are provided.
  • In Unit 4, Lesson: Reading About Disasters, Part 5, students read the chapter “Bushfires” in the text Disaster Alert! Students create a summary based on the main idea and key details from the text. The prompt states, “Talk to your Learning Guide about the main ideas in the text. Choose a main idea, then look for key details in the text, pictures, and diagrams that tell about the main idea.” The Teaching Notes provide guiding questions for the Learning Guide, but do not have clear expectations or protocol for any form of discussion.
  • In Unit 5, Lesson: Johnny’s Timeline, Part 1, the student directions state, “Talk about your answers to these questions with your Learning Guide. What does the arrow on the bottom of page 53 show? How does the image on page 54 relate to what is in the timeline? What text feature on page 65 tells about the picture on page 64?” The Learning Guide is provided an answer key, but no protocol on how to facilitate a discussion.

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
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Indicator Rating Details

The materials reviewed for Grade 2 meet the criteria for materials including a mix of on-demand and process writing grade-appropriate writing (e.g. grade-appropriate revision and editing) and short, focused projects, incorporating digital resources where appropriate.

Students have a number of opportunities for on-demand and process writing, as well as short, focused projects completed through a variety of instructional tasks. Many of the short, focused projects are a piece of a larger compilation at the end of a unit or a section of the unit. To demonstrate understanding of the text, students write on-demand and draw pictures to show meaning or in response to text through instructional tasks heavily throughout each unit. In the latter part of each unit, the writing tasks become more complex and demand more content or evidence to support the rationale. Writing assignments are integrated with the reading components of the program. Opportunities for editing and revising of written content is embedded within the lesson and often associated with a literature task, such as finding details in text and then adding details into writing. Additionally, the curriculum provides rubrics to depict criteria. The curriculum also uses a variety of digital resources with interactive components for students to demonstrate knowledge.

Opportunities for on-demand writing include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • In Unit 1, Lesson: Understanding Characters, Part 1, students are asked to write after reading Chapter 5 of Trouble at the Sandbox. The directions state, “Now you will rewrite a scene. Think about the sandbox in the story. Draw picture of the scene when the big boys come to the sandbox and take the trucks again. Write a paragraph or two that tells the story of the scene. Add descriptive words so your reader can really picture what is happening in the scene. Describe how the characters react to what happens so your reader can understand and how the characters feel.”
  • In Unit 2, Lesson: Reading Alexander, Who Used to be Rich Last Sunday, Part 3, students read a section of Alexander, Who Used to be Rich Last Sunday. The on-demand writing prompt states, “Look at the picture on the page. You will write narrative description sentences about this picture. A narrative description tells what characters, do, think, or feel.” The students are then given steps to follow to help them complete their narrative description.
  • In Unit 3, Lesson: Who Were Some of the Change Makers, Part 2, students read the chapter of Change Makers about Madison Vorva and Rhiannon Tomtishen. When students are finished they write a paragraph that summarizes why Madison and Rhiannon wanted to make a change and what change they made.
  • In Unit 4, Lesson: The Earth Shakes in 1906, Part 1, the LEARN card directions state, “You will write a narrative about Henry and Chin’s points of view about their parents. Look for clues about their points of view on pages 1–16. Then, write a scene where Henry and Chin talk about their points of view about their parents. Whatever you write, be sure to use actions, thoughts, and feelings to show the boys’ points of view. Write your scene in your English Language Arts Journal.”
  • In Unit 5, Lesson: Who Was Johnny Appleseed, Part 2, students look at the text and pictures on pages 7–10 of John Chapman: Planter and Pioneer. Then students write a paragraph that tells an opinion about why they think the book ties to the unit title: "Pioneering New Ideas and New Worlds." Students must support their opinion with reasons and evidence from the pages they have read so far.

Opportunities for process writing include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • For the Unit 3 Project, Biography of a Community Hero, students read several stories in the unit about important people and their contributions. Students then find a community hero to interview and write a biography. Their biography must include: a clear introduction that says why the person is important, at least three sections (early life, schooling and training, and career and achievements), at least one quote from the person, a table of contents, a picture of the person with a caption, and section headings.
  • In Unit 4, Lesson: Danger! Earthquakes, Part 3, students begin a process writing assignment. Students are provided the following prompt, “You will choose a natural disaster and write an informative paragraph. You will do research to find out the answers to who, what, when, where, and why. Your Learning Guide will help to find answers as you research your topic. Take notes as you read newspaper articles to find the answers to your questions.”
  • In Unit 5, Lesson: Show: Heading For the Wild West, Part 1: students have written their opinion piece about pioneer life, an information piece about pioneers/events, and a narrative about John Chapman’s life. Student directions in Part 1 state, “Now you will put them all together. You will create a multi-purpose piece. A multi-purpose piece means you have written for three different purposes about one topic. By putting your pieces together, you will create a larger writing piece that is interesting to read! You will illustrate your piece and publish it. Your job today is to revise your writing.”

Indicator 1l

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

The instructional materials reviewed for Grade 2 meet the criteria for materials providing opportunities for students to address different text types of writing (year long) that reflect the distribution required by the standards.

Students to engage in writing tasks across the text types required of the standards. Students use a combination of drawing, dictating, and writing, to compose many types of writing, including opinion, informational and narrative, while utilizing the writing process. There is a balance of short writing pieces which build up to longer writing pieces. Longer writing tasks are completed over the course of a unit or lesson part. Writing opportunities are scaffolded with Learning Guide supports, drawing about the text, graphic organizers to pull evidence from texts, and working on shorter pieces over the course of time to revise and edit a final piece. Rubrics are included with each larger writing piece, providing the criteria for grading. In some instances, examples are shared. Students have the opportunity to create their writing digitally and upload it to the platform or by hand and upload a picture of their work.

Examples of writing prompts that address the different text types of writing and reflect the distribution required by the standards include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • In Unit 1, Lesson: Let’s Meet Snowshoe Hare!, Part 2, Narrative, students write in their English Language Arts Journal about a time that something happened to them. Suggested prompts are: "what happened on your last birthday, a time you went to a new place, something fun you did with a friend recently, or an exciting day you shared with your family." Students are required to write about at least three things that happened during this time and to use sequence words.
  • In Unit 1, Create A Character Project, Informative/Explanatory, students have compared and contrasted fictional and nonfiction texts throughout the unit. Students are instructed to, “First, you will write an informative paragraph about each character using facts from the character’s story. Then, you will write a compare and contrast paragraph about the characters. Finally, you will complete your Venn diagram collage with facts, details, and images.”
  • In Unit 2, Lesson: Reading I Wanna Iguana, Part 4, Opinion, students write an opinion piece based off what they read in I Wanna Iguana. The prompt states, “Now it is time to plan your own opinion. Decide whether you agree with Alex’s or Mom’s point of view about having an iguana as a pet. In your English Language Arts Journal, plan your opinion paragraph.”
  • In Unit 2, Lesson: What Lesson Did Alexander Learn?, Part 1, Narrative, the prompt says, “Think about the ending of Alexander, Who Used to Be Rich Last Sunday. Think about how you can be creative and write a new ending to the story. Now decide which characters will be in your new ending. Make sure the ending follows from the beginning and middle and provides a satisfying closure.”
  • In Unit 3, Lesson: Who Was Theodore Roosevelt?, Part 4, Opinion, students write their opinion on whether they believe Teddy was a creator of ideas or a person who made a difference in our country. The materials state that their opinion writing must include: "A topic sentence that clearly states your opinion, at least two facts, examples, or details that give support to your opinion, and concluding sentence that ties it all together"
  • In Unit 3, Lesson: Show: Publish Your Biography!, Part 2, Informative/Explanatory, students have worked throughout Unit 3 to learn about the structure of a biography. They have added text features into their writing piece and are at the final stage to make any last minute adjustments and will submit their project digitally, but have the choice of creating it by hand and submitting pictures of the project, or by uploading or copying/pasting their project into the assessment box. A four point rubric is attached with the criteria: introduction, structure, interview, text features, and revising/editing.
  • In Unit 3 Project: Biography of a Community Hero, Informative/Explanatory, students interview an important person in their community and write a biography including information about their early life, schooling, and achievements.
  • In In Unit 4, Lesson: Reading About Disasters, Part 3, Informative/Explanatory, students begin writing an informative piece. The prompt states, “Today you will research and write about a different type of natural disaster. You can choose a natural disaster you read about and would like to learn more about.” Students are given a list of natural disasters to choose from and are provided some tips to help them with their research before they begin writing their informative piece.
  • In Unit 5, Lesson: Who Was Johnny Appleseed?, Part 1, Opinion, students write their opinion on Johnny Chapman and defend their opinion on whether or not he was helping the country when he planted the apple trees. Their opinion must include: a clearly stated main topic and opinion, reasons supported by details, facts, and words from a text, a structure that groups information in a way that makes sense, words and phrases that link reasons to the writer’s opinion, and a strong ending statement that is connected to the opinion.
  • In Unit 5, Lesson: Pioneer Life, Part 1, Narrative, students have read Pioneers to the West. They are instructed to look back at the text to find interesting details about pioneer life. Then, write a story about pioneer life. Their story must include a beginning, middle, and end and be written in their English Language Arts Journal.

Indicator 1m

Materials include regular opportunities for evidence-based writing to support recall of information, opinions with reasons, and relevant information appropriate for the grade level.
2/2
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Indicator Rating Details

The materials reviewed for Grade 2 meet the criteria for materials including regular opportunities for evidence-based writing to support recall of information, opinions with reasons, and relevant information appropriate for the grade level.

Materials include regular opportunities for evidence-based writing. The materials require students to justify their answers with evidence from the text or illustrations from the text when appropriate, often discussing their answers with the Learning Guide prior to writing. As students move through the units and parts of units, the tasks become more complex and build upon previous tasks that were completed. Students are engaged in tasks that require writing with evidence from the text or using the text as a mentor text to mimic the craft. Materials provide opportunities for students to recall information from the text by discussing it with their Learning Guide or organizing their thoughts on purposeful graphic organizers. Examples include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • In the Unit 1, Project, Create A Character Collage, students read several stories in the unit and analyze the different characters. For the project students compare and contrast two characters from the unit. The project directions state, “Your student will create a Venn diagram collage. He or she will use pictures, drawings, sentences and/or paragraphs, and images that represent the characters. Your student will place the material in the correct part of the Venn diagram. It can be created as a poster or on an online platform.”
  • In Unit 2, Lesson: Reading Alexander, Who Used to be Rich One Day, Part 4, the LEARN card directions state, “You have practiced finding out about the feelings and reactions of characters. Look back at what you wrote about Alexander and his feelings. Now read Chapter 1 of Marty’s Summer Job. Then write answers to these questions about Marty:
    • How does the illustration on page 3 show Marty’s feelings? Why does he feel this way?
    • How does Marty react to the job possibility his mother suggests?
    • How does the illustration on page 9 show Marty’s feelings?"
  • Unit 3, Lesson: Who Was Susan B. Anthony?, Part 2; In a previous part, students wrote questions they had about Susan B. Anthony. Students use a list of resources that they created in a previous part to find answers to the questions by locating factual information from the resources. Once they have all of the facts they need to answer the questions, students write a paragraph including an introduction, a body, and a conclusion.
  • In Unit 4, Lesson: Danger! Earthquakes, Part 1, the LEARN card directions state, “You’ve found the main topic and key details in Danger! Earthquakes. Now you will write to compare using key ideas and details. Writers support their main topic with facts and details. These facts and details help readers understand the most important ideas. You will write an informative paragraph using key details from the text and facts you find in your own research."
  • Unit 5, Lesson: Heading For the Wild West, Part 1: Students have previously written their opinion piece about pioneer life, an information piece about pioneers/events, and a narrative about John Chapman’s life. Student directions state, “Now you will put them all together. You will create a multi-purpose piece. A multi-purpose piece means you have written for three different purposes about one topic. By putting your pieces together, you will create a larger writing piece that is interesting to read! You will illustrate your piece and publish it. Your job today is to revise your writing.”
  • In Unit 5, Lesson: Kids Who Went West, Part 3, students read the text Going West with a focus on, “What details did the author include to tell you that winter is coming? What details in the story give you evidence about the family’s life on the prairie?” Students use a Key Events Chart to record events from Going West that have happened in the beginning, middle, and end of the story. Students prepare to write a short narrative about a child pioneer by retelling the story of Hannah from Going West including key details from the story about her life on the prairie.

