Alignment: Overall Summary

The instructional materials reviewed for Reach for Reading Grade 1 partially meet expectations of alignment. The Grade 1 instructional materials partially meet expectations for Gateway 1. The materials partially meet the criteria that texts are worthy of students' time and attention, of quality, and are rigorous, meeting the text complexity criteria for the grade level. The materials partially meet the criteria that materials provide opportunities for rich and rigorous evidence-based discussions and writing about texts. The materials meet the criteria for materials in reading, writing, speaking, listening, and language targeted to support foundational reading development are aligned to the standards. The Grade 1 instructional materials partially meet expectations for Gateway 2 and provide some opportunities for students to build knowledge through integrated reading, writing, speaking, listening, and language.

See Rating Scale
Understanding Gateways

Alignment

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Partially Meets Expectations

Gateway 1:

Text Quality

0
27
52
58
46
52-58
Meets Expectations
28-51
Partially Meets Expectations
0-27
Does Not Meet Expectations

Gateway 2:

Building Knowledge

0
15
28
32
24
28-32
Meets Expectations
16-27
Partially Meets Expectations
0-15
Does Not Meet Expectations

Usability

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Not Rated

Not Rated

Gateway 3:

Usability

0
23
30
34
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 Reach for Reading Curriculum for Grade 1 partially meets the expectations that high-quality texts are the central focus of lessons, are at the appropriate grade level text complexity, and are accompanied by quality tasks aligned to the standards of reading, writing, speaking, listening, and language in service to grow literacy skills. Texts are worthy of students' time and attention; however, many of the texts used for read aloud are not above the complexity levels of what most Grade 1 students can read independently and some of the texts remain qualitatively low and do not provide opportunities for students to develop reading independence. Materials provide some opportunities for rich and rigorous evidence-based discussions and writing about texts. Materials in reading, writing, speaking, listening, and language are targeted to support foundational reading development.

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.
15/20
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-
Criterion Rating Details

The instructional materials reviewed for Grade 1 partially meet the criteria that texts are worthy of students' time and attention, are of quality and are rigorous, and support students' advancing toward independent reading. Anchor texts are of publishable quality and reflect the distribution of text types and genres required by the standards. Many of the texts used for read aloud are not above the complexity levels of what most Grade 1 students can read independently, remain quantitatively low in complexity, and do not provide opportunities for students to develop reading independence. Materials expose students to a broad range of text types and disciplines and include a volume of reading so students can achieve grade-level reading proficiency by the end of the year.

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 for Grade 1 meet the expectations of including shared and read-aloud texts in terms of quality and engagement. Many of the texts are engaging and represent a wide range of cultures. Through the read alouds, students gain knowledge as well as literary skills, making them worthy of careful listening.

Examples of publishable quality texts that are worthy of careful listening include:

  • In Unit 1, students hear Papa and Me by Arthur Dorros, which is an engaging realistic fiction story about a boy and the different things he does with his dad. It represents Hispanic culture and has colorful photos. The book was nominated for the Pura Belpre Award for Illustration.
  • In Unit 2, students hear Michael Fay and the Giant Redwoods by Gabrielle Burns, which is a nonfiction article about a man who studies the tall trees of the Redwood Forest. It has exciting photography and social studies and science content.
  • In Unit 3, students hear Markets, which is a social studies article about shopping at markets. It has colorful photography and age-appropriate language and vocabulary about money and shopping.
  • In Unit 4, students hear Ruby in Her Own Time by Jonathan Emmett, which is a story about a family of ducks where smallest grows up to be the biggest and most independent. It is an animal story with pleasing illustrations and a lesson that students should learn at an early age.
  • In Unit 5, students hear For Pete’s Sake by Ellen Stoll Wash, an animal fantasy story about an alligator who feels different from his flamingo friends and wants to be more like them. The moral of the story is that everyone is different even though they have similar qualities.
  • In Unit 6, students hear A Year for Kiko by Ferida Wolff which is a realistic fiction text with age-appropriate sensory vocabulary about the weather and the seasons. It follows the course of the main character’s year and her experiences with the weather of each season.
  • In Unit 7, students hear Communication Then and Now by Robin Nelson which is a high-interest history article that looks at communication from written and printed word to modern communication like e-mails and computers. There are colorful engaging photographs and a timeline for reference.
  • In Unit 8, students hear Caperucita Roja by Argentina Palacios, which is a modern multicultural version of a classic fairy tale, Little Red Riding Hood. There are colorful and engaging illustrations and it reinforces directional words.

Indicator 1b

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

The instructional materials reviewed for Grade 1 meet the criteria for materials reflecting the distribution of text types and genres required by the standards at each grade level. The whole group and read aloud texts include a mix of nonfiction and fictional texts with a variety of genres including folktales, science articles, how-to books, fantasy, social studies stories, and poems. Students are exposed to various texts throughout the program.

Examples of various fiction texts throughout the curriculum include:

  • Unit 1: Papa and Me by Arthur Durros- realistic fiction
  • Unit 2: The Daisy by Lada Josefa Kratky- folktale
  • Unit 3:Delivery by Anastasia Suen- poem
  • Unit 4: Ruby in her own Time by Jonathan Emmett- animal fantasy
  • Unit 5: For Pete’s Sake by Ellen Stoll Walsh- animal fantasy
  • Unit 6: A Year for Kiko by Ferida Wolff- realistic fiction
  • Unit 7: The Messy Invention by Carmen Osorio- historical fiction
  • Unit 8: Haiku” by Richard Wright- poem

Examples of various informational texts throughout the curriculum include:

  • Unit 1: Families in Many Cultures by Heather Adamson- photo book
  • Unit 2: "Michael Fay and the Giant Redwoods" by Gabrielle Burns- project notebook
  • Unit 3: "Markets" by Cassie Mayer- social studies article
  • Unit 4: "Turtles: From Eggs to Ocean" by Marlana Fuentes- science article
  • Unit 5: My Critter Cam Journal by Greg Marshall- photo journal
  • Unit 6: Chasing Storms with Tim Samaras by Jennifer Tetzloff- interview
  • Unit 7: "My Space Adventures" by Constance Adams- blog
  • Unit 8: "How to Make a Compass" by Michael DiSpezio- how-to article

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.
2/4
+
-
Indicator Rating Details

The instructional materials reviewed for Grade 1 partially 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.

Students listen to read alouds from the  Big Books and Interactive Read Alouds. Leveled books are used for Small Group Instruction. One read-aloud book is chosen each week relating to the concept of the unit provided. Many of the texts used for read aloud are not above the complexity levels of what most Grade 1 students can read independently. Many of the texts have Lexiles between 200 and 400 range according to the publisher. The Teacher Edition includes a Translation Key that shows the DRA, Lexile, and Reading Recovery levels.

Examples of read-aloud texts that are at the appropriate level for complexity include:

  • In Unit 3, students hear How did That Get in my Lunchbox? by Christ Butterworth which has a Lexile of 500-700 and qualitative features that are middle high.
  • In Unit 4, students hear What Do you Do with a Tail Like This? by Steve Jenkins and Robin Page which has a Lexile of 300-500. This text appears again in Unit 7. They also hear Farfallina and Marcel by Holly Keller, which has a Lexile of 550 according to Lexile.com, though the publisher lists this as a Lexile of 200-400. The qualitative features are middle low.
  • In Unit 6, students hear Storm is Coming by Heather Tekavec, which has a Lexile of 490, though it is listed as having a Lexile of 200-400. The qualitative features are middle low.
  • In Unit 8, students hear Follow that Map! by Scott Ritchie which has a Lexile of 590 and qualitative features of middle high and Larry Gets Lost in Seattle by John Skewes and Robert Schwartz which has a Lexile of 630 and qualitative features that are middle low. However, both texts are listed as having a Lexile of 200-400.

Examples of read aloud texts that fall below the appropriate text complexity level include:

  • In Unit 1, students hear Tortillas and Lullabies by Lynn Reiser and  Mystery Bottle by Kristen Balouch, both of which have a Lexile of 200-400. Both of these texts are listed as qualitatively low by the Publisher.
  • In Unit 2, students hear Life in the Forest by Theresa Volpe and Zina the Wooden Puppet by Honor Teoudoussia, both of which have a Lexile of 200-400. According to the publisher, both of the texts are qualitatively middle low.
  • In Unit 3, students hear Wen - Mel and her Clay Pot by Grace Lin, which has a Lexile of 200-400 and has qualitative features that are middle low according to the publisher.
  • In Unit 4, students hear Guess What I’ll Be by Anni Axworthy, which has a Lexile of 200-400 and qualitative features that are middle low.
  • In Unit 5, students hear A Bird Can Fly by Douglas Florian, which has a Lexile of 200 - 400 and qualitative features that are middle low.
  • In Unit 6, students hear Hey Ray! by Lada Josefa Kratky,  which has a Lexile of 200-400 and qualitative features that are middle low.
  • In Unit 7, students hear Grandma Bianca’s Blackout Barbecue by Argentina Palacios which has a Lexile of 200-400 and qualitative features that are low.

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 1 partially meet the criteria for materials supporting 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).

Instructional materials support some literacy skills over the course of the school year through increasingly complex texts to develop independence of grade level skills; however, the majority of the texts remain qualitatively low in complexity, not providing opportunities for students to develop independence.  Students are exposed to small group reading texts and individual decodables, but the whole class reading opportunities do not always provide exposure to rigorous and complex texts that would help them grow as a reader over the course of the school year. Small group reading texts range in level from A-J in terms of guided reading.

The majority of texts that students listen to in whole class over the course of the school year are read-alouds and close reading through the use of big books and interactive shared reading. The qualitative measures for most of these texts across the school year are listed with a qualitative label as “low” to “middle low” with occasional “middle high” labels. The quantitative measure for the read alouds vary and do not consistently grow over the course of the year. According to the publisher, almost all of the read alouds have Lexiles between 200-400 throughout the year.

Examples of texts with which students engage during whole group reading include:

  • In Unit 1, Week 2, students hear "The World is Your Family," a magazine article by Josh Thome labeled middle low. It is followed by "Garden," an email by Aria Gomez, also labeled middle low and identified for close reading. Both short texts include straightforward and basic information and require students to answer literal questions.
  • In Unit 2, Week 3, students read Zina, the Wooden Puppet by Honor Teoudoussia, a fairy tale about a girl puppet whose nose grows when she lies. The Teacher Edition identifies it to be used for close reading with a middle low label for its qualitative features. Reader tasks include identifying the plot components with literal responses, such as how does Zina save Habiba from a lion and how does the story end.
  • In Unit 3, Week 1, students hear Wei Mei and Her Clay Pot by Grace Lin, a fable that is also listed as middle low in terms of qualitative features. The text is a narrative that includes mostly literal or “extension” questions for children to answer.  There are some opportunities for students to work with more detail in this text, such as writing a T-chart to organize the text details around what Wei Mei is buying versus selling.
  • In Unit 5, Week 4, students hear "Greg Marshall and Crittercam," a science article by Jenna Kwon, listed as qualitatively middle low although it does provide a different writing voice for students to engage with as they learn about animals in motion underwater. The associated tasks are surface level, with the wrap-up question not being text-dependent. While this text will be engaging to students and is accompanied by vivid imagery and new information, in terms of students’ building reading comprehension, the text provides little opportunity to practice this skill since students do not have much opportunity to unpack its details or integrate new vocabulary.
  • In Unit 7, Week 3, students read Grandma Blanca’s Blackout Barbecue, a realistic fiction story by Argentina Palacios listed as qualitatively low. As with the previous close reading texts over the year, this text is interesting and provides a straightforward plot for students to understand. Associated questions are low level and literal, such as "What problem does the family have?" and visualization practice questions that are related to the text in an ancillary manner but not directly: "Use your sense to help you visualize what it was like when the lights came back on."

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.
1/2
+
-
Indicator Rating Details

The instructional materials reviewed for Grade 1 partially meet the criteria that anchor texts and series of texts connected to them are accompanied by a text complexity analysis and rationale for purpose and placement in the grade level.

The materials provide a qualitative measure in the form of Complexity Rubrics found under the Resource list tab; however, the rubrics do not share the rationale for why the specific text was chosen. Additionally, the qualitative measure provided is very broad such as middle low, with no explanation of what makes the text qualitatively middle low. The quantitative features are listed using Guided Reading Levels, DRA Ranges, and Lexile Ranges. The program materials give a general rationale for why all of the texts were chosen for the program, but none are specific. The materials state that the Student Editions include National Geographic content and authentic literature worth reading and rereading and that the units are four weeks long, built around a science or a social studies topic.

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 1 meet the criteria that anchor and 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.

Throughout the year, students engage in a broad range of text types and disciplines as well as a volume of reading to achieve grade-level reading proficiency. Throughout the week, students hear a read aloud and participate in small reading groups. There are also learning stations that students go to where students may listen to a text, read a text in unison with a group of other students, or read with a partner.  Students also read independently at various times throughout the week.

Students are exposed to a broad range of text types and disciplines throughout the year during read alouds, small groups, learning centers, and independent reading. Units have a shared reading and a close reading pairing each week with additional supplemental texts. There are also leveled readers related to the topic of each unit for small group and independent reading.

Examples of the various disciplines a student might listen to in various units include:

  • In Unit 1 students listen to or read:
    • Tortillas and Lullabies by Lynn Reiser realistic fiction
    • Families in Many Cultures by Heather Adamsonphoto book
    • "The World is Your Family" by Josh Thorne - magazine article
    • "Our Community Garden" by Aria Gomez - e-mail
    • Mystery Bottle by Kristen Balouchfantasy story
    • Papa and Me by Arthur Dorrosrealistic fiction
    • "Postcard Pals" by Jay Patel - postcard
  • In Unit 3, students hear or read:
    • Wen-Mei and Her Clay Pot by Grace Lin - fable
    • "Markets" by Cassie Mayer - social studies article
    • "Flower Power" by Stefanie Boron - online article
    • Special Delivery! by Geneva Martinez - humor story
    • Farfallina and Marcel by Holly Keller - animal fantasy
    • Ruby in Her Own Time by Jonathan Emmett - animal fantasy
    • "Turtles: From Eggs to Ocean" by Marlena Fuentes - science article
    • "A Frog’s Life" by Todd Silva - science article
  • In Unit 5, students hear or read:
    • What Do You Do With a Tail Like This? by Steve Jenkins and Robin Page - fact book
    • For Pete’s Sake by Ellen Stoll Walsh - animal fantasy
    • "Alligators" by Julie Larson - science article
    • "The World of Tide Pools" by Ben Keller - science article
    • A Bird Can Fly by Douglas Florian - fact book
    • Slither, Slide, Hop, and Run by Katharine Kenah - fact book
    • My Critter Cam Journal by Greg Marshall - photo journal
    • "Greg Marshall and Critter Cam" by Jenna Kwon - science article
  • In Unit 7, students hear or read:
    • Now and Ben by Gene Barretta - biography
    • "Communication Then and Now" by Robin Nelson - history article
    • "My Space Adventures" by Constance Adams - blog
    • "Life in Outer Space" by Kevin Hand - online article
    • Grandma Blanca’s Blackout Barbecue by Argentina Palacios - realistic fiction
    • A New Old Tune by Pat Comings - realistic fiction
    • "Invention Poems: Vacuum Cleaner" by Carles Mericle Harper - poem
    • The Messy Invention by Carmen Osorio - historical fiction story

Criterion 1g - 1n

Materials provide opportunities for rich and rigorous evidence-based discussions and writing about texts to build strong literacy skills.
13/16
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-
Criterion Rating Details

The instructional materials reviewed for Grade 1 partially meet the criteria for materials provide opportunities for rich and rigorous evidence-based discussions and writing about texts to build strong literacy skills. Most questions, tasks, and assignments are text-based and require students to draw on textual evidence to support both what is explicit, as well as valid inferences, from the text. Some culminating tasks refer back to the texts in the unit and require integration of skills to demonstrate understanding, but others do not require integration of skills and students could complete the tasks without understanding the texts and/or lessons in the unit. The materials provide practices and protocols for opportunities to discuss and interact with the curriculum content and vocabulary. Students have daily opportunities to practice speaking and listening; however, the practice opportunities are not always connected to the read-aloud text. Materials include multiple opportunities for both on-demand and process writing tasks that span the year’s worth of instruction and opportunities across the school year for students to learn, practice, and apply narrative, opinion, and informative writing are provided; however, the majority of the writing lessons focus on informative writing. Students have an opportunity to draw or write about the text that they listened to or the text that they read. Materials include explicit instruction of the grammar and conventions standards for the grade level.

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
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-
Indicator Rating Details

The instructional materials reviewed for Grade 1 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).

The materials include opportunities for students to discuss the text through text-dependent and text-specific questions. Students are asked specific questions related to the text and at times, are asked retell questions. These questions are found for both shared reading and decodable texts. Students are asked questions about the text, but also about the text features including the visuals.

Examples of text-dependent questions include:

  • In Unit 1, Week 2, students hear "The World is Your Family" and using the visuals, students determine the important message and explain why that message is important.
  • In Unit 2, Week 3, students hear Ant and the Grasshopper and answer what surprising event happens at the start of the story, how they know that Zina is not a real gift, and what happens when Zina lies.
  • In Unit 3, Week 3, students read the decodable book, The Egg Range, and answer what is the first thing that happens at the egg ranch, what do hens eat, and why do they think hens need nests.
  • In Unit 4, Week 1, students hear the story, Ruby in Her Own Time, and after the second reading, students answer if Mother Duck sits on the eggs for one day or many days and explain how they know. Similarly, they have to explain how Ruby is like Rufus, Rory, Rosie, and Rebecca.
  • In Unit 5, Week 3, after hearing Slither, Slide, Hop, and Run students share what they read about the sloth and what body parts the sloth has that helps it hold onto the tree.
  • In Unit 6, Week 1, students hear the story, I Face the Wind, and answer what is one effect of the strong wind and what the wind does to the trees.
  • In Unit 7, Week 4, students read the decodable book, Airplane, and answer what do all airplanes have, who flew the first airplane, and why did the 1920s pilots wear a heavy suit.
  • In Unit 8, Week 1, students read the decodable book, The Tallest Falls, and answer what happens when water reaches the end of a cliff, why does not much water reach the bottom of a waterfall, and how are waterfalls presented in the story the same and different.