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
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Indicator Rating Details

The materials reviewed for Grade 2 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.

The materials provide instruction on the grammar and convention standards for Grade 2. However, much of the instruction is incidental, rather than explicit. Students do not get the opportunity to expand on their understanding of collective nouns and irregular plural nouns. There are missed opportunities for students expand on their understanding of plural nouns and collective nouns as this is touched upon once in the Units 1 and 2. In Units 3 and 4, there is no instruction of frequently irregular plural nouns, reflexive pronouns, or commas/apostrophes. There are few opportunities for explicit instruction of collective nouns and irregular verbs.

Materials include limited opportunities for students to demonstrate application of skills both in and out of context. However, practice is not frequent. Examples include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • Students have opportunities to use collective nouns. For example: 
    • In Unit 1, Lesson: Understanding Characters, Part 1, students practice identifying collective nouns, "Write a list of collective nouns on the board. Have your student describe what each collective noun describes and use it in a sentence."
  • Students have opportunities to form and use the past tense of frequently occurring regular verbs. For example:
    • In Unit 4, Lesson: Reading Seek the Sun, Part 4, students learn about the irregular past tense verbs came, dug, got, built, grew, stood, and told. Students also practice writing their own sentence that contains an irregular past tense verb.
  • Students have opportunities to use adjectives and adverbs, and choose between them depending on what is to be modified. For example: 
    • In Unit 1, Lesson: Meet Friends From Around The World, Part 1, students use adjectives in their writing and learn how an adjective describes a noun.
    • In Unit 1, Lesson: Comparing and Contrasting Life Around the World, Part 1, after learning about what an adverb is, students practice writing their own sentences that contain adverbs. The materials state, "Ask your student to write a few simple sentences. Then, have him or her add an adverb to make the sentence more interesting. For example: I ran. I ran quickly."
  • Students have opportunities to produce, expand, and rearrange complete simple and compound sentences. For example: 
    • In Unit 2, Lesson: Comparing Alexander and a Chair for My Mother, Part 3, the Learning Guide explains the differences between compound and simple sentences to the student. The student then practices writing a compound sentence using and or but.
  • Students have opportunities to hapitalize holidays, product names, and geographic names. For example:
    • In Unit 1, Lesson: Find Out about the Trouble at the Sandbox, Part 5, the Learning Guide tells the student, "Names, months, holidays, and specific locations are proper nouns. These all begin with a capital letter." Students then practice identifying and write some of their own sentences that contain proper nouns.
  • Students have opportunities to use commas in greetings and closings of letters. For example: 
    • In Unit 2, Lesson: I Wanna Iguana, Part 2, students learn how to use commas in the greeting and closing of a letter. Students also practice writing their own letter.
  • Students have opportunities to use an apostrophe to form contractions and frequently occurring possessives. For example:
    • In Unit 2, Lesson: Reading Alexander, Who Used to be Rich Last Sunday, Part 3, students learn the purpose of apostrophes to form contractions and how to identify them in sentences.
    • In Unit 5, Lesson: Who Was Johnny Appleseed?, Part 1, students learn about irregular, plural, and possessive nouns. Students practice changing phrases such as “the lunches of my friends” into a possessive noun using an apostrophe.
  • Students have opportunities to generalize learned spelling patterns when writing words. For example:
    • In Unit 1, Lesson: Let’s Meet Snowshoe Hare!, Part 1, students learn about irregular past tense verbs such as: said, had, did, and was. The materials state, "Said is past tense of say. The spelling of the whole word changes instead of adding -ed to the end. Here are some other irregular verbs: Had is the past tense of have. Did is the past tense of do. Was is the past tense of be. None of these verbs follow the usual pattern of adding -ed to the end to make it past tense."
    • In Unit 2, Lesson: What Lessons Did Alexander Learn?, Part 1, students practice saying, spelling and writing the high frequency words went, before, much, do, this, far, and more.
  • Students have opportunities to consult reference materials, including beginning dictionaries, as needed to check and correct spellings. For example: 
    • In Unit 2, Lesson: What Lesson Did Alexander Learn?, Part 4, students are prompted to go back and check their writing assignment. They are then told by the Learning Guide to look up any of the words they do not think are spelled correctly.
    • In Unit 4, Lesson: Reading Seek the Sun, Part 3, students practice using a dictionary to find the meanings of unknown words. The materials state, "Provide a dictionary or supervise as your student uses an online dictionary to find the meanings of the unfamiliar words. Have your student tell you a sentence with each word to check his or her understanding of the words’ meanings"

Criterion 1o - 1t

Materials in reading, writing, speaking, listening, and language targeted to support foundational reading development are aligned to the standards.
10/22
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Criterion Rating Details

The instructional materials reviewed for Grade 2 partially meet the expectation that materials, questions, and tasks directly teach foundational skills to build reading acquisition by providing systematic and explicit instruction in phonics that demonstrates a transparent and research-based progression for application both in and out of context. Materials meet the expectation that materials, questions, and tasks provide explicit instruction for and regular practice in structures and features of text. Materials partially meet the criteria for instructional opportunities are frequently built into the materials for students to practice and gain decoding automaticity and sight-based recognition of high-frequency words. Materials partially meet expectations that materials, questions, and tasks providing systematic and explicit instruction in and practice of word recognition and analysis skills in a research-based progression in connected text and tasks. Materials partially meet the criteria for supporting ongoing and frequent assessment to determine student mastery and inform meaningful differentiation of foundational skills, including a clear and specific protocol as to how students performing below standard on these assessments will be supported. Materials partially meet the expectation that materials, questions, and tasks provide high-quality lessons and activities that allow for differentiation of foundational skills, so all students achieve mastery of foundational skills.

Indicator 1o

Materials, questions, and tasks directly teach foundational skills to build reading acquisition by providing systematic and explicit instruction in the alphabetic principle, letter-sound relations, phonemic awareness, phonological awareness (K-1), and phonics (K-2) that demonstrate a transparent and research-based progression with opportunities for application both in and out of context.
2/4
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Indicator Rating Details

The materials reviewed for Grade 2 partially meet the criteria for materials, questions, and tasks directly teach foundational skills to build reading acquisition by providing systematic and explicit instruction in the alphabetic principle, letter-sound relationships, phonemic awareness, and phonological awareness (K-1), and phonics (K-2) that demonstrate a transparent and research-based progression for application both in and out of context.

The Grade 2 materials do provide practice phonics that demonstrate a transparent and research-based progression for application both in and out of context. However, the level of practice and application is not frequent or adequate. The materials do not provide enough opportunities for the students to practice or apply the skills that they are learning. The materials do address some skills, such as uppercase letters and high-frequency words, which are not in the Grade 2 standards. Suffixes are taught a few times over the course of the school year. However, evidence is lacking in the instruction on spelling-sound relationship on common words, decoding two syllable words with long vowels, or prefix instruction.

In addition, there is not a systematic and explicit way of teaching the skills. Each part (one-day lesson) has a student section and a Learning Guide section. Many “parts” do not address foundational skills at all, including: Unit 1, Parts 1, 2, and 5 in the Lesson: Find Out about the Trouble at the Sandbox; Unit 1, Parts 1 and 4 in Characters; Unit 3, Parts 1-4 in Lesson: Who Was Theodore Roosevelt?, and Parts 1, 3, and 4 in Lesson: Learning About Roosevelt and Lincoln, and all of Unit 4.

Lessons and activities provide students some opportunities to learn grade-level phonics skills while decoding words (e.g. distinguish long and short vowel sounds, apply spelling-sound relationship on common words, decode two syllable words with long vowels). Examples include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • Unit 1, Lesson: Find Out about the Trouble at the Sandbox, provides a decodable text in Parts 2 and 3 about short vowels. Parts 2 and 3, have a quick practice of high frequency words. Neither of these are Grade 2 standards. Part 3 also reviews short vowels.
  • In Unit 1, Lesson: Understanding Characters, Part 2, students are told, “On the first page of Chapter 6 in Trouble at the Sandbox, you see the word nice. The word nice is spelled with the VCe pattern. It has a long vowel, followed by a consonant and the letter e." Students then look at short and long vowel combinations, such as can/cane. In Part 3, students use a decodable text on long vowels.
  • In Unit 2, Lesson: Reading Alexander, Who Used to be Rich Last Sunday, Part 2, students read words with the digraphs ch, tch, sh, th, and wh in the decodable reader "Gus." Students again read words with these same digraph patterns in Unit 2, Lesson: Reading a Chair for my Mother, Part 1, with the decodable reader "Chet Checks."
  • In Unit 3, Lesson: Who Was Susan B. Anthony?, Part 1, students learn about the long e vowel sound spelled: e, ee, ea, and y. Students are instructed, “Say the words tree, she, neat, happy, be, read, deep, and lucky. Break them into their individual sounds. Now blend them together. Notice the different spellings for the same sound.” In this lesson, students also learn about how breaking a word into its syllable parts can help in decoding the word: “Dividing a word into syllables can help you read it. Some two-syllable words have a vowel-consonant-vowel (VCV) pattern. These words are often divided into syllables after the first vowel. That vowel often has a long vowel sound.”
  • In Unit 3, Lesson: Learning about Roosevelt and Lincoln, Part 2, the student is told, “Look at the cards your Learning Guide shows you. Read the words.” The Learning Guide then shows word cards with ai, ay, and ae. There is also an interactive activity with long a and a decodable book with this lesson.
  • In Unit 4, Lesson: Reading Seek the Sun, Part 1, students learn about long i spelling patterns spelled: i, ie, igh, and y. Students practice reading words with these spelling patterns and breaking the words into syllables. Studenta are told, “Read these words with your Learning Guide. Then, write the words down and draw a line between the syllables in the words with two syllables:
    • tiger
    • skies
    • high
    • sly
    • dried
    • slight
    • final
    • tidy”

Materials have a sequence of phonics instruction to build toward application however, it lacks cohesiveness. At the beginning of the school year, students work on basic skills such as short vowel spelling patterns, which are below grade level standards. By the end of the school year, students work on more complex long vowel spelling patterns. Examples include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • In Unit 1, Lesson: Find Out about the Trouble at the Sandbox, Part 2, students practice reading a text, "Gus," which contains a review of short vowels.
  • In Unit 2, Lesson: What Lesson Did Alexander Learn, Part 2, students learn ar words.
  • In Unit 3, Lesson: Learning about Roosevelt and Lincoln, Part 2, the Learning Guide shows students Sound-Spelling cards for a, ai, and ay. During an interactive activity, students learn about the long a sound, and students learn about two syllable words with long a and VCV pattern.
  • In Unit 5, Lesson: Johnny’s Timeline, Part 1, students read the words with long vowel sounds oo, ue, ew, and ui. Once they read the words, then practicing segmenting and blending each word from the sound spelling cards 68, 90, 102, and 103.