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 1 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 tasks in Grade 1 are Unit Projects, some of which refer back to the texts in the unit and require integration of skills to demonstrate understanding, but others do not require integration of skills and students could complete without understanding the texts and/or lessons in the unit. At the end of each unit, students are given a choice to Write It!, Talk About It!, or Do It! to show their thinking about the Big Question from the unit. Students also have an end-of-unit assessment.

Examples of Unit Projects include:

  • In Unit 2, students either use what they learned in the unit to make a chart comparing living and nonliving things (Write It!), recall the fairy tale, Daisy, and makeup and tell their own tale (Talk About it!), or share something they remember about a character from one of the texts, and then create a puppet and use it to perform a puppet show (Do It!). Some of these options are text-dependent and others do not require students to integrate skills to demonstrate their understanding.
  • In Unit 3, the Big Question is "How do we get what we need?", and the three options are to create a T-Chart with a partner and list things we buy and things that are free (Write It!), write a poem using the poem provided about things we need and want (Talk About It!), or cut pictures out of magazines of things the students want or need and label them (Do It!).
  • In Unit 4, students learn about how animals grow and are given the option of drawing a sequence chain that shows how an animal grows (Write It!), pointing to diagrams and photos in the unit and asking before and after questions about the sequence (Talk About It!), or drawing images of a caterpillar, a butterfly, and a pupa inside of a chrysalis and taking turns putting them in order to show how a caterpillar changes into a butterfly (Do It!).
  • In Unit 6, students learn all about weather and are asked to draw a picture of a story and write one or two sentences about the storm (Write It!), give a weather report to a group (Talk About It!), or make a fan, kite, or other type of air mover and explain how the invention works (Do It!). All three options do not require students to integrate skills from the unit to demonstrate their understanding and learning from the unit.
  • In Unit 8, students study maps and are given the option of choosing two states on a map and then moving their fingers from one state to another and identify whether they are moving north, south, east or west (Do It!), hiding an object and giving directions to a partner to find it (Talk About It!), or drawing a map of their neighborhood (Write It!). While all three options reinforce skills that students learned, it does not require students to demonstrate their understanding of the texts nor does it require a sequence of text-dependent questions to complete these tasks.

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.
2/2
+
-
Indicator Rating Details

The instructional materials reviewed for Grade 1 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 practices and protocols for opportunities to discuss and interact with the curriculum content and vocabulary. The Best Practices Routines, speaking and listening protocols, are located in the front of the Teacher Guide. There are protocols for partner discussions, group conversations, and presentations. Clear directions and protocols are provided and supported by the Academic Talk Flip Chart. Group conversations are scaffolded with roles that are clearly defined and supported with sentence stems to help students fulfill their role in the discussion.

The partner discussion protocol includes sentences stems and opportunities for each partner to talk. The group conversation protocol includes roles for each student including a facilitator, encourager, timekeeper, and note taker. There are also sentence stems to help students with the discussion. At the end of the discussion, the class comes back together and a few students share what their groups discussed.

The presentation protocols are outlines for students and include criteria such as stand up tall, speak clearly and loud enough for everyone to hear, and introduce the presentation. The protocol also includes directions for listeners such as listen attentively, ask questions if you do not understand something, and make eye contact. The Cooperative Learning suggestions in the text also provide support for partner and group discussion configurations that can be used with the protocols.

Examples of opportunities for evidence-based discussions include, but are not limited to:

  • In Unit 1, Week 3, Day 4, the students use the 3-Step Interview process to share with each other and report to the class what their partner shared describing the settings in the story without giving the actual location. They predict where the characters from the story will go next. The teacher reminds the students to take turns speaking and listening to each other.
  • In Unit 2, Week 1, Day 2, the Academic Talk section has students discuss living and nonliving things using the Inside-Outside Circle technique to talk about facts they learned in Life in the Forest. Students on the inside of the circle use keywords such as eat, drink, and alive to share what they have learned about living and nonliving things.
  • In Unit 4, Week 4, Day 5, the Academic Talk section directs the teacher to split the students into three groups (one for each of the three texts: Delivery, Money, and Farmers Get a Chance) to prepare for a Jigsaw activity. Children recall what each text was about and discuss the main idea of the text.
  • In Unit 5, Week 1, Day 2, students use the Jigsaw technique to talk about different animal body parts. Each expert group is assigned one body part: nose, tail, feet, and mouth. The groups think of animals they have read about and seen with the body part. Students use the keywords from the week, including alike, body, different, feature, and look.  The experts report back to the group after their discussions. The Teacher Guide reminds the teacher to remind students to listen attentively to what the other  student experts say.

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 1 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.

Students practice their speaking and listening daily, though it is not always connected to the texts that they listen to in read alouds. Many of the specific opportunities come before the text is read during a vocabulary lesson or at the very end of the lesson as a wrap-up for all the skills taught during the day. While students do hear the texts and follow-up questions are provided that could provide support for speaking and listening, it is not specified for teachers.

Examples of opportunities for students to practice their speaking and listening, though not always in conjunction with a text, include:

  • In Unit 3, Week 4, Day 3, the Wrap Up Activity has students discuss the work done by farmers and the tools needed to do this work. This comes after hearing the read aloud and answering comprehension questions. However, there is no protocol or direction in how this should be discussed.
  • In Unit 6, Week 2, Day 3, as students are preparing to read the folktale, The Story of Lightning and Thunder, they engage in a Preview and Prediction activity. They preview the cover of the folktale and have the title read aloud to them and then are asked what they think this story is about and why. This comes before the text is read, but no specific directions are given.
  • In Unit 7, Week 3, Day 5, students work with partners to answer questions using the week’s Key Words in their response to the text: "What was Max helping Aunt Nell do? How are Max and Aunt Nell the same?"
  • In Unit 8, Week 1, Day 5, the Wrap Up Activity has students review the contents of their weekly folder and then form heterogeneous groups to discuss the Big Question of the week, "Why do we need maps?" The teacher circulates among groups, asking prompting questions, such as "What kind of information can you get from a map?"

Indicator 1k

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

The instructional materials reviewed for Grade 1 meet the criteria for materials including a mix of on-demand and process writing (e.g. multiple drafts, revisions over time) and short, focused projects, incorporating digital resources where appropriate.

Materials include multiple opportunities for both on-demand and process writing tasks that span the year’s worth of instruction. Students regularly write in class, either in response to the text or by using the text as a model. In each unit, during Week 4, there is a different writing project that spans throughout the week to teach the students about the writing process.

Students engage in many on-demand writing assignments including responding to texts. Examples of this include:

  • In Unit 1, Week 4, Day 5,  students write a sentence about their home or any place. Students illustrate the sentence and then each sentence gets assembled into a class book.
  • In Unit 2, Week 2 Day 1, students work in small groups to discuss reasons that they know a hat is nonliving. They then write a sentence about why a hat is nonliving and illustrate their sentence.
  • In Unit 3, Week 2, Day 2, students work in pairs to write one question to ask Cid Simoes and Paola Segura in Flower Power.
  • In Unit 5, Week 2, Day 3, students write a sentence telling why they would or would not like to explore a tide pool. Students are encouraged to use the Key Words in their Sentences.
  • In Unit 8, Week 2, Day 2, students write a Haiku about a neighborhood after reading Haikus in class.

Students also engage in some writing projects that occur over the course of the week. These occur during Week 4 in the units. For example:

  • In Unit 2, Week 4, students organize and write a how-to article over the course of the week. After studying a model, students prewrite using a graphic organizer. Then students draft, revise, edit, publish and present their articles.
  • In Unit 4, Week 4, students write a story with a beginning, middle, and end. They begin by studying a model and then prewrite using a graphic organizer. Students then draft their story, revise and edit their work, and finally publish and present their story.
  • In Unit 6, Week 4, students work to write an expository paragraph. They begin by reading an exemplar and then brainstorm using a cause and effect chart. Students then draft, edit and revise, and finally publish and present their paragraphs.
  • In Unit 7, Week 4, students organize and write a descriptive letter using the writing process. They study and analyze a model, then plan using a graphic organizer. Students then write their letter, check their work, and finish their letter and share it with the class.

Students also write during their small group reading time. They are given some on-demand choices such as:

  • In Unit 1, students can either create a book page or write a journal entry.
  • In Unit 2, students can either write a description or write a journal entry.

Indicator 1l

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

The instructional materials reviewed for Grade 1 partially 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.

The materials provide opportunities across the school year for students to learn, practice, and apply narrative, opinion, and informative/expository writing; however, the majority of writing lessons focus on informative writing.  Narrative writing focuses on process writing and students have few opportunities for opinion writing.

Each week focuses on a different writing genre, sometimes aligned to the text. Model writing samples and other instructional supports accompany each unit. A longer writing assignment is assigned in each unit that spans the course of a week. Each of these is a different writing genre.

Examples of narrative writing include:

  • In Unit 3, Week 2, students write a humorous story.
  • In Unit 4, Week 4, students write a true story about something that happened to them when they were growing up.
  • In Unit 7, Week 4, students write a different point of view of the story they read.
  • In Unit 8, Week 1, students write a class story about what happens next to the character in their story. Students each draw a picture to accompany the class story and then write a sentence or two about their picture.

Examples of expository writing include:

  • In Unit 1, Week 3, students write a sentence about a park or street that they know.
  • In Unit 2, Week 2, students work in groups and choose a living thing or a nonliving thing. They create a poster with a picture of the thing they have chosen, list facts about it, and then write adjectives to describe its size, shape, and color.
  • In Unit 3, Week 3, students write a thank you letter to a family member.
  • In Unit 4, Week 1, students write about how animals grow.
  • In Unit 6, Week 1, students write about the effects of wind.
  • In Unit 7, Week 4, students also write a friendly letter to a friend about something from the past.

Examples of opinion writing include:

  • In Unit 7, Week 2, students work in groups to find an opinion in their text, My Space Adventures, and then write a restatement of the opinion that they might share with friends or family using the past tense.

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 instructional materials reviewed for Grade 1 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.

Students have an opportunity to draw or write about the text that they listened to or read. In each unit, students write about the text by being given sentence frames or vocabulary words to include in their sentences. Many opportunities require students to work with a partner or a group and at times, the teacher works with the whole class to create a larger writing piece, such as a summary.

Examples of this include:

  • In Unit 1, Week 2, students read a magazine article and then use the sentence frame, “We want to know more about ______. One thing we want to know is ______.” They use these sentence frames to write about people in the magazine article that they read.
  • In Unit 2, Week 3, students write about the character Zina from their read aoud. They will write one sentence that describes her as a puppet, and then another sentence that describes her as a real girl.
  • In Unit 3, Week 1, students write about the message or lesson in the fable. They are given three sentence frames to complete this writing task.
  • In Unit 4, Week 1, students write about the characters in Ruby in Her Own Time by Jonathan Emmett. They use sentence frames, such as "How do we know that Mother Duck and Father Duck feel that Ruby is special?"
  • In Unit 5, Week 2, half of the students write the main idea of World of Tidepools, and the other half write the details. They use these to write a collective summary.
  • In Unit 6, Week 2, students compare the two characters’ experiences from Wind Eagle and The Story of Lightning and Thunder and then write one or two sentences about their experiences.
  • In Unit 7, Week 3, students write one or two sentences about how a character in Grandma Blanca’s Blackout Barbecue reminds them of someone they know.
  • In Unit 8, Week 3, groups of students write the story of Larry’s adventures after hearing Larry Gets Lost in Seattle. Each student writes two sentences about Larry’s adventures in one location and then gives the paper to the next child.

Indicator 1n

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

The instructional materials reviewed for Grade 1 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.

In each week of each unit, there is a five-day grammar lesson sequence. The lessons begin with finding the grammar skill in text. The teacher then introduces the skill and the rule. On Day 4, there is a writing activity where the teacher models the skill in writing. The skill is often practiced using a Practice Master.  Additionally, in Ready, Set..., materials provide opportunities for students to review all 26 letters (upper- and lowercase) for letter formation.

Students have opportunities to print all upper- and lowercase letters. For example:

  • In Ready, Set, Week 1, Day 1, m, s, f, and h letter formation are reviewed and produced by students.
  • BP41 through BP44 is the Scripts for Letter Formation for all lower and uppercase letters.

Students have opportunities to use common and proper nouns. For example:

  • In Unit 1, Week 1, Day 1, the teacher explains that a noun names a person, place, or thing. The teacher reads a Big Book and points out the common nouns as the book is read.
  • In Unit 1, Week 2, Day 2, students identify common nouns in “The World is Your Family.”
  • In Unit 1, Week 3, Day 1, the teacher introduces proper nouns and explains that they begin with a capital letter. On Day 2, the teacher explain that proper nouns name special people and animals. On Day 3, the teacher introduces proper nouns that name special places. On Day 4, the teacher models common and proper noun usage in writing. On Day 5, the teacher assesses students identification of common and proper nouns.

Students have opportunities to use singular and plural nouns with matching verbs in basic sentences. For example:

  • In Unit 1, Week 1, Day 2, the teacher introduces singular and plural nouns. The teacher explains that most plural nouns end with -s.
  • In Unit 1, Week 2, Day 2, the students identify plural nouns on page 30 of their Anthologies and identify whether the noun has an -s or -es. The teacher reviews the rules for using -s and -es.

Students have opportunities to use personal, possessive, and indefinite pronouns. For example:

  • In Unit 4, Week 2, Day 1, the teacher reviews the personal pronoun I and introduces the rule for personal pronoun me. On Day 2, the teacher introduces personal pronoun she and her. On Day 3, the teacher introduces personal pronoun it, they and them.
  • In Unit 4, Week 3, Day 1, the teacher introduces singular possessive pronouns and how they are formed. On Day 2, the teacher introduces plural possessive pronouns and how they are formed. On Day 3, the teacher introduces subject-verb agreement with indefinite pronouns and teaches the rule. On Day 4, the teacher models the use of indefinite pronouns in writing.
  • In Unit 5, Week 4, Day 1, the teacher introduces singular indefinite pronouns, teaches the rule and explains that singular indefinite pronouns do not refer to a specific person or thing but refers to any person or thing. On Day 2, the teacher introduces plural indefinite pronouns and then teaches the rule.

Students have opportunities to use verbs to convey a sense of past, present, and future. For example:

  • In Unit 3, Week 1, Day 2, the teacher points out present tense verbs in the Big Book. The teacher then introduces present tense verbs. The teacher and students complete the Practice Master together. Week 2 continues work with present tense verbs in the five-day grammar focus.
  • In Unit 7, Week 1, Day 1, the teacher points out past tense verbs in the Big Book. The teacher explains that past tense verbs tell about an event that happened in the past. The teacher tells about the rule that you can add -ed to a verb to show that it already happened. On Day 2 and Day 3, the teacher explains how the based word can change when adding -ed. For example, stop to stopped and carry to carried.
  • In Unit 7, Week 4, Day 1, the teacher points out the future tense verbs in the Big Book. The teacher introduces the future tense and explains that one way to talk about the future is to add the word will in front of the verb.

Students have opportunities to use frequently occurring adjectives. For example:

  • In Unit 2, Week 1, Day 1, the teacher points out adjectives in the Big Book as it is read aloud. The teacher explains that adjectives describe or tell about a noun. On Day 4, the teacher models the use of adjectives to make writing more interesting. In Week 2, students learn that adjectives can tell age, size, color and shape. They also learn that adjectives can have shades of meaning. On Day 5, the teacher models using the adjectives in writing.

Students have opportunities to use frequently occurring conjunctions. For example:

  • In Unit 7, Week 3, Day 1, the teacher introduces the use of the conjunction because to join two simple sentences. On Day 2, the teacher introduces the use of the conjunctions before and after to join sentences. On Day 3, the teacher reviews expanding sentences using the conjunctions because, before, and after. On Day 4, the teacher models using the conjunctions to expand sentences in writing.

Students have opportunities to use determiners. For example:

  • In Unit 2, Week 1, Day 2, the teacher introduces the determiners this and that. On Day 3, the teacher introduces the plural determiners these and those.

Students have opportunities to use frequently occurring prepositions. For example:

  • In Unit 8, Week 4, Day 1, the teacher introduces prepositions and teaches the rules using location of items in the classroom. On Day 2, the teacher introduces prepositions of direction and teaches the rules. On Day 3, the teacher introduces prepositions of time. On Day 4, the teacher models the use of prepositions in writing.

Students have opportunities to produce and expand complete simple and compound declarative, interrogative, imperative, and exclamatory sentences in response to prompts. For example:

  • In Unit 5, Week 3, Day 2, the teacher introduces exclamatory sentences and then teaches the rule that it expresses strong emotion and ends in an exclamation point. On Day 3, the teacher explains how to expand command and exclamatory sentences by adding words to the naming and telling part. On Day 4, the teacher models the use of end marks in command and exclamatory sentences.
  • In Unit 6, Week 1, Day 1, the teacher reminds students that a simple sentence has one subject and one predicate, then introduces compound sentences that use and. On Day 2, the teacher introduces compound sentences that use but. On Day 3, the teacher introduces the compound sentences that use or. On Day 4, the teacher models the use of compound sentences to avoid choppy writing.
  • In Unit 6, Week 2, Day 1, the teacher introduces students to question sentences that can be answered with yes or no. The teacher explains that question sentences end with a question mark. On Day 2, the teacher introduces information sentences and explain that they can begin with who or what. On Day 3, the teacher explains that information sentences can also begin with where or when. On Day 4, the teacher models the use of question sentences in writing.
  • In Unit 6, Week 4, Day 3, the teacher explains how to make compound question sentences using and or or.

Students have opportunities to capitalize dates and names of people. For example:

  • In Unit 1, Week 4, Day 2, the teacher introduces the capitalization of dates and teaches the rule.

Students have opportunities to use end punctuation for sentences. For example:

  • In Unit 5, Week 2, Day 1, the teacher explains that a sentence has a naming part, a telling part, begins with a capital letter and ends with an end mark.

Students have opportunities to use commas in dates and to separate single words in a series. For example:

  • In Unit 1, Week 4, Day 4, the teacher introduces the use of commas in dates and then teaches the rules. On Day 5, the teacher models writing dates. Students complete the Practice Master.