Indicator 1p

Materials, questions, and tasks provide explicit instruction for and regular practice to address the acqusition of print concepts, including alphabetic knowledge, directionality, and function (K-1), structures and features of text (1-2).
2/2
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Indicator Rating Details

The materials reviewed for Grade 2 meet the criteria for materials, questions, and tasks provide explicit instruction for and regular practice to address the acquisition of print concepts, including alphabetic knowledge, and directionality (K-1), structures and features of text (1-2).

The Grade 2 materials provide students with explicit instruction and regular practice in text structures and features. Students have many opportunities over the course of the school year to analyze text features and structures. Graphic organizers for main idea and details, sequence of events, and cause and effect help to strengthen this instruction over the course of the school year. Students are frequently provided a question to think about during reading that focused on text structure such as, “What is the main topic of the text? What do the details show about the kind of person John Chapman was?” Text features such as photographs, illustrations, timelines, and text boxes were also frequently pointed out to the student and discussed.

Students have opportunities to identify text structures (e.g., main idea and details, sequence of events, problem and solution, compare and contrast, and cause and effect). Examples include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • In Unit 1, Lesson: Find Out about the Trouble at the Sandbox, Part 1, students identify the main idea and key details by answering the questions, “How are Theo and his friends building a volcano and what does this tell you about him? As well as how might you think Theo and his friends feel when the bigger boys show up in the sandbox?”
  • In Unit 1, Lesson: Find out About the Trouble at the Sandbox, Part 2, students sequence the events of the story based on the characters. Students are prompted to think about how each event follows one another after the big boys show up in the Sandbox. Students are further prompted to focus on how events are sequenced and driven by the characters of the story.
  • In Unit 1, Lesson: Meet Friends Around the World, Part 3, the Learning Guide tells the student the reasons that compare and contrast can help make decisions for what is planned for the weekend, or what instrument you might choose to play.
  • In Unit 1, Part 4, Mighty Oak Tree, Part 4, students write about how the animals and people use oak trees by practicing their understanding of compare and contrast.
  • In Unit 3, Lesson: Who Was Theodore Roosevelt?, Part 1, students look for details in a biography.
  • In Unit 3, Lesson: Learning About Roosevelt and Lincoln, Part 1, students look for details in an interview and create a web for those details. Students learn about the text structure of a poem.
  • In Unit 3, Lesson: Susan B. Anthony, Part 1, students look for details in historical fiction and create a T-chart for those details. Students sequence a story using a sequence map. Later the students study sequence to see how it affects character actions.
  • In Unit 3, Lesson: Change Makers, Part 3, students find the main idea in a new story and complete a main ideas chart. The materials address cause and effect and have students complete a cause and effect chart. Students get a review of main idea and details by rereading earlier text. In a new text, students create a story sequence chart and map the story structure.
  • In Unit 4, Lesson: The Earth Shakes in 1906, Part 1, students compare and contrast the points of view of two characters. Students also sequence character actions and feelings in a box chart, and compare characters in a Venn diagram. They reread a familiar passage to check for main ideas and details.
  • In Unit 4, Lesson: Do Dragons Cause Thunder?, Part 3, students make a sequence chart for the new story. They then write a scene summarizing the central message. They do the same for another new story in this lesson. Students fill out a compare and contrast Venn diagram on characters’ responses to an action.
  • In Unit 5, Lesson: Who Was Johnny Appleseed, Part 1, students think about the answers to the following questions while reading the text about Johnny Appleseed, “What is the main topic of the text? What do the details show about the kind of person John Chapman was?” The Learning Guide revisits these questions with the student and they discuss the main idea of the text. The students also writes down three details from the text in their ELA journal.
  • In Unit 5, Lesson: Johnny’s Timeline, Part 1, students complete a main idea and details web graphic organizer for the text Johnny Appleseed.
  • In Unit 5, Lesson: Pioneer Life, Part 2, students read Pioneers to the West. Students are instructed to think about the following question: “What caused the events in the text?” In this lesson, students also fill out a cause and effect chart about the California Gold Rush. Students also watch a Brain Pop Jr. video about cause and effect.
  • In Unit 5, Lesson: Who Was Johnny Appleseed, Part 3, students watch a video titled "Determining the Main Idea." Afterwards, the student and Learning Guide discuss why it is important to find the main idea of a text.
  • In Unit 5, Lesson: Pioneer Life, Part 3, students read Pioneers to the West. Students are instructed to think about the following question: “In what order do the events in the text happen?” After reading, students fill out a story sequence chart about the text.
  • In Unit 5, Lesson: Pioneer Life, Part 5, students create a Venn diagram to compare and contrast George Staples and John McWilliams from the text Pioneers to the West.

Materials include lessons and activities about text features (e.g. title, byline, headings, table of contents, glossary, pictures, illustrations). Examples include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • In Unit 1, Lesson: Reading the House on Maple Street, Part 2, students learn that illustrations can help tell important details about the story.
  • In Unit 3, Lesson: Who Was Theodore Roosevelt?, Part 1, introduces students to text features in the chapter book -- photos, captions, chapter titles, headings and subheadings, sidebars. Students then write one paragraph about why the author might have included this text feature. Students are asked to think of a text feature that the author should have used. Students look for text features in a different book. Students then write one paragraph about this text feature.
  • In Unit 1, Lesson: Let’s Meet Snowshoe Hare!, Part 3, students read the last three stories of the book. Students answer the following questions about how illustrations help to better understand the story. One of the questions is: “What does the picture on the page show you about how Snowshoe share feels?”
  • In Unit 2, Lesson: Reading Money Matters, Part 4, students are prompted to use the glossary in order to understand words that they may not know or to use the pictures to see what something looks like such as a bank card.
  • In Unit 2, Lesson: Reading I Wanna Iguana, Part 5, students learn about headings.
  • In Unit 3, Lesson: Learning About Roosevelt and Lincoln, Part 2, students look for sidebars and create a quotation. Students play Text Feature Jeopardy.
  • In Unit 3, Lesson: Making a City Green, Part 2, students to examine how pictures provide information in a text.
  • In Unit 3, Lesson: What is Change Makers All About?, Part 5, students add text features to a biography.
  • In Unit 5, Lesson: Johnny’s Timeline, Part 1, students are given the following question to consider when reading the text Johnny Appleseed: “How do the text features and pictures connect to the words of the text?” Later on in this lesson text features such as timelines, photographs, and illustrations are discussed. The materials state, “Johnny Appleseed has a timeline. A timeline is a text feature. Text features help readers understand the information in the text. A timeline shows events in chronological, or time, order. Johnny Appleseed also has photographs and illustrations. It has captions that tell more about the photographs and illustrations. These are also text features.”
  • In Unit 5, Lesson: Johnny’s Timeline, Part 2, students are given the following question to consider as they read: “What information can you learn from the photos and illustrations?” As students read they also answer questions that relate to text features such as: “Look at the photograph on p. 54. Read the text on p. 55. What does the photograph tell you about the frontier?” and “Look at pp. 56–61. The timeline does not change. Why is that?”

Indicator 1q

Instructional opportunities are frequently built into the materials for students to practice and gain decoding automaticity and sight-based recognition of high frequency words. This includes reading fluency in oral reading beginning in mid-Grade 1 and through Grade 2.
2/4
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Indicator Rating Details

The materials reviewed for Grade 2 partially meet the criteria for instructional opportunities are frequently built into the materials for students to practice and gain decoding automaticity and sight-based recognition of high-frequency words. This includes reading fluency in oral reading beginning in mid Grade 1 and through Grade 2.

The Grade 2 materials provide students frequent opportunities to read on grade level texts. The anchor texts used are frequently read by the student, but as evidenced below in Unit 5, teachers are provided the option to have the student listen to the story rather than reading it themselves. Students have opportunities to read several texts that are at grade level as well as decodable readers that reinforce a variety of phonics skills. Students reread text and focus on understanding the text better and have opportunities to read high-frequency words; however, opportunities are missed for students to receive explicit instruction and practice opportunities in irregularly spelled words. 

Some opportunities are provided over the course of the year in core materials for students to purposefully read on-level text. Examples include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • In Unit 1, Lesson: Let’s Meet Snowshoe Hare!, Part 1, students read the story and focus on being able to answer several questions about the text.
  • In Unit 2, Lesson: Reading Alexander, Who Used to be Rich Last Sunday, Part 4, on page 16 & 17 of “Sleuth,” students answer questions using text evidence from the story.
  • In Unit 3, Lesson: Who Was Theodore Roosevelt?, Part 1, the materials state, “Have your student read the story aloud with another student or with you, either in unison or by reading alternate sections. Have your student read the story independently.”
  • In Unit 5, Lesson: Kids Who Went West, Part 3, students read the decodable text "Camp Gnome." The students focus on reading words with kn, wr, gn, and mb.
  • In Unit 5, Lesson: Who Was Johnny Appleseed?, Part 5, students read the decodable text "Boyhood Dreams." For unknown words, students are to break apart words into syllables.