Students have opportunities to use conventional spelling for words with common spelling patterns and for frequently occurring irregular words. For example:

  • In Unit 8, Week 4, Day 2, during the Phonics portion of the lesson students practice writing words with C plus -le. The teacher says a sentence. The students write the sentence. The teacher writes the sentence on the board and students check and correct their spelling.

Students have opportunities to spell untaught words phonetically, drawing on phonemic awareness and spelling conventions. For example:

  • In Unit 8, Week 3, Day 3, students write a sentence that the teacher repeats several times during the Spell Words with prefixes un- and re-. The teacher writes the sentence on the board. The students check and correct their spelling.

Criterion 1o - 1t

Materials in reading, writing, speaking, listening, and language targeted to support foundational reading development are aligned to the standards.
18/22
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Criterion Rating Details

The instructional materials reviewed for Grade 1 meet the criteria for materials in reading, writing, speaking, listening, and language targeted to support foundational reading development are aligned to the standards. Students have opportunities to learn and practice phonological and phonics skills; however, some phonics skills are not taught until the final unit of instruction and there are no phonological opportunities to distinguish long and short vowels, although there are opportunities for students to hear short vowels and change out for r-controlled vowel sounds in the medial sound. Some opportunities for students to practice and gain decoding automaticity and sight-based recognition of high frequency words are included. The materials, questions, and tasks provide systematic and explicit instruction in and practice of word recognition and analysis skills. Assessments monitor progress and inform instruction throughout the year, and the materials, questions, and tasks provide high-quality lessons and activities that allow for differentiation 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 instructional materials reviewed for Grade 1 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 materials contain opportunities for students to learn Grade 1 phonological awareness and phonics. Within the materials are routines for phonological awareness, dictation, and decoding. Phonological Awareness is practiced Days 1-4 during Learn Sounds, Letters, and Words, which contains twelve routines for phonological awareness. Some phonics skills such as reading two-syllable words and reading words with inflected endings are not taught until Unit 8, which is the last unit. Additionally, there are no phonological opportunities to distinguish long and short vowels, although there are opportunities for students to hear short vowels and change out for r-controlled vowel sounds in the medial sound.

Students have frequent opportunities to learn and understand phonemes (e.g. distinguish long and short vowels, blend sounds, pronounce vowels in single-syllable words, and segment single-syllable words).

Examples include:

  • In Unit 1, Week 1, Day 1, students learn to isolate initial sounds. The teacher uses Phonological Awareness Routine 1. Students listen for the beginning sound. The teacher says cat. The students repeat. The teacher segments the sounds and asks, “What is the first sound you hear?”
  • In Unit 1, Week 1, Day 3, the teacher uses Phonological Awareness Routine 2. The teacher says dad and segments dad. Students place chips on sound boxes. The teacher shows how to blend the sounds by sweeping under the boxes.
  • In Unit 2, Week 3, Day 1, the teacher uses Phonological Awareness Routine 1. The teachers says visit. Students repeat. The teacher segments the word and asks,  “What is the last sound you hear?”
  • In Unit 2, Week 1, Day 1, the teacher uses Phonological Awareness Routine 3. The teacher states the word yam and segments the sounds. The teacher repeats the word slowly. Students say the sounds with the teacher and place a chip in their sound boxes. The teacher asks: “How many chips did you put on your board? How many sounds did you say and hear?”
  • In Unit 2, Week 1, Days 3, the teacher uses Phonological Awareness Routine 1. The teacher has students listen for the medial sound in mug and cup. Students identify the sound.
  • In Unit 4, Week 2, Day 3, the teacher uses Phonological Awareness Routine 7. The teacher says flamingo. The teacher claps the syllables. Students clap the syllables. Students count the syllables.
  • In Unit 4, Week 2, Day 4, the teacher uses Phonological Awareness Routines 7 and 8. The teacher says and claps the syllables for eating. Students count the syllables and combine the syllables.
  • In Unit 7, Week 1, Day 1, the teacher uses Phonological Awareness Routine 6. The teacher states the word duck. The teacher segments the sounds. The teacher suggests changing the vowel. The teacher states: “What is the new word?”

Lessons and activities provide students opportunities to learn grade-level phonics skills while decoding words (e.g. spelling-sound correspondences of digraphs, decode one-syllable words, know final-e and long vowels, syllable and vowel relationship). For example:

  • In Unit 1, students participate in phonics lessons which are review of the following letters and sounds: short /a/ with m, s, h, t; words with f, n, l, p; short /i/; short /o/; words with b, w, j, z; and short /e/.
  • In Unit 2, students participate in more phonics review lessons of the following letters and sounds: words with y, qu, x, k, s.
  • In Unit 2, Week 1, students learn -ck and -ng. On Day 2, students sort word cards with -ck, -ng, and double consonants.
  • In Unit 3, Week 3, students learn the following digraphs: ch, tch, and th. On Day 2, students sort Word Cards into piles based on the digraph the word contains.
  • In Unit 3, Week 4, students learn wh and sh. On Day 2, students sort Word Cards into piles based on the digraph the word contains.
  • In Unit 4, Week 2, Day 1, the teacher uses Decoding Routine 1 to teach should and spellings for i_e. Students decode the words nine, bike, smile, dime, prize.
  • In Unit 5, Week 1, Day 1, the teacher uses Decoding Routine 1 to teach sound and spellings /s/ce, ci_. In Step 3, the teacher shows students how to blend words with ce and nce. Students learn to read ice, mice, nice, pace, place, prince, price.
  • In Unit 6, Week 1, Day 1, students learn the long /o/ with oa, and ow. Using Decoding Routine 1, the teacher builds phonological awareness by saying words with long /o/. The teacher shows Sound Spelling Card 32 and says ocean. Students also say ocean and the long /o/. Students learn to blend words with long /o/ such as soap, mow, glow, road, goal.
  • In Unit 8, Week 4, Day 1, students learn the -le syllable pattern for two syllable words. The teacher states: “These longer words have two syllables. Clap the syllables with me as we say each word.” Students learn to decode battle, dazzle, poodle, table.
  • In Unit 8, Week 4, Day 3, students learn the VCV to decode two syllable words such as tiger and relay. The teacher states: “When a word is divided before the consonant, the vowel in the first syllable usually has a long sound: ti-ger. When a word is divided after the consonant, the vowel in the first syllable usually has a short vowel sound: lem-on.” Students decode travel, spider, cabin.
  • In Unit 8, Week 1, Day 3, students learn the following inflected endings: -es, -ed, -ing. First, the teacher builds students phonological awareness of words with inflected endings. Second, the teacher introduces the sound/spelling. Third, the teacher shows how to blend the endings to the words. Students read words, such as hums, hummed, humming.

Materials have a cohesive sequence of phonemic awareness instruction to build toward application. For example:

  • In Unit RS, there is a week of review of phonological awareness from Kindergarten. Students relearn to identify and distinguish rhyme, to identify and combine syllables, and to segment and match syllables.
  • In Unit 1, students learn to isolate initial sounds, isolate final sounds, and blend sounds.
  • In Unit 2, students learn to segment sounds, match and isolate medial sounds, and add sounds.
  • In Unit 3, students learn to add initial sounds, add final sounds, delete initial and final sounds, and substitute initial sounds.
  • In Unit 4, students learn to delete initial and final sounds, count syllables, substitute medial sounds, substitute initial sounds, and substitute final sounds.
  • In Unit 5, students learn to substitute initial sounds, substitute final sounds, add final sounds, and count and combine syllables.
  • In Unit 6, students learn to substitute medial sounds, combine and segment syllables, blend sounds, and delete second sounds from blends.  
  • In Unit 7, students learn to substitute medial sounds, blend sounds, combine and segment syllables, substitute final sounds, and substitute vowel sounds.

Materials have a cohesive sequence of phonics instruction to build toward application. For example:

  • In Unit 1, students learn short /a/ words with m, s, h, t; words with f, n, l, p; short /i/, short /o/; words with b, w, j, x; and short /e/.
  • In Unit 2, students learn words with y, qu, x, k, s; short /u/; double final consonants; endings -ck and -ng; l blends; and words with r blends.
  • In Unit 3, students learn words with blends s; endings -s, -ing, -ed; final blends; digraphs ch, tch, th; digraphs wh, sh.
  • In Unit 4, students learn long /a/, long /i/, long /o/, digraph ph; long /u/; and long /e/.
  • In Unit 5, students learn words with soft /c/ and /g/; words with -y, -s; endings -es, -ies; digraphs ai and oy; digraphs ee, ea, ie; and endings -ed and -ing.
  • In Unit 6, students learn words with oa, ow, -old; compound words; words ie, igh; syllables; words with oo, ou, ew, ue, ui, u_e; and words with au, aw, alk, oo, ea.
  • In Unit 7, students learn words with ar, kn, wr, gn, mb; words with or, ore; words with ir, er, ur; and words with air, _ear, _are, eer, ear.
  • In 8, students learn words with al, all; endings -es, ed, -ing; diphthongs oi, oy, ou, ow, suffixes -ful, -less, -er, prefixes un-, re-; final syllable C + -le; and VCV syllables.

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 instructional materials reviewed for Grade 1 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 materials contain opportunities for students to learn and practice concepts of print, text structures, and text features. In the Ready, Set…, there are concepts of prints opportunities. In the main materials, there are lessons for text structures and text features.

Materials include some lessons and tasks/questions about the organization of print concepts (e.g. recognize features of a sentence). For example:

  • In Unit RS, Week 2, Day 1, the teacher shows students the following sentence: “This is how to pick a pepper.” The teacher asks students to identify the first word in the sentence. The teacher asks: “How is this word different from the other words?” The teacher explains that the first word in a sentence is capitalized. Students do not have the opportunity to find capitalization at the beginning of sentences and show their understanding of first word capitalization except in the Prerequisite Foundational Skills form on RS 38.
  • In Unit RS, Week 2, Days 2, the teacher shows students the following sentence: “I can see a snake in the sand.” The teacher explains that a sentence has to have a punctuation mark. Students are to point to periods in the text. Students also learn an exclamation point and question mark.
  • In Unit 6, Week 2, Day 5, during Grammar Review, the teacher shows students the Grammar Rules box about the four types of sentences. Students have to identify types of sentences based the type of ending punctuation.

Students have frequent and adequate opportunities to identify text structures (e.g. main idea and details, sequence of events, problem and solution, compare and contrast, cause and effect). For example:

  • In Unit 4, Week 3, students learn to identify main idea and details. The teacher shows a Main Idea and Details Chart to model recording main idea and details. The teacher asks questions, such as “What is the main idea of pages 4-7? What are some details you learn about a walrus?”
  • In Unit 5, Week 1, Day 1, students learn to compare and contrast.
  • In Unit 5, Week 2, Day 2, students learn how to identify main idea and details in a text. The teacher defines main idea and details: “The main idea is what the text is mostly about. Details tell more about the main idea.” The teacher points to a section title and asks, “What is the title of this section?” The teacher explains how a section title helps to identify the main idea.
  • In Unit 6, Week 1, students learn about cause and effect. On Day 1, the teacher states, “An effect is what happens, and a cause is why something happens.”
  • In Unit 8, Week 3, students learn to identify problem and solution. The teacher explains problem and solution. The teacher shows a problem-and-solution chart and models filling the chart in based on “Jack and the Hike.”
  • In Unit 8, Week 2, students learn about elements of poetry. Students learn that poetry has rhythm and rhyming. For a text called “Haiku”, students are asked, "How many syllables does each line have? How many lines does 'Haiku' have?"

Materials include frequent and adequate lessons and activities about text features (e.g. title, byline, headings, table of contents, glossary, pictures, illustrations).

  • In Unit RS, Week 2, Day 4, students learn about title, author, and illustrator. The teacher points out those features and has children find the titles, authors’ names, and illustrators’ names.
  • In Unit RS, Week 2, Day 5, students learn about page numbers and table of contents. The teacher explains page numbers and has students point to page numbers. The teacher shows students the table of contents of Sing with Me Phonics Songs Book and states, “The table of contents tells the parts of a book and what page each part starts on.” The teacher asks students to use the table of contents to find page numbers for “The Alphabet Song” and “ABC Sound Song.”
  • In Unit 4, Week 2, students learn to use text features with the text Turtles: From Eggs to Ocean. On Day 2, students learn to use photos and captions.

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 instructional materials reviewed for Grade 1 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.

Opportunities to practice fluency are included daily, although the opportunities are not in-depth fluency lessons. On Days 1, 3, and 5, the teacher materials suggest students read a decodable text from NGReach.com and use Fluency Routine 2 to read the text. On Days 2 and 4, the teacher materials suggest students reread the Read on Your Own Book to check accuracy and rate. On many Day 3s, the teacher models the fluency focus such as intonation, expression, and phrasing. There are four Fluency Routines used in the materials. High Frequency Word instruction and practice is included in Days 1-4 with assessment on Day 5.

There are some opportunities provided over the course of the year in core materials for students to purposefully read on-level text. For example:

  • In Unit 1, Week 1, Day 3, the teacher sets a purpose by stating, “I read that families of many sizes live all over the world. I see a picture of family members and a map of the world. Who are these people in this family? What are these people doing together?”
  • In Unit 1, Week 2, Day 1, the teacher sets a purpose for reading and asks, “How do you decide what movie you would like to see? Why would you like to see a particular movie?” The teacher reads aloud the title of the magazine article and asks, “How does previewing give you ideas about what you will find out? What is your purpose for reading this magazine?”
  • In Unit 4, Week 1, Day 1, the teacher displays and reads the Share a Story on Big Book pages 2-3. The teacher states the purpose: “Let’s read to find out how Farfallina and Marcel grow and change.”

Multiple 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 decodable words. For example:

  • In Unit 3, Week 1, Day 1, the teacher explains intonation: “Fluent readers raise and lower their voices as they read text. When you read, try to sound like you’re reading to a friend.” Students read a sentence without intonation and then students read with a lively voice. The teacher asks which reading sounds more natural. The teacher models reading the text with intonation.
  • In Unit 4, Week 3, Day 1, the teacher explains phrasing: “When reading aloud, the fluent readers read groups of words together rather than reading one word at a time. And they pause between phrases.” The teacher models reading the text and then students read along with the teacher and use proper phrasing.
  • In Unit 6, Unit 1, Day 1, the teacher explains expression: “Fluent readers raise and lower their voice to show expression. A reader’s voice may rise to emphasize dialogue, a question, or an exclamation.” The teacher models reading a character’s words with expression. The teacher asks students if they noticed places where the teacher’s voice changed. Students chorally read page 9 and then students reread the sheep’s words using expression.

Materials do not fully support reading of texts with attention to reading strategies such as rereading, self-correction, and the use of context clues. Explanation to the teacher as to how to teach reading strategies is not always specific besides general directions such as monitor for miscues and prompt self-correction. The Corrective Feedback Routine can be used to assist the teacher in providing feedback to the student. For example:

  • In Unit 1, Week 4, Day 2, students read the decodable text, “My Mother at Work.” Students are to whisper read. The teacher is to monitor for miscues and prompt self-correction. If students cannot self-correct, the teacher is to provide corrective feedback.
  • In Unit 4, Week 3, Day 2, in Check & Reteach, the objective states, “Read Decodable Texts Fluently and with Comprehension.” Each student is to read aloud a page from “The Mole.” The teacher is to note the reading speed and miscues. Students with low reading speeds should use partner reading or the Comprehension Coach to build automaticity. The teacher is to use ReTeaching Routine 1 for one-on-one reteaching for miscues.
  • In Unit 7, Week 3, Day 2, students whisper read the decodable text, “Time Savers and Other Helpers.” The teacher is to monitor for miscues and prompt self-correction. If students cannot self-correct, the teacher is to provide corrective feedback.

Students have opportunities to practice and read irregularly spelled words. For example:

  • In Unit 3, Week 1, Day 4, the teacher models pronouncing the High Frequency Words for the week. Pairs of students are to say the words three times as the teacher points to the words on the Word Wall. The High Frequency Words are go, great, one, saw, want, would.
  • In Unit 6, Week 2, Day 1, the teacher reads aloud page 3 to teach the high frequency words. The teacher uses High Frequency Words Routine 1: “Say the High Frequency Word, Say a sentence with the word, say the word again and have children repeat it and then write it.” Students track the print and echo as the teacher reads aloud. Student work in partners to read the sentence and spell the High Frequency Words: above, again, away, change, seven, sometimes.
  • In Unit 8, Week 4, Day 1, students repeat the high frequency word, something, and say a sentence with the high frequency word. Students write the word something.

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.
4/4
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Indicator Rating Details

The instructional materials reviewed for Grade 1 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 materials include opportunities for students to read and write words based on a word pattern. Students read decodable texts that focus on the word pattern each week. Students also read and write high-frequency words. Students read decodable texts that contain high-frequency words.

Materials support students’ development of learning grade-level word recognition and analysis skills (e.g. spelling-sound correspondences of digraphs, decode one-syllable words, syllable, and vowel relationship, decode two-syllable words, read words with inflectional endings) in connected text and tasks. For example:

  • In Unit 3, Week 4, Day 2, students read the decodable text, “Rubber” by Dee Wallis. Students decode words with the digraph wh in the text, such as when, whiz, when, and whiff.
  • In Unit 4, Week 3, Day 2, students read the decodable text, “The Mole” by Carlos Santos. Students decode words with the o_e in the text, such as mole, nose, those, and home.
  • In Unit 6, Week 1, Day 4, students read the decodable text, “The Wind and the Sun” by Winston White. Students decode words with compound words, such as raincoat, sunglasses, hilltop, and roadside.
  • In Unit 7, Week 4, Day 2, students read the decodable text, “Airplane!” by Ann Corey. Students decode words with air, _ear, _are in the text, such as airplane, aircraft, pairs, airmail, fare, airlines, wears and rare.