Some opportunities are provided over the course of the year in core materials for students to demonstrate sufficient accuracy, rate, and expression in oral reading with on-level text and grade level decodable words. The materials provide general instructions about assessing a student’s fluency and no specifics about what tool to use or what to measure in fluency. Examples include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • In Unit 1, Lesson: Let’s Meet Snowshoe Hare!, Part 1, students are prompted from the Learning Guide to read with appropriate phrasing. The Learning Guide reads the passage first with appropriate phrasing and then the reader reads the text.
  • In Unit 3, Lesson: Change Makers, Part 2, the Learning Guide is provided the following information about helping a student with fluency: “While your student is reading, assess his or her rate. Explain that reading at a good rate means that listeners can understand easily. Point out that reading too slowly can cause problems for listeners, who become bored and have their attention wander. Choose a passage from the text and read at a slow rate. Follow by reading the same passage at an appropriate rate. Have your student follow the appropriate model. Suggest that your student read the passage again, if needed, to improve rate.”
  • In Unit 4, Lesson: The Earth Shakes in 1906, Part 6, The Learning Guide is provided the following information about fluency: “Explain to your student that it is important to read with expression. Have your student read along as you read pp. 62–63. Model how to use expression. Have your student read these pages. Provide support by helping your student with words that are unfamiliar. While your student is reading, assess his or her fluency. Give feedback about the use of expression as your student reads.”
  • In Unit 5, Lesson: Who Was Johnny Appleseed?, Part 1, the Learning Guide is instructed to work with the student on fluency when reading the text John Chapman: Planter and Pioneer. The directions state, “While your student is reading, assess his or her fluency. Model reading at an appropriate rate. Explain to your student that reading at a steady rate helps listeners understand what is being read aloud. If your student struggles with this task, have your student first listen to you read a page and then read aloud with you.”
  • In Unit 5, Lesson: Johnny’s Timeline, Part 1, the Learning Guide discusses fluency as it relates to reading an informational text with the student. The directions state, “While your student is reading, assess his or her fluency. Tell your student that informational texts are often read at a slightly slower pace than stories. Explain that paying attention to punctuation cues that signal pauses, such as commas and periods, can help readers read at an appropriate rate.”
  • In Unit 5, Lesson: Pioneer Life, Part 1, the Learning Guide encourages the student to focus on appropriate rate while reading Pioneers to the West. The directions state, “While your student is reading, assess his or her fluency. Tell your student that reading at an appropriate rate means reading at just the right speed. Have your student read aloud a portion of the text at an appropriate rate.”

Materials somewhat support reading of texts with attention to reading strategies such as rereading, self-correction, and the use of context clues. Examples include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • In Unit 1, Lesson: Reading the House on Maple Street, Part 1, students reread the text paying attention to illustrations. When students are reading, they are focused on what the illustrations help them to understand about the story.
  • In Unit 5, Lesson: Who Was Johnny Appleseed?, Part 3, students practice dividing words into syllables, the student is told, “Knowing how to divide words into syllables can help you sound out words you do not know. Reading the smaller parts first can help you read the whole word.”
  • In Unit 5, Lesson: Who Was Johnny Appleseed?, Part 6, students are provided with some strategies they can use if they come across a word they do not understand. The student is told, “You will come across many words you have not seen or heard before when you read. Sometimes, you can find clues in the other words in the text. These are called context clues. Other times, you need to break the word into parts. You might know the meaning of the smaller word parts. If you can’t figure out the meaning of a word this way, you might need to look in a dictionary.”

Students have limited opportunities to practice and read irregularly spelled words. Many lessons do not include explicit instruction and practice opportunities for students to read irregularly spelled words. Examples of opportunities to read irregularly spelled words include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • In Unit 1, Lesson: Understanding Characters, Part 3, students read the high frequency word every. The student practices spelling the word and reading it in a text.
  • In Unit 1, Lesson: Meet Friends From Around the World, Part 4, students work with high frequency words one and said.
  • In Unit 2, Lesson: What Lesson Did Alexander Learn?, Part 1, the teacher does not explicitly tell students each high-frequency word. The students are shown the word and expected to read the words (went, before, do, this, far, and more). Students spell the words aloud, write the words, and use the words in a sentence.
  • In Unit 5, Lesson: Kids Who Went West, Part 1, students read the decodable text "Writing Letters" that contains the high-frequency words each, away, write, two, and other.
  • In Unit 5, Lesson: Johnny’s Timeline, Part 2, students practice saying, spelling, and drafting sentences using the high-frequency words thought, moon, gave, eyes, and goes.
  • In Unit 5, Lesson: Pioneer Life, Part 3, students practice saying, spelling, and underlining in sentences the high-frequency words family, swim, hills, then, night, and soft.

Indicator 1r

Materials, questions, and tasks provide systematic and explicit instruction in and practice of word recognition and analysis skills in a research-based progression in connected text and tasks.
2/4
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Indicator Rating Details

The materials reviewed for Grade 2 partially meet the criteria for materials, questions, and tasks providing systematic and explicit instruction in and practice of word recognition and analysis skills in a research-based progression in connected text and tasks.

The Grade 2 materials do provide some practice with teaching word recognition and analysis skills in a research based progression. However, the level of practice and application is not frequent or adequate. While the majority of second grade word analysis skills were taught over the course of the school year, suffix and prefix instruction is a weak point in the sequence. The materials do not provide enough opportunities for the students to practice or apply the skills that they are learning. In addition, there is not a systematic and explicit way of teaching the skills. Standards were also mislabeled throughout the sequence, for example, in Unit 2, Lesson: Reading Alexander, Who Used to be Rich One Day, Part 1, the lesson is labeled as addressing R.F.2.3.D, yet suffixes and prefixes are not explicitly taught anywhere in the lesson.

Some of the materials support students’ development learn grade-level word recognition and analysis skills (e.g., apply spelling-sound relationship on common words, decode regularly spelled two-syllable words with long vowels, and decode words with common prefixes and suffixes) in connected text and tasks. Examples include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • In Unit 1, Lesson: Find Out about the Trouble in The Sandbox, Part 2, students read the decodable reader "Gus," and learn about short u sounds. Then students identify any short u sounds when they read the story, Trouble in the Sandbox.
  • In Unit 1, Lesson: Understanding Characters, Part 2, students practice blending VCe words. The directions state, “Write the following words. Have your student segment and blend the words with you one at a time. Ask your student to identify the letters that spell the vowel sound and the letter that spells the ending sound: rice, Pete, wise, face, cute.”
  • In Unit 1, Lesson: Let’s Meet a Snowshoe Hare!, Part 3, students read the decodable reader "We Can Do A Lot." Students work on reading long vowel, two syllable e words.
  • In Unit 2, Lesson: I Wanna Iguana, Part 1, students read the decodable "Herb Helps Out" that contains words with r-controlled vowels spelled er, ir, and ur.
  • In Unit 2, Lesson: Comparing Alexander and a Chair for my Mother, Part 2, students practice reading words with r-controlled vowels spelled ar, or, ore, and oar.
  • In Unit 3, Lesson: Learning about Roosevelt and Lincoln, Part 2, students learn about long a spelling patterns a, ai, and ay. Students also learn about how dividing words into syllables can help them to decode the word. Students then practice these skills by reading the decodable reader "Stay Away, Bugs!"
  • In Unit 5, Lesson: Pioneer Life, Part 3, students decode words with common prefixes in connected texts and tasks using decodable reader "In the Woods." Students learn about the prefixes un-, re-, pre-, and dis-. Students begin by finding some of the words with these prefixes in the text and then students read the decodable reader to the Learning Guide.

Materials provide some opportunities to read irregularly spelled words in connected text and tasks. Examples include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • In Unit 1, Lesson: Meet Friends Around the World, Part 4, students practice reading and spelling the irregularly spelled words said and one. Students read the following sentence: “Stan said he saw one duck.”
  • In Unit 3, Lesson: Who Was Susan B. Anthony?, Part 2, students read the irregularly spelled word again in the decodable reader "Our Reading Party."
  • In Unit 3, Lesson: Who Was Theodore Roosevelt?, Part 4, students read the irregularly spelled word give.

Lessons and activities provide students some opportunities to learn grade-level word recognition and analysis skills while encoding (writing) in context and decoding words (reading) in connected text and tasks. Examples include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • In Unit 3, Lesson: Making a City Green, Part 4, students read the decodable reader "Sam’s Stroll." The decodable reader uses and teaches long o sounds. Students begin by writing the long o sounds and then reading the story to their Learning Guide.
  • In Unit 4, Lesson: Reading About Disasters, Part 1, students practice writing down words with the -le ending and breaking the words apart into their syllables. The directions state, “Say these words with your Learning Guide. Then, write the words and divide them into syllables: simple, beetle, pebble, cradle.”
  • In Unit 4, Lesson: Reading Myths: Do Dragons Cause Thunder?, Part 2, students practice rewriting lists of words with the -er and -est suffixes. Students then orally tell their teacher a sentence for each word.

Indicator 1s

Materials support ongoing and frequent assessment to determine student mastery and inform meantingful differentiantion of foundational skills, including a clear and specific protocol as to how students performing below standard on these assessments will be supported.
0/4
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Indicator Rating Details

The materials reviewed for Grade 2 do not meet the criteria for materials supporting ongoing and frequent assessment to determine student mastery and inform meaningful differentiation of foundational skills, including a clear and specific protocol as to how students performing below standard on these assessments will be supported.

The Grade 2 materials provide some assessment opportunities for foundational skills, specifically fluency. These opportunities are usually found in the end of the unit quizzes. There are some quick check assessments that are used throughout the program, but these focus on comprehension and text structure. There are missed opportunities for guidance on how to determine if a student needs additional support on mastery of skills based on assessment results. Protocols and guidance are minimal for how to support a student if the student is not understanding a skill and then how to re-assess the student. The assessments and differentiated opportunities focus on fluency and comprehension, but not foundational skills.

There are few assessment opportunities provided over the course of the year in core materials for students to demonstrate progress toward mastery and independence of foundational skills. Assessments of phonics and word analysis skills are not in the materials. Examples of fluency assessments include:

  • In Unit 2, Lesson: Reading A Chair for My Mother, Part 1, the Learning Guide is prompted to assess the student’s fluency. However, there is not a protocol to use in order to tell the Learning Guide what is appropriate fluency for a student in Grade 2.
  • In Unit 3, Lesson: Learning about Roosevelt and Lincoln, Part 3, there is one area of assessment within the four parts, about assessing fluency, particularly expression. The Learning Guide is told, “While your student is reading, assess his or her phrasing. Explain that it is important to read poems with appropriate phrasing for each line. That helps readers understand the meaning of a poem. Model reading the poem aloud with correct phrasing, pausing at the end of each line and as appropriate for commas and end punctuation. Then, listen as your student reads the poem aloud.” There is no recording mechanism, such as an information sheet. There are no guidelines for what is proper speed, accuracy, and expression.

Some assessment materials provide teachers and students with information of students’ current skills/level of understanding of foundational skills. There is a focus on fluency with minimal information for how the Learning Guide assesses fluency. There is no attention to phonics and word analysis skills for assessing a student’s current skill level. Examples include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • At the end of most lessons, students answer the following question: “How well do you feel you understand the concepts from this lesson part?” Students select from the following options: “I feel that I understand the concepts very well. I feel comfortable with the concepts. I feel that I need more practice with the concepts.” The teacher however isn’t provided with any further instruction for reteaching or enrichment based on the students’ answer.
  • In Unit 5, Lesson: Johnny’s Timeline, Part 1, the Learning Guide is told, “While your student is reading, assess his or her fluency.” The Learning Guide is not provided with any forms to track miscues or any instructions on administering a timed reading assessment.

Materials do no support teachers with instructional adjustments to help students make progress toward mastery in foundational skills.