Materials provide frequent opportunities to read irregularly spelled words in connected text and tasks. For example:

  • In Unit 3, Week 1, Day 3, students use Word Builder on NGReach.com to build a sentence based on a partner’s question. The teacher is to encourage students to use a High Frequency Word in each question and answer.
  • In Unit 3, Week 3, Day 2, students read the decodable text, The Egg Ranch by Donovan Brock. Students read seven high-frequency words in the text.
  • In Unit 4, Week 2, Day 2, students read high-frequency words in sentences. When students recognize a high-frequency word in a sentence, students touch their nose.
  • In Unit 5, Week 2, Day 2, students read the decodable text, Not the Same by Dee Wallis. Students read high-frequency words, such as animals, most, group, and move in context.
  • In Unit 8, Week 4, Day 2, students read the decodable text, Animal Puzzles by Gloria Rodriquez. Students read high-frequency words, such as city, yellow, answer, often.

Lessons and activities provide students many opportunities to learn grade-level word recognition and analysis skills while encoding (writing) in context and decoding words (reading) in connected text and tasks. For example:

  • In Unit 3, Week 2, Day 4, students play Draw Pictures in pairs. Each student selects a spelling word and writes the word at the bottom of a piece of paper. The partner draws a picture illustrating the word. The first student adds a sentence to label the picture and underlines the spelling word.
  • In Unit 5, Week 1, Day 3, students play Illustrate a Word. Partners choose a spelling word. Each partner writes the word at the bottom of a page. Students exchange papers and illustrate the words on their new papers. Students share their picture and work together to write a sentence for each word.
  • In Unit 6, Week 2, Day 3, students access Word Builder on NGReach.com. Students build a question that included a Spelling Word. The partner builds a complete sentence answer using a Spelling Word (words with ie, igh, words with syllables, high frequency words).

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.
4/4
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Indicator Rating Details

The instructional materials reviewed for Grade 1 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 materials include assessments that monitor progress and inform instruction throughout the year with formative, interim, and summative assessment tools that include assessment of foundational skills. Reading Placement test assesses the reading level and places students in the appropriate leveled books. The Assessment Handbook includes Weekly Tests and Unit Tests that assess skills taught throughout the unit including foundational skills. Embedded assessment informs instruction at point of use and then provides the appropriate instructional routine for any reteach that may be needed. Reach into Phonics Foundations Diagnostic Assessments have both a Beginning of the Year and Mid Year Assessment. The Beginning of the Year assessment is used to identify students in need of intervention. The Mid Year assessment is used to measure growth and also to identify students that have not yet mastered certain foundational skills.

  • In the Reach in Phonics Foundations Teacher Guide, A1, Assessment Overview, an assessment chart indicates Diagnostic Assessments for foundational skills (Concepts of Print, Phonological Awareness, Letter-Sound Correspondence, Dictation, High Frequency Words, Phonics and Fluency. The Reading Progress Assessments include Decoding, High Frequency Words, Accuracy, Rate, Expression, and Comprehension.
  • In Unit 3, Week 1, Day 2, the teacher implements a Check and Reteach formative assessment. Students read aloud from the decodable text, “A Fun Spot.” Teacher should note speed and miscues. The teacher is directed to use the Comprehension Coach for students that have low reading speed to build automaticity and to use Reteaching Routine 1 to conduct one-on-one reteaching for miscues.
  • In Unit 5, Week 1, T31a, assessment and reteaching resources are listed for teachers. The assessments include objectives in Foundational Skills, Spelling, Fluency, and Grammar and Writing.

Indicator 1t

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

The instructional materials reviewed for Grade 1 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.  

The materials provide instructional routines in the area of phonological awareness, decoding, dictation, high-frequency words, and fluency. These are listed as reteach resources for teachers based on the end-of-week assessment results. Teachers are also directed to these lessons after administering the informal assessment Check and Reteach. Each week also includes leveled readers for teachers to use in small group differentiated lessons. Additional teaching strategies are listed for students with special needs, below level, above level, and ELL. The differentiation routines stay the same within each unit across the year.

For example:

  • In Unit 5, Week 1, Day 1, there is a Check and Reteach informal assessment. Teachers are directed to use Phonological Awareness Routine 1 for any student that is not able to substitute the initial sounds.
  • In Unit 5, page LR4, there are Leveled Reader, Reading Routines that include four weeks of level text. There is a book for Below Level students, On Level students and Above Level students.
  • In Unit 5, Week 4, in the Assessment and Reteach section on page T67d, teachers are directed to use the Phonological Awareness Routines, Decoding Routines, Dictation Routines, High Frequency Words Routines, Fluency Routines and the Reach into Phonics Foundations as resources.
  • In Unit 5, Week 1, Day 1, there is a differentiated strategy listed for Special Needs students that are having trouble distinguishing between s and -ce, ci_, for /s/.
  • In Unit 6, Week 2, Day 1, a differentiated strategy is explained for ELL students. A Phonics Transfer issue is identified for students that speak Spanish, Vietnamese, Hmong, and Korean because these languages have the long i sound but no sound/symbol match.
  • In Unit 6, Week 2, Day 1, a differentiated strategy is explained for students that are above level and are able to quickly identify and define compound words. Students are directed to create compound words from a word bank and then share the list with a partner. Students are to define the meaning of the words with their partners.

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 1 partially meet the expectations for Gateway 2. The materials include texts organized around a topic to build students' knowledge and vocabulary. Coherently sequenced questions and tasks that require students to analyze the language (words/phrases), key ideas, details, craft, and structure of individual texts are included; however, opportunities for students to analyze the integration of knowledge and ideas across both individual and multiple texts are limited. Some questions and tasks support students' ability to complete culminating tasks in which they demonstrate their knowledge of a topic through integrated skills. The materials include a cohesive, year-long plan for students to interact with and build key academic vocabulary and words in and across texts. Writing instruction and tasks do not consistently increase in complexity or lead to students independently demonstrating grade-level proficiency by the end of the year. The materials provide opportunities for focused research projects that encourage students to develop knowledge by confronting and analyzing different aspects of a topic using multiple texts and sources. While the materials include a design for independent reading, a plan for how independent reading is implemented and a system for accountability for independent reading both inside and outside of the classroom are not present.

Criterion 2a - 2h

24/32

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.
4/4
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Indicator Rating Details

The instructional materials reviewed for Grade 1 meet the criteria that texts are organized around a topic/topics to build students’ ability to read and comprehend complex texts independently and proficiently. The text sets within each unit that the whole class hears during read alouds build students’ knowledge in the units. The same topic is addressed in small group reading and in the Learning Stations.

The eight units contain topics about science or social studies content. Over the course of four weeks per unit, students participate in listening, reading, writing, and discussion around a science or social studies topic and a Big Question.

Examples of units throughout the program that are organized around a topic include:

  • In Unit 1, the overall social studies topic is family and students read realistic fiction, fantasy, postcards, a magazine article, a photobook, and an email to address the big question of what makes a family. Texts include Families in Many Cultures by Heather Adamson, Our Community Garden by Aria Gomez, Papa and Me by Arthur Dorros, and Postcard to Grandpa by Amy Tong.
  • In Unit 3, students read all about how we get things we need in our society. Students read social studies articles, a fable, a humorous story, an online article, a poem, and a fact sheet. Texts in this unit include Markets by Cassie Mayer, Special Delivery! by Geneva Martinez, Delivery by Anastasia Suen, and Money by Heather Langer.
  • In Unit 5, students learn about animals. Over the course of the four weeks, students read science articles, fact books, an animal fantasy, and a picture book to describe how animals are different. Texts in this unit include What Do You Do with a Tail Like This? by Steve Jenkins and Robin Page, Alligators by Julie Larson, A Bird Can Fly by Douglas Florian, and My Crittercam Journal by Greg Marshall.
  • In Unit 8, students read about maps in this social studies unit. Students read adventure stories, informational texts, poems, a fairy tale, and how to articles. Texts include, If Maps Could Talk by Erika L. Shores, Lost by Katie Saucke, Larry Gets Lost in Seattle by John Skewes and Robert Schwartz, and How to Make a Treasure Map by Jonathan Nwosu.

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 1 meet the criteria that 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.

Throughout the program, students are asked a series of questions to help them analyze the details, key ideas, and structure of individual texts. Weekly lessons focus on a different reading comprehension skill, such as using visuals, analyzing characters, and analyzing story elements.

Examples of a series of coherently sequenced questions and tasks about analyzing details and structure include:

  • In Unit 1, Week 2, during shared reading of The World is Your Family, students answer a series of questions that focus on active reading, using visuals to help understanding, identifying purpose, and drawing conclusions. When the reading is complete, partners write sentences about the article, using sentence frames.
  • In Unit 3, Week 4, students listen to the text, Money. The teacher reviews how to ask questions as students read. Students answer compare and contrast questions and metacognitive questions about what they learned: "What did you learn about money? What did you know before?"
  • In Unit 4, Week 1, students listen to the fantasy story, Farfallina and Marcel. The teacher build comprehension by helping students analyze the plot and sequence. Questions include: "What happens in the beginning of the story? What details are important on these pages? What do Marcel’s actions show about him?"
  • In Unit 5, Week 3, students read the decodable text, Animal Prints. Students analyze key ideas and details and answer, "What does a tracker do? What can prints tell us?, and How do you track an animal if its dark?"
  • In Unit 6, Week 2, students read the Native American legend, Wind Eagle. Questions focus on analyzing the characters’ experiences and actions: "What happens to Gluscabi? What does Gluscabi do after the fish die? Why does he do that?"
  • In Unit 8, Week 3, students engage in a shared reading of Caperucita Roja. During the first read, students answer a series of questions to help clarify meaning. During the second read, questions analyze elements of a fairy tale, determine importance, analyze characters, and identify cause and effect.