Indicator 1t

Materials, questions, and tasks provide high-quality lessons and activities that allow for differentiation of foundational skills.
2/4
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Indicator Rating Details

The materials reviewed for Grade 2 partially meet the criteria for materials, questions, and tasks providing high-quality lessons and activities that allow for differentiation of foundational skills, so all students achieve mastery of foundational skills.

At times, the materials provide high-quality lessons and activities to reach mastery of foundational skills for Grade 2 learners. However, multiple opportunities to learn each foundational skill are lacking. The foundational skills are often taught in one lesson. Sometimes the materials review foundational skills taught and learned. Materials do not routinely provide the guidance to the Learning Guide in areas where students may need more practice and in areas where student could use enrichment.

Some materials provide high-quality learning lessons and activities for every student to reach mastery of foundational skills. However, multiple opportunities to learn each foundational skill are lacking. Examples include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • In Unit 1, Lesson: Understanding Characters, Part 3, students learn high-frequency words by spelling them. Students spell the word every.
  • In Unit 1, Lesson: Find Out about the Trouble at the Sandbox, Part 5, students learn and review short vowel sounds. Students practice short vowels by pointing to the sound learning cards that have short vowels on them and what vowel is in the word. Students blend the word wing and the Learning Guide writes it down for the student to blend.
  • In Unit 2, Lesson: Reading I Wanna Iguana, Part 1, students spell and write each word and then they tell the Learning Guide sentences using the following high-frequency words: like, put, first, done, saw, also, and into. Students spell each word with the Learning Guide and then without the Learning Guide.
  • In Unit 5, Lesson: Pioneer Life, Part 1, students learn about the prefixes re-, un-, pre-, and dis-. Students practice underlining the prefix in the words unwrap, replant, preschool, and disappear. Then students practice adding prefixes to the words load, sell, view, and agree. Students also practice this skill in Unit 5, Part 3, Pioneer Life, when they read the decodable text “In the Woods” that contains words with prefixes. Students also read another decodable reader with these prefixes in Unit 5, Part 6, Pioneer Life, with the text "An Unhappy Spaceman."

Materials provide minimal guidance to teachers for scaffolding and adapting lessons and activities to support each student’s needs in foundational skills. Examples include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • In Unit 2, Lesson: Comparing Alexander and a Chair for my Mother, Part 1, students are prompted to read the story, and the Learning Guide is given options on how to go about supporting a student who is struggling. The Learning Guide is prompted to evaluate the students fluency during the reading for accuracy. If the student is reading to slow, the Learning Guide is prompted to speed the student up in reading and, if they are reading too fast, they are prompted to slow down for commas and periods.
  • In Unit 1, Lesson: Let’s Meet Snowshoe Hare!, Part 3, students read the decodable reader “We Can Do a Lot.” The Learning Guide is prompted to have the student read the text three or four times if there is enough time. The Learning Guide is prompted to give corrective feedback for their decoding and fluency. The Learning Guide helps students blend and decode words they struggle with.

Students have minimal practice opportunities with each grade level foundational skill component in order to reach mastery. Examples include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • In Units 3 and 4, there are occasionally interactive games available to be played, which give students additional practice with each foundational skill.
  • In Unit 5, Lesson: Who Was Johnny Appleseed, Part 3, students learn about multiple syllable words, including compound words, and words with the VCCV pattern or VCV pattern. Students then practice dividing words such as elbow, omit, bedroom, radar, hometown, and darling into their syllables.
  • In Unit 5, Part 5, Who Was Johnny Appleseed, students read the decodable text "Boyhood Dreams." The student is instructed to break apart any words they do not know into syllables.

Gateway Two

Building Knowledge with Texts, Vocabulary, and Tasks

Partially Meets Expectations

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Gateway Two Details

The instructional materials reviewed for Grade 2 partially meet the expectations for building students' knowledge and vocabulary to support and help grow students’ ability to comprehend complex texts independently and proficiently. Materials partially meet the criteria for texts are organized around a topic/topics to build students' ability to read and comprehend complex texts independently and proficiently. Materials partially meet the criteria for 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 and do not meet expectations that questions and tasks support students' ability to complete culminating tasks in which they demonstrate their knowledge of a topic. Materials support students' increasing writing skills over the course of the school year and include full support for students’ independent reading.

Criterion 2a - 2h

20/32

Indicator 2a

Texts are organized around a topic/topics to build students knowledge and vocabulary which will over time support and help grow students' ability to comprehend complex texts independently and proficiently.
2/4
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Indicator Rating Details

The instructional materials reviewed for Grade 2 partially meet the criteria that texts are organized around a topic/topics to build students knowledge and vocabulary which will over time support and help grow students’ ability to comprehend complex texts independently and proficiently.

Grade 2 materials consist of five units. Some units are built around a topic and the texts that students read to build knowledge and vocabulary towards learning of that topic. Other units are based on a theme and the texts students read are related to that theme. The unit topics/themes are sometimes lacking depth, and as a result, the texts used in the Lesson Parts are not always strongly related to the topic/theme. The lessons do sometimes provide structured instructional tasks leading to students’ ability to complete a project that is aligned to the unit topic/theme.

The texts within a unit are typically organized around a topic, but in some situations the texts do not relate to the given topic. Some of the topics are vague, such as Unit 2, which focuses on “Making Decisions.” Units that do not have a unit project do not have a guiding question or culminating task to help determine if the students are building knowledge on the unit topic. The texts provided are not ample to help the students build knowledge and work towards reading complex text.

Examples include, but are not limited to:

  • In Unit 1, the topic is “Characters.” Throughout Unit 1, students are reading texts, engaging in discussion with their Learning Guide, and writing about the characters in the text. Some examples of these instructional tasks focused on building understanding of characters include, but are not limited to, the following:
    • In Unit 1, Lesson: Find Out about the Trouble at the Sandbox, Part 1, students read Chapter 1 of Trouble at the Sandbox to learn about the characters and how they react to events in the story.
    • In Unit 1, Lesson: Find Out about the Trouble at the Sandbox, Part 4, students determine point of view and then write their own story choosing one character from Trouble at the Sandbox. In their story, students create a new character and event in which the two characters have different points of view.
    • In Unit 1, Lesson: Understanding Characters, Part 3, students complete a T-Chart comparing Theo’s point of view before the movie and after the movie.
    • In Unit 1, Lesson: Reading the House on Maple Street, Part 5, students compare and contrast their favorite characters from Friends Around the World and The House on Maple Street and use details and examples to talk about them.
  • Unit 2 is focused on “Making Decisions.” In Unit 2, Lesson: Reading A Chair For My Mother, Part 2, students reread a section of A Chair For My Mother and determine what challenges the characters face. The students also read Alexander, Who Used to be Rich Last Sunday by Judith Voist, “Marty’s Summer Job” by Evan Allen, A Chair for My Mother by Vera B. Williams, “Earning Money My Own Way” by Jane Cregg, Money Matters! by Nikki Tate, “Car Wash: A Family Fundraiser” by Tisha Hamilton, I Wanna Iguana by Karen Kaufman Orloff, and various decodable readers. Most of these texts focus on the idea of “Making Decisions,” although there is no clear culminating task for these texts to build toward. This unit focuses more around a theme instead of a topic.
  • In Unit 3, the topic is “Biographies.” Throughout Unit 3, students read texts, engage in discussion with their Learning Guide, and write about biographies. Examples of these instructional tasks focused on building understanding of a biography include, but are not limited to, the following:
    • In Unit 3, Lesson: Who Was Theodore Roosevelt?, Part 3, students read Chapter 6 of Theodore Roosevelt: The Adventurous President and answer questions in their ELA Journal: “Which text features help readers understand more about Teddy Roosevelt as a person instead of as the president of the United States?How do the photo and caption on page 29 clarify the time period of this book?”
    • In Unit 3, Lesson: Who Was Susan B. Anthony?, Part 1, students read Marching With Aunt Susan and think of three questions they have about Susan B. Anthony’s time period. Students use the Internet to find the answers and write them down.
    • In Unit 3, Lesson: Making a City Green, Part 1, after reading City Green, the student use a Story Sequence Chart to note the order of events in the story.
  • Unit 4 focuses on “Reading About Dangerous Disasters.” The students read The Earth Dragon Awakes by Laurence Yep, Seek The Sun by Phillis Gershator, “I Am Boom!” by Jack Prelutsky, “The Fool on the Hill” by Harry Devlin, “Mother of the Mountains” by Harry Devlin, Disaster Alert! by Christine Taylor-Butler, Danger! Earthquakes by Seymour Simon, and various decodable readers. In Unit 4, Lesson: Danger! Earthquakes, Part 1, students focus on the main idea found in Danger! Earthquakes. This builds off previous texts, both informational and literary, that focused on earthquakes.
  • In Unit 5, the topic is “Pioneer Life.” Throughout Unit 5, students read texts, engage in discussion with their Learning Guide, and write about pioneer life. Some examples of the instructional tasks focused on building understanding of a pioneer life include, but are not limited to, the following:
    • In Unit 5, Lesson: Who Was Johnny Appleseed, Part 2, students read John Chapman: Planter and Pioneer and write a paragraph that tells an opinion about why the book ties to the unit title, Pioneering New Ideas and New Worlds. Students support their opinion with reasons and evidence from the text.
    • In Unit 5, Lesson: Pioneer Life, Part 1, vocabulary for this lesson includes: conflict, fortune, bound, typical, territory, opportunities, blizzard, progress, destiny, and advertisement.
    • In Unit 5, Lesson: Kids Who Went West, Part 3, students read Going West and write a story about a child pioneer.

Indicator 2b

Materials contain sets of coherently sequenced 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.
4/4
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Indicator Rating Details

The instructional materials reviewed for Grade 2 meet the criteria that 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.

The materials are coherently sequenced, with lesson parts connecting with previous learning. There is clear articulation of how work with previous texts, tasks and skills relates to new learning. The materials include questions and tasks with most texts requiring students to analyze language, key details, craft, and structure. Most lesson parts allow for in-depth analysis for some aspects of language, key details, craft, and structure. Most lessons include question types that help students build understanding, and integrate ideas and knowledge across several days. During each part, students had the opportunity to engage in orally discussing what they had read or writing a response in their English Language Arts Journal. Questions are sequenced from basic to more text-based and varied in type. Many of these skills are developed through the instructional tasks included in the PLUS format (Project, Learn, Use, Show) for each Unit. Each unit and/or part requires a different analysis of the language, structure, story elements, and craft, yet ample amount of practice is built into the program and cyclical planning ensures that concepts are introduced, taught, and then practiced at a higher level later in the unit or in another unit.

The following series of daily tasks and question sets exemplifies a coherent and connected sequence:

  • Every lesson part begins with a reminder of the previous work and lesson understanding and a connection to the new learning that is upcoming in the lesson. For example, in the Unit 5 Project: Pioneering New Ideas and New Worlds, the end of unit task for learners states, “What do you think of when you hear the words “Wild West?” What do you picture? Cowboys? Searching for gold? What was life really like in the days of the Old West? Was it really “wild?” What was it like for children? You will write a multi-purpose paper to find out what it was really like to go out west.” In Unit 5, Lesson: Kids Who Went West, Part 1, students read the story Going West pages 70-85. When they are finished, the directions state, “Now, look back in the text you read. Find places in the text that tell you how Mama or Jake feels about the challenges they face. This text evidence will help you think about Mama’s or Jake’s point of view. Pick one of these two characters. Write a summary statement that tells your character’s point of view about the journey. You can look back at the text to help you remember how this character feels about the journey.” In Unit 5, Lesson: Kids Who Went West, Part 2, students read the text Going West pages 86-99. When they are finished, the directions state, “One way to get clues about a character’s point of view is to look at what he or she says. Dialogue, or the words the characters say, can give you key details. Look back at the story. How does Mama feel about living on the prairie? How do you know? You can write a summary statement about how Mama feels. Then, support that statement with what Mama says. These are key details. To help you do this work, you’ll create Point of View Chart.” In Unit 5, Lesson: Kids Who Went West, Part 3, students read the text Going West pages 100-117. After reading, the directions state, “Now, you will write a story about a child pioneer. To prepare for writing a story about a topic, it is useful to brainstorm details. What do you know about pioneer life now that you have read Going West? With your Learning Guide, brainstorm a list of details about life on the prairie. Then, with your Learning Guide, you will retell the narrative about Hannah and her family. Use the details you wrote on your list."

Evidence of the analysis of language, key ideas and details, craft, and structure include, but are not limited to:

  • In Unit 1, Lesson: Find Out the Trouble at the Sandbox, Part 1, the students focus on characters and how they act. After reading chapter 1 of Trouble at the Sandbox, the student discusses various aspects of the character with the Learning Guide. Example questions include: “Theo doesn’t mind playing in the sandbox on a hot day. What does this tell you about him? How are Theo and his friends building the volcano, and what does this tell you about them?” Students then complete a web graphic organizer to describe Theo.
  • In Unit 1, Lesson: Let’s Meet Snowshoe Hare!, Part 2; Prior to this lesson, students read a story about how a bear and a beaver prepare for winter. Students are asked to read the next portion of the story Snowshoe Hare’s Winter Home and think about the following question as they read: “How are Trout, Turtle, and Duck are preparing for winter?” Students work to fill out a Main Idea and Key Details Graphic Organizer where they are required to use the question: "What do the details tell about where the characters live in the winter?" Students cite the main idea and three key details from the text. Students then work to write a short story based upon a selection of topics where they are required to put the events in order using transition words. The curriculum provides the following transition words as examples for students to use in their writing along with an example: first, before, during, then, next, after, soon, later, suddenly, following, finally, at last, now, therefore, tomorrow, yesterday, meanwhile.
  • In Unit 2, Lesson: Reading I Wanna Iguana, Part 2, students read page 81-87 of I Wanna Iguana and then answer: “How is this story organized?” The student looks more closely at the text and discusses the structure with the Learning Guide using the questions as talking points: “What is the structure of the story?” “How is this different from other stories?” “How are readers introduced to the characters of the story?” “How is this different from other stories?” “How do readers learn about story events? How is this different from other stories?” The structure of I Wanna Iguana is a series of letters. Students learn about using commas in greetings and closings of a letter and then put it into practice by responding to one of the letters in the story I Wanna Iguana.
  • In Unit 3, Lesson: Who Was Susan B. Anthony?, Part 4, students reread Marching with Aunt Susan and answer the following questions in their English Language Arts journal: “What is the point of view of the crowd at the Golden Gate Auditorium? How can you tell that Papa cares about women’s rights even though he doesn’t let Bessie go hiking at the beginning of the story?” After discussing various characters’ point of view, the students try to determine if a character’s point of view can change. They look back at the text and answer the following questions in their English Language Arts journal: “What does Bessie's father think about what women and girls can do at the beginning of the story? How do you know at the end of the story that her father’s point of view has changed?”
  • In Unit 4, Lesson: Reading Myths: Do Dragon’s Cause Thunder?, Part 2; Students have read The Earth Dragon Awakes and Seek the Sun in previous lessons. They go back and compare/contrast the cultural references in the texts and how they affect the character’s beliefs, thoughts, and how they respond to certain events. Students then draft a conclusion for the myth they have been working on using the text evidence from both stories and the text structure of using a detail from the beginning of the story to help show the reader what has changed within the story or what has stayed the same.
  • In Unit 5, Lesson: Who Was Johnny Appleseed?, Part 5, students read the end of John Chapman: Planter and Pioneer with a focus of identifying author’s purpose and supporting an opinion with examples and details. After reading students complete a task that is provided in the lesson: “Make a list of any words or phrases you do not know in the pages you read. Look at the pictures on the pages near each word or phrase. Do the pictures give clues about the meaning? Look at the words on the page. Do you see clues there? Figuring out the meaning of words and phrases you do not know will help you better understand the story and the author’s purpose. Work with your Learning Guide to figure out the meanings of words and phrases you do not know.” Students work to determine the meaning of unfamiliar words using context clues or a different strategy they have utilized prior. Students are then encouraged to use the word in a sentence that supports the meaning after figuring out what the word means.
  • In Unit 5, Lesson: Who Was Johnny Appleseed?, Part 6, after rereading John Chapman: Planter and Pioneer, students are asked to look at the points the author makes and the reasons the author makes those points. Students fill out a T-Chart to keep track of the points and reasons. The students are given the following example: “Look again at the text. On page 4, the author writes that Johnny loved wild places best. You can write that in the Author’s Points column. On page 7, the author writes, 'All day and night, summer, fall, winter and spring, John lived outdoors.' You can write 'Always lived outdoors' in the second column to show that this is a reason for the point in the Author’s Points column.” The students complete the rest of their T-Chart.

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
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Indicator Rating Details

The materials reviewed for Grade 2 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.

The questions posed throughout each unit require students to return to text selections in order to recall details, analyze various aspects of the text, evaluate characters’ actions and motivations. Question sets are sequenced coherently within each lesson to support students in understanding the story elements and structure as well as author’s purpose, perspective, and craft.

Examples of coherently sequenced questions and tasks include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • In Unit 1, Lesson: Understanding Characters, Part 1, students have already read part of Trouble at the Sandbox. In this part they will continue to read the story and think about character traits and characters’ point of view. During and after reading Chapter 5, students answer the following questions: “How are the characters acting? What does this tell you about his or her point of view? When the big boys come up to Theo, Izzy, and Josh at the sandbox again, what words in the text help you better understand Theo's character and point of view? Describe the events that occur when Theo, Josh, and Izzy tell Ms. Lee what happened. What does this scene show about Ms. Lee's character and point of view? What is your first impression of Mr. Park's character?” In Part 3, students read Chapter 6 in Trouble at the Sandbox. They are encouraged to think about how the characters have changed since the beginning of the story while they read. After they have read, they answer the following questions: “How has Theo's point of view about the big boys changed? What events earlier in the story helped Theo change his mind? What does Theo think about doing when he sees Ben in the sandbox? What does he do instead? Why?”
  • In Unit 1, students read Trouble At The Sandbox by Phillip Simpson and reflect on why the characters do what they do. Students also read Snowshoe Hare’s Winter Home by Gillian Richardson and reflect on how the characters feel about winter. Students read Friends Around The World by Ana Galan and determine the main topic and how the facts are connected.

While these text-dependent questions are coherently structured, they are focused on reading comprehension and literal understanding of the main points. The comparison questions about the multiple texts focus on practicing comparing, rather than on building knowledge about a topic.  

  • In Unit 2, Lesson: Comparing Alexander and A Chair for my Mother, Part 3, students look at the characters in Alexander, Who Used to Be Rich Last Sunday and A Chair for my Mother. The prompt tells students, “You’ve been reading about how the girl and Alexander compare. The main characters in the two stories have different thoughts about money and the other characters. Use a T-Chart to create a Comparison Chart to show how these characters are different.” In Unit 2, Lesson: Comparing Alexander and A Chair for my Mother, Part 5, students use the skills learned from previous lessons to help them complete the task with a new text. The task states, “You learned how to understand characters by studying how they react to events. Look back at the Character Web you made about Grandma. Now read “Earning Money My Own Way.” Think about the events of the story and how Andy reacts to them. Then answer the questions: “Describe a main event that happens in the story. How does Andy react to this event? Describe another main event that happens in the story. How does Andy react to this event? What do these reactions tell you about Andy?”

IN this example, the questions are organized to support comprehension of the materials and is skills-focused around reading strategies rather than extending to a deeper content and knowledge build.

Some sequences of questions and tasks work to build some knowledge, although the teacher may need to supplement or revise to focus students' growing understanding while they are also engaging with skill-oriented work. An example is in Unit 4, Lesson: Danger! Earthquakes, Part 5. Students use two texts from the unit to write a paragraph. The prompt states, “In this unit, you have read both fiction and informational texts about earthquakes. One of the stories you read about earthquakes was based on real-life events. You will compare and contrast the key points in the Afterword of The Earth Dragon Awakes to the key points about Earthquakes in Danger! Earthquakes in the Text Collection. Read pp. 107–112 of The Earth Dragon Awakes. Then, read Danger! Earthquakes. What points do both authors make? What are some points that one author makes that the other does not? You may wish to write ideas in your ELA Journal. You can also use a Venn diagram to organize your ideas. Once you have at least one idea that is the same in both texts, and one idea that is different, write a short paragraph about those ideas.”  The answers to these questions require some mining of topic-focused information from the texts, and the study of compare and contrast may offer students opportunity to grow knowledge about earthquakes.

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
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Indicator Rating Details

The materials reviewed for Grade 2 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 through integrated skills (e.g. combination of reading, writing, speaking, listening).

The Grade 2 curriculum contains six units, of which only Units 1, 3, and 5 contain culminating projects. As students move through each unit, they are working on specific activities integrating reading and writing that will help them complete the project. As the student engages in the learning provided in each unit, they are guided through limited activities that help to complete the overall project. These activities also provide some information for the teacher about student’s readiness to complete the culminating tasks. When students have completed their projects, they share with the group who is in their English Language Arts course. This collaboration provides some speaking and listening opportunities.

However, rather than demonstrating comprehension and knowledge of a topic, projects focus mainly on writing skills and writing process elements. Students utilize Information from some of the texts read during the units. Some units do include culminating tasks in the form of short and extended writing tasks connected to texts and skills taught during the unit. Students demonstrate skills developed during the unit during these tasks. Again, these tasks focus on the strategies and skills rather than highlighting knowledge gained from close reading and study of the topics and themes presented in the material.

Some representative examples of how the culminating tasks and assignments show student demonstration of skills and strategies but not development of knowledge of topic include the following:

  • In the Unit 1, Create a Character Collage!, Project, students study narratives and nonfiction texts. While reading narratives, students analyze characters and then begin brainstorming characters to compare. Students then begin a character analysis of their chosen characters. As students read the nonfiction texts, they learn to write compare and contrast paragraphs. Student read and analyze characters and story events in the following texts: Trouble at the Sandbox by Philip Simpson, Snowshoe Hare’s Winter Home by Gillian Richardson, Friends Around the World by Ana Galan, and House on Maple Street by Bonnie Pryor. Students select favorite characters from any source and create a Venn diagram collage. They use pictures, drawings, sentences and/or paragraphs, and images that represent the characters. The collage can be created as a poster or on an online platform. Students include writing that tells facts about the characters (traits and events in which they were involved) and also explains how the characters interact with others (for example, heroes that save people in trouble or lead a team to fight evil). Students write an informative paragraph about each character and a compare/contrast paragraph about the characters.

In this example, the writing done to culminate the work after doing the character study components is focused on the character examination rather than the overarching content and knowledge that may be provided by the texts. 

  • In the Unit 3, Lesson: Biography of a Community Hero, Project, students find a community leader to interview, write interview questions, and craft a biography of that person. They discover how to decide what information is important and how to organize it by reading a series of biographical articles. Students begin the project by reading and examining the lives of community leaders through the following texts: Theodore Roosevelt: The Adventurous President, Inventing the Telephone, Lincoln, Marching with Aunt Susan, and City Green. In each of these biographies, students examine the main ideas and key details within the text as well as explore the text elements that add to the information. By reading each of these texts, they see how a person’s life story can reveal big ideas about historical events. At the end of the unit, students conduct an interview with a community leader and draft and publish a biography of that person.

While the culminating task here does demonstrate an understanding of how to draft a biography, the knowledge of the readings is not explored nor showcased. 

  • In the Unit 5, Pioneering New Ideas and New Worlds project, students write about three different topics related to "Pioneer Life." Their project needs to include a narrative scene, an informative paragraph, and an opinion piece. A project rubric is provided. Students share their project with members in their course group. In Lesson: Who Was Johnny Appleseed?, Part 4, students reread the text John Chapman: Planter and Pioneer and are instructed, “Write a paragraph answering this question, ‘Was Johnny Appleseed a hero?’ You should begin by stating your opinion. Remember to support your opinion with reasons. Use linking words to connect your opinion and your reasons." This helps student with their final project because one of the requirements is to write an opinion piece. In Johnny’s Timeline Part 3, students reread the text Johnny Appleseed and are asked, “The message on John Chapman’s gravestone reads ‘He lived for others.’ Do you agree or disagree with this statement? Give your opinion and support it with reasons.” This helps students with their final project because they are required to write an opinion piece and will need to support it with reasons. In Pioneer Life Part 6, students reread the text Pioneers to the West and are instructed, “Look at the picture on page 7. It shows people walking along the Mormon Trail. Write a description of the painting in your English Language Arts Journal. Then, tell how the image adds to the text or helps the reader.” This activity will help students complete the narrative scene portion of their final project.

In this example, the teacher will have to supplement or revise the lesson to assure students have build knowledge of content as opposed to only reading for basic comprehension and repeating core points from the text. 

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
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Indicator Rating Details

The instructional materials reviewed for Grade 2 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.

  • The Grade 2 materials offer some opportunities for students to interact with and build academic vocabulary words in and across texts. Vocabulary is introduced at the start of almost every lesson in some units, but rarely referred back to during the instruction across the lesson parts. Word-learning strategies are the focus of the Benchmark Vocabulary lessons throughout some units to increase student independence when coming to unknown words in text. The Grade 2 instructional materials do not provide guidance for the Learning Guide that outlines a cohesive year-long vocabulary development component and there are limited opportunities for students to learn, practice, apply, and transfer words into familiar and new contexts. Examples of vocabulary outlined include, but are not limited to, the following:
    Vocabulary Lists
    • In Unit 1, Lesson: Let’s Meet Snowshoe Hare!, Part 1, students are given a list of vocabulary words found in the text. There are no other instructions given about these words in this part of the lesson. In Unit 1, Let’s Meet Snowshoe Hare!, Part 5, students are given strategies for how to approach unfamiliar words. After trying the strategies on the word tumbling, students are given a list of more vocabulary words. The prompt states, “Choose one of these words. Draw a picture of it in your ELA Journal or textbook. Then write a sentence using the word.”
    • Unit 2, Lesson: Reading Alexander, Who Used to Be Rich Last Sunday, Part 1, Vocabulary List, includes the words: save, college, downtown, fined, accident, rich, absolutely, vanish, and positively.
    • Unit 4, Lesson: The Earth Shakes in 1906, Part 1 Vocabulary Lis, includes the words: dialect, twitches, plunges, dazed, scatters, missiles, surges, and trample.
  • High Frequency Words
    • In Unit 2, Lesson: What Lesson Did Alexander Learn?, Part 1, High Frequency Vocabulary, the student instructions state, “As you read, there are some words you will see often. Learning to read these words quickly will make you a better reader. Look at the cards your Learning Guide shows you. Read the words out loud. Spell the words out loud. Then, write the words. Tell your Learning Guide a sentence using each word."
  • Benchmark Vocabulary
    • In Unit 2, Lesson: Reading Alexander, Who Used to Be Rich Last Sunday, Part 4, Benchmark Vocabulary, the student instructions state, “Good readers take the time to figure out words in informational texts that they do not know. Learning what the words mean helps them learn information from a text. They can also use the new word in their own writing. One way good readers do this is to look for clues around the word they do not know. Here’s what to do: Repeat the word after your Learning Guide, think about how the word is used, try to use the word in a sentence, and try to think of another word with the same meaning. Let’s try it using the word fined. Find it in the story Alexander, Who Used to be Rich last Sunday on page 20. Repeat the word after your Learning Guide. Read the sentence where the word appears. Can you find any clues to its meaning? Alexander was fined because he did something his father told him not to do. What did he have to do when he was fined? Now use fined in a sentence. Think of another word or words with the same meaning. Now try some other words from Alexander, Who Used to be Rich last Sunday: college (page 12), downtown (page 13), and accident (page 21). Choose one of these words. Draw a picture of it in your ELA Journal or textbook. Then write a sentence using the word."
    • In Unit 4, Lesson: Danger! Earthquakes, Part 4, Learn Card: BENCHMARK VOCABULARY, students look at the word collapse from page 36 of Danger! Earthquakes and see if there are any other clues about the meaning of collapse.
    • In Unit 4, Lesson: Reading Myths: Do Dragons Cause Thunder?, Part 3, Benchmark Vocabulary, the student instructions state, “You will come across many words you have not seen or heard before when you read. Authors sometimes help you understand these words by giving clues in the other words in the text. These are called context clues. Sometimes you need to look closely at a word and break it into parts to see if you know the meaning of the smaller word parts. If you can’t figure out the meaning of a word this way, you might need to look in a dictionary. Find the word plunges on page 23 of The Earth Dragon Awakes, and use the steps previously discussed to find its meaning. Find one more word in the text you do not know and find its meaning. Write these words and their meanings in your ELA Journal”
  • Application of Vocabulary Activities:
    • In Unit 2, Lesson: Comparing Alexander and a Chair For My Mother, Part 5, the student directions state, “When your student points out an unfamiliar word, read it out loud for him or her and ask your student to repeat it. Help your student through the rest of the process.” These directions are meant for the Learning Guide, but are not in the Teaching Notes section of the lesson.
    • In Unit 3, Lesson: Who Was Theodore Roosevelt?, Part 2, students work through the “Vocabulary” section. Students are given vocabulary from the text and told how to use context clues to help them better understand unfamiliar words. Students are given a list of seven words from the text to try the strategy. They are then told, “You can always check the words in a dictionary.” There are no Teaching Notes provided.
    • In Unit 4, Lesson: The Earth Shakes in 1906, Part 4, students are instructed to do the following when they encounter unknown words: “You will come across many words you have not seen or heard before when you read. Authors sometimes help you understand these words by giving clues in the other words in the text. These are called context clues. Sometimes, you need to look closely at a word and break it into parts to see if you know the meaning of the smaller word parts. If you can’t figure out the meaning of a word this way, you might need to look in a dictionary. Look at the word surges from page 70 of The Earth Dragon Awakes. Let’s look at the sentence: The crowd surges around them. Surges is an action word in this sentence. It describes what the crowd does. Go back and read the sentences around the word in the text. Are there any clues to the meaning of surges in the text? If you still cannot figure out the meaning of surges, look in a dictionary. Find the word trample on page 70. Use same steps to find the meaning of trample. Find one more word in the text you do not know. Use these steps to find the meaning of the word. Write these words and their meanings in your ELA Journal.”
    • In Unit 5, Lesson: Pioneer Life, Part 7, students are given the following directions: “Sometimes, new words are boldface in the text. This often means the words can be found in the glossary. Find a boldfaced word on page 26. Then, read the definition of the word in the glossary. Now, look up the boldfaced words on pages 14, 15, and 17 in Pioneers to the West. After you have read the definition of these words, use each one in a sentence.” There are no Teaching Notes provided for this activity.

Indicator 2f

Materials include a cohesive, year-long plan to 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.
4/4
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Indicator Rating Details

The instructional materials reviewed for Grade 2 meet the criteria that materials contain a year long, cohesive plan of writing instruction and tasks which support students in building and communicating substantive understanding of topics and texts.

At the beginning of each unit, background knowledge for content and writing skill areas is embedded in the first select lessons. As the unit continues, selected texts, writing tasks, writing stamina, and any projects increase in length and complexity. The Learning Guide gradually releases responsibility to students, from modeling and full support to independent completion with scaffolded support. Students demonstrate understanding through a variety of instructional tasks within the PLUS structure (Project, Show, Use, Learn).

Throughout the units, students have multiple opportunities to respond using text-based evidence to support their answers. Students respond in their English Language Arts Journals, through discussion with their learning guide, show their learning via interactive online tasks, and complete culminating projects that encompass a unit’s worth of knowledge. Students participate in shorter writing tasks and have opportunities to go back to the writing tasks to revise by adding content or incorporating the skill they are learning (e.g., description) In multiple units throughout, the shorter writing tasks are pieces of the culminating project. Each unit has an assessment or culminating task that at some point would have required interaction from all four literacy domains (reading, writing, listening, and speaking).

According to the Calvert Support Services document, “Instead of providing ancillary materials for Learning Guides, Calvert provides customers access to highly-trained, certified professional educators for any questions or needs that arise from the curriculum! Education Counselors have considerable experience in the classroom and are extensively trained on the curriculum. The Advisory Teaching Service (ATS) is an optional service that may be purchased from Calvert that enhances the services offered by education counselors.”

Examples include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • In Unit 1, Lesson: Meet Friends Around the World, Part 2, students work on writing informational pieces. The students are prompted to describe a place using facts. The prompt states, “Use facts to describe one of the places that Isabel’s e-pals lives. You can use facts from the text or captions. The facts should be placed in a logical order.” The Teaching Notes tell the Learning Guide to have the students write the facts in a paragraph.
  • In Unit 2, Lesson: Reading Alexander, Who Used to be Rich Last Sunday, Part 3, the LEARN Card directions state, “Think about the ending of Alexander, Who Used to Be Rich Last Sunday. Think about how you can be creative and write a new ending to the story. Now decide which characters will be in your new ending. Make sure the ending follows from the beginning and middle and provides a satisfying closure. Write your new ending in your English Language Arts Journal."
  • In Unit 3, Lesson: Who Was Susan B. Anthony?, Part 1, students work to conduct a research project. Students are asked to write down three questions about Susan B. Anthony’s time period. They then write out a list of sources where they might find the information. The students are then told to use the internet to find their information..
  • In Unit 3, Lesson: What is Change Makers All About?, Part 1, students work on revising a paragraph. Students are given steps to help them revise and are then told, “Go to the summary paragraph you wrote last time. Apply the steps to your paragraph. Revise it to make it clearer. Fix any errors you find. See if you can add conjunctions to combine ideas. When you’re done, make a clean copy and show it to your Learning Guide.” The Teaching Notes provide suggestions for the teacher or Learning Guide to make during the revision process.
  • In Unit 4, Lesson: Danger! Earthquakes, Part 5, the USE Card directions state, “In this unit, you have read both fiction and informational texts about earthquakes. One of the stories you read about earthquakes was based on real-life events. You will compare and contrast the key points in the Afterword of The Earth Dragon Awakes to the key points about Earthquakes in Danger! Earthquakes in the Text Collection. Once you have at least one idea that is the same in both texts, and one idea that is different, write a short paragraph about those ideas."
  • In Unit 5, Lesson: Johnny’s Timeline, Part 2, students reread part of the book Johnny Appleseed looking for text features. Students answer the following questions in their English Language Arts Journal: “How was John able to plant so many apple trees? Look at the photograph on page 54. Read the text on page 55. What does the photograph tell you about the frontier? Look at the picture on page 56. What does it tell you about how a cider mill works? Read pages 56–61. What facts do you learn about John Chapman? Look at pages 56–61. The timeline does not change. Why is that?” Students are then asked to think about some of the text features the author chose NOT to use in Johnny Appleseed. Students are encouraged to think about some of those and why they would be helpful if the author decided to use them. Students craft an opinion paragraph and support their opinion with reasons. They are encouraged to follow the structure: State an opinion and reasons to support the opinion. Use linking words, such as because, and, and a/so to connect opinions and reasons. Provide a concluding statement or section."

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 reviewed for Grade 2 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.

Units include some projects that incorporate research skills. Texts read throughout a given unit are at times, used to complete projects. Students complete projects that encourage them to utilize skills learned and develop knowledge of some texts and some sources. While opportunities for students to develop research skills are present, students do not necessarily need to analyze a topic in order to complete the project. There are opportunities for students to engage with print and digital materials through the LEARN Cards to increase their skills in order to pursue answers to questions related to the content.

In Unit 1, Lesson: Comparing and Contrasting Life Around the World, Part 1, students use facts found in Friends Around the World to write a paragraph. Students are then prompted to think about what kind of facts they need and where they can find them before they begin writing.

In Unit 3, Project: Biography of a Community Hero, students begin their unit-long project of writing a biography about a community member. The prompt states, “In this project, you will write about one person who is a leader in your community. You’ll choose the person. You’ll find out about his or her life. You’ll write questions to ask the person. Then, you’ll talk to him or her to get the answers. Last, you will put together what you know to write about that person’s life.” After interviewing the community member and writing the biography, the materials state, “Show your finished project to your Learning Guide. Make a clean finished copy to give to the person that you interviewed.” This project could be completed without participating in the learning of the unit.

In Unit 4, Lesson: Reading About Disasters, students research and write an informative paragraph. The task is to choose a natural disaster and write an informative paragraph. Students take notes as they read newspaper articles. They then use the notes to write an informative paragraph that includes facts and definitions that will explain the topic to readers.

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.
4/4
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Indicator Rating Details

The instructional materials reviewed for Grade 2 meet the expectations for materials providing a design, including accountability, for how students will regularly engage in a volume of independent reading either in or outside of class.

The materials provide some ideas for independent reading. The Before You Begin section states there is a Reading Log. The lessons provide scaffolding opportunities to help foster independent reading. Guidance is provided through the Teaching Notes.The Before You Begin section says that the students will be reading two to three books per week outside their class texts.

In the LEARN Card activities, students are encouraged and reminded to read books independently, while noting the titles of the books read in their Reading Log. In the Getting Started portion of the platform, the following information is provided for students:

“You should be working to read at least 2–3 books per week in addition to the books in your ELA course. Your Reading Log is a great way to see how much you have read and the kinds of books you enjoy reading. To create your Reading Log, make a table that contains the book’s title, author, number of pages, and the dates you were reading the book. Remember to keep your Reading Log up to date all year long, since you will refer to it in some of your lessons. To find texts to read outside of your classwork, you can use independent reading resources, or visit your local library and ask your librarian.”

Information about Independent Reading expectations is found in the “Before You Begin” portion at the beginning of the school year. The materials suggest 30 minutes of independent reading per day of instruction. The Learning Guide is at liberty to decide when students actively engage in Independent Reading throughout the day.

The Reading Log is meant to serve as a measure of how much the students have read and the kinds of books they enjoy reading. Students create their own Reading Log by making a table that contains the book’s title, author, number of pages, and the dates they read. Some unit lessons refer to the Reading Log. A link to Independent Reading Resources is provided for the Learning Guide. It contains the independent reading Lexile levels for each grade band and resource links with suggested reading lists.

When reading texts during a Lesson, the Learning Guide is offered suggestions for how to read with students that includes read the text aloud to the student, play an audio recording of the text (if applicable) while the student follows in the text, or have the student repeat after the Learning Guide, whisper-read with the Learning Guide, or read along with the Learning Guide.

Examples include, but are not limited to:

  • In the Before You Begin section, there is a “Reading Log” section. In this section, it states, “You will be asked to keep a Reading Log for your ELA course. You should be working to read at least 2–3 books per week in addition to the books in your ELA course.” This section also includes a link titled “independent reading resources,” which helps the students find texts outside the classwork to read. The Before You Begin section also has a “Text Selection” section that states, “As you select texts to read independently, find books that have similar challenges to what you are reading, as well as finding books of different genres and topics. Use your Reading Log to create a balanced reading life!”
  • In Unit 1, Lesson: Meet Friends Around the World, Part 1, students read pages 4-7 of Friends Around the World. The Teaching Notes state, “Guide your student while reading. Select the appropriate reading option for your student. Explain that reading accurately means pronouncing each word correctly without missing words, substituting words, or adding words. Have your student follow along as you model accurately reading aloud from the first page of Friends Around the World. Then echo read the third page of reading with your student.” This does provide some scaffolding for independent reading.
  • In Unit 2, Lesson: Reading A Chair for My Mother, Part 4, from the LEARN Card, students are encouraged to read one or two books a week just for fun and write the titles in their Reading Log. Students think about why they like those stories or characters and write the reasons in their Reading Log.
  • In Unit 3, Lesson: Learning About Roosevelt and Lincoln, Part 1, students read page 42-44 of Theodore Roosevelt: The Adventurous President. The teaching notes state, “Guide your student in reading Theodore Roosevelt: The Adventurous President. Select the appropriate option for your student: Read the story aloud to your student while he or she follows in the text. Play an audio recording of the story (if applicable) while your student follows in the text. Have your student read the story aloud with another student or with you, either chorally or by reading alternate sections. Have your student read the story independently.” This provides some instruction on scaffolding towards independent reading, although it does not provide any resources for the teacher to use to document how the students is doing with their independent reading.
  • In Unit 4, Lesson: Reading Seek the Sun, Part 3, LEARN Card, students are reminded to read on their own for fun between lessons and record the titles of the books they read in their Reading Log, discuss what they read with their Learning Guide, and describe the characters in the fiction books they have read to the Learning Guide.
  • In Unit 5, Lesson: Who Was Johnny Appleseed?, Part 6, students are asked to use their Reading Log. The prompt says, “Remember to read books for fun in your free time. Record the books you read in your Reading Log. Read both stories and informational texts. You might like one type of text better than another. However, you might be surprised! When you read a new book, write something you like about the book in your Reading Log.” There is a Teaching Note that prompts the Learning Guide to ask the student about the stories he or she has read.

Gateway Three

Usability

Not Rated

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Gateway Three Details
This material was not reviewed for Gateway Three because it did not meet expectations for Gateways One and Two

Criterion 3a - 3e

Indicator 3a

Materials are well-designed and take into account effective lesson structure and pacing.
N/A

Indicator 3b

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

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.).
N/A

Indicator 3d

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

Indicator 3e

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

Criterion 3f - 3j

Materials support teacher learning and understanding of the Standards.

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.
N/A

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.
N/A

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.
N/A

Indicator 3i

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

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.
N/A

Criterion 3k - 3n

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

Indicator 3k

Materials regularly and systematically offer assessment opportunities that genuinely measure student progress.
N/A

Indicator 3l

The purpose/use of each assessment is clear:
N/A

Indicator 3l.i

Assessments clearly denote which standards are being emphasized.
N/A

Indicator 3l.ii

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

Indicator 3m

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

Indicator 3n

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

Criterion 3o - 3r

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

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.
N/A

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.
N/A

Indicator 3q

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

Indicator 3r

Materials provide opportunities for teachers to use a variety of grouping strategies.
N/A

Criterion 3s - 3v

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

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.
N/A

Indicator 3t

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

Indicator 3u

Materials can be easily customized for individual learners.
N/A

Indicator 3u.i

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

Indicator 3u.ii

Materials can be easily customized for local use.
N/A

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.).
N/A
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Additional Publication Details

Report Published Date: 04/15/2019

Report Edition: 2018

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.

Rubric Design

The EdReports.org’s rubric supports a sequential review process through three gateways. These gateways reflect the importance of standards alignment to the fundamental design elements of the materials and considers other attributes of high-quality curriculum as recommended by educators.

Advancing Through Gateways

  • Materials must meet or partially meet expectations for the first set of indicators to move along the process. Gateways 1 and 2 focus on questions of alignment. Are the instructional materials aligned to the standards? Are all standards present and treated with appropriate depth and quality required to support student learning?
  • Gateway 3 focuses on the question of usability. Are the instructional materials user-friendly for students and educators? Materials must be well designed to facilitate student learning and enhance a teacher’s ability to differentiate and build knowledge within the classroom. In order to be reviewed and attain a rating for usability (Gateway 3), the instructional materials must first meet expectations for alignment (Gateways 1 and 2).

Key Terms Used throughout Review Rubric and Reports

  • Indicator Specific item that reviewers look for in materials.
  • Criterion Combination of all of the individual indicators for a single focus area.
  • Gateway Organizing feature of the evaluation rubric that combines criteria and prioritizes order for sequential review.
  • Alignment Rating Degree to which materials meet expectations for alignment, including that all standards are present and treated with the appropriate depth to support students in learning the skills and knowledge that they need to be ready for college and career.
  • Usability Degree to which materials are consistent with effective practices for use and design, teacher planning and learning, assessment, and differentiated instruction.

ELA K-2 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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