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 instructional materials reviewed for Grade 1 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 materials provide opportunities for students to analyze the integration of knowledge and ideas in individual texts; however, opportunities across multiple texts are limited. Most questions found within units focus on building comprehension of the text, instead of the topic. Question types primarily include retelling, author’s purpose, and identifying main idea and details.

Examples include:

  • In Unit 1, Week 4, students learn about the state of Arizona prior to reading the shared reading of a postcard from Arizona. The comprehension questions ask recall questions: “What is this selection about?” The only evidence of students integrating ideas across multiple texts is when students are asked how the setting of the postcard is similar to the setting of the text, Papa and Me, but this does not help to build knowledge.
  • In Unit 4, Week 1, students read two animal fantasies. The knowledge gained in this unit is about the genre versus a topic. Some comprehension questions help build knowledge of the story, but not of a science or social studies topic: "What do Marcel’s actions say about him? What details are important on these pages?" On Day 3, students answer how the story, Ruby in Her Own Time, is similar to the story, Farfallina & Marcel, though this does not require an analysis of the integration of knowledge.
  • In Unit 7, Week 2, students learn about outer space, but a limited number of questions help students analyze the integration of knowledge across both individual and multiple texts. Prior to reading Life in Outer Space, students are reminded that they previously read the blog, My Space Adventures. Few comprehension questions to help build knowledge are found in the week but include: "Where will astronauts use the inventions Constance make?" The majority of the questions during the week help students identify main idea and details and identifying author’s purpose instead of building knowledge.

Indicator 2d

The questions and tasks support students' ability to complete culminating tasks in which they demonstrate their knowledge of a topic (or, for grades 6-8, a theme) through integrated skills (e.g. combination of reading, writing, speaking, listening).
2/4
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Indicator Rating Details

The instructional materials reviewed for Grade 1 partially 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).

At the end of each unit in Grade 1, students complete Unit Projects. Students have a choice of three different projects that they can choose from. However, only some of the projects require students to demonstrate knowledge of a topic though integrated skills, and because students have a choice in which project they complete, some students may elect the projects that do not require any knowledge from the unit.

For example:

  • In Unit 1, the Big Question is what makes a family. Students explore things that families do together. While the projects are all about family, students can, for the most part, do the projects without having read the unit texts or discussing them. The project choices include:
    • Working in a group to make a chart called Family Sizes. Students write their names on the left of the chart and draw the number of people in their family on the right and then compare family sizes.
    • In a group, students plan a family trip. They make a list of where they would go and what they would do there, and how they would get there. They then locate the places on a map.
    • Students trace their hand on a piece of paper and write one way they help out at home on each finger.
  • In Unit 3, students learn about how we get things that we need. The projects involve thinking about things we need, but do not require students to demonstrate their knowledge of a topic. The project choices include:
    • Making a chart about things we buy and things that are free and listing things in each chart. While students may use what they learned from the week to do this project, others will be able to do it from background knowledge.
    • Students read a poem and then each person in the group adds to the poem. They must say a want or a need that rhymes with the previous line.
    • Students cut pictures out of magazines of things they want or need and then label them.
  • In Unit 5, learn about different animals and think about how animals are different. In this unit, students do have options in which they have to demonstrate their knowledge through an integration of skills. The project choices include:
    • Students draw their favorite animal from the unit, label the animal’s body parts, and then write a sentence about the animal.
    • Students interview a partner and ask questions about how the animals look and move.
    • Students pretend they are animals, make a mask to represent that animal, and then act out how the animal moves.
  • In Unit 7, students study the difference between then and now. They learn about how things were different in the past compared to the present. Some of the project choices require students to integrate skills to demonstrate knowledge, but this is not consistent with all project choices. Project choices include:
    • Students write a list of the key words from the unit and put them in alphabetical order. Then students use three of the words to write about things they learned about the past.
    • Students pretend they are a time traveler and live in the past. They interview each other asking questions about the past. They then do it again but this time, pretending they are from the future.
    • Students make a telephone, using two cans and a string. The students talk in the telephone, which requires no integration of skills or knowledge.

Indicator 2e

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

The instructional materials reviewed for Grade 1 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 instructional materials have a daily emphasis on vocabulary. Some of the activities involve learning the word, while others focus and aid in the comprehension and building of knowledge.

There are three vocabulary routines listed in the Best Practices section in the Teacher’s Edition These include:

In the Introduce Word routine students begin by repeating the word and rating the word using a thumb up or thumb down. The teacher defines the word for the students and then together they work on elaborating. The teacher often has students talk about the word, give examples and non examples, and connect it across content areas. Examples of the implementation of this routine include, but are not limited to:

  • In Unit 1, Week 3, Day 2, students are introduced to the Key Words for the week, group, idea, place, share, trip. Routine 1 is carried out; however, only some of the words are used throughout the comprehension portion of the lesson, tying it directly to the text.
  • In Unit 2, Week 1, Day 1, students are studying the characteristics of living and nonliving things and the teacher walks students through Vocabulary Routine 1 to learn the Key Words for the week, animal, breathe, drink, eat, living, non living, person, plant. Then, in the Talk Together section, students use the Key Words to describe how something is living or nonliving. Then students hear the book, Life in the Forest, which uses all of the vocabulary words.

The second routine is the Expand Word Knowledge where students work in pairs using a graphic organizer, which is often a four corners: word, picture, word in context, and definition. Students are then assigned keywords for the graphic organizer. Examples of the implementation of this routine include, but are not limited to:

  • In Unit 6, Week 1, Day 3, students make a “window” (piece of paper laid horizontally and with ¼ of each side folded in toward the centerline of the paper to create two flaps) for the word, weather. Students write the word on the left-hand flap and draw a picture to represent the word on the right-hand flap. Then, on the inside section, they write a sentence using the word. The students then read the text, I Face the Wind, where they need to understand the word, weather, in order to comprehend the story.
  • In Unit 7, Week 3, Day 3, students make a Four Corners graphic organizer with a small group to illustrate and define a single word from the week’s vocabulary.

The final vocabulary routine is the Share Word Knowledge where pairs are formed and they share their filled-in graphic organizer from the second routine. Then they discuss and write sentences in their journals with the words. Examples of the implementation of this routine include, but are not limited to:

  • In Unit 5, Week 3, Day 4, students use the 4 Corner Posters they made on Day 4 for the week’s Key Words. They follow the routine to share their knowledge of the words, and then write sentences to accompany them on the back of the posters. One word is slither and the text students read at this time is Slither, Slide, Hop, and Run.
  • In Unit 7, Week 1, Day 4, students use the window they created to share a vocabulary word with a partner. Each student shows their Window, reads their sentence and talks about the word. Then, the students work together to write additional sentences.

Additional support is provided for students with vocabulary acquisition. One support is Review, Extend, and Reteach which is where the teacher remodels the graphic organizer activities. Another support is Text-Talk Read Aloud where the teacher discusses the vocabulary after the text has been read aloud by walking through the first few steps of the Vocabulary Routine 1. A final support is reteaching vocabulary for students who need additional instruction or review.

In addition to learning new vocabulary words, students also learn vocabulary strategies. These lessons occur on Weeks 2 and 4 of the unit. Examples include:

  • In Unit 3, Week 2, students learn the difference between verbs and nouns. They then return to their vocabulary words and decide if they are nouns or verbs.
  • In Unit 7, Week 4, students learn how to alphabetize and use a dictionary. Students learn that dictionaries can help them learn the definition of unknown words. They add the definitions to the Vocabulary Notebooks.

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.
2/4
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Indicator Rating Details

The instructional materials reviewed for Grade 1 partially 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.

Materials include multiple and varied opportunities for both on-demand and process writing tasks that span the year’s worth of instruction. Students write daily through varied opportunities such as one minute power writing, writing about what they read, and writing to improve grammar.  Students also write on Day 5 of small group reading time. Students also participate in a week-long writing project each week. However, not all writing tasks increase in complexity from the beginning to the end of the school year. Week-long writing projects are introduced during the fourth week of every unit; however, the same instructional routines occur each week, with only a difference in the writing prompt. Each writing project begins with students studying a model, prewriting and completing a RAFT, drafting, revising, editing, and publishing.

Students have opportunities to write daily, but the progression of writing lessons do not increase in complexity, and at times the skills do not connect across the days to support students independently demonstrating grade-level proficiency by the end of the year. While the topics remain relatively consistent to help build knowledge, the complexity of writing prompts and tasks do not increase significantly across the year.

Examples include:

  • In Unit 2, Week 1, students begin the week writing about living and non living things. Students use words in a box to help write their sentences and they illustrate their sentences on Day 1. On Day 2, students use sentence frames to describe something that is living or nonliving and how it looks, feels, or smells. Then on Day 3, students write about living things by drawing a living thing and adding a caption, but on Day 4, students write a verse for the song they read about, which does not align to the writing or the topic for the week. On Day 5, students write how they live by completing sentence frames.
  • In Unit 4, Week 3, students write about animals on Day 1 by filling in a main idea sentence frame and then writing two to three details to support the main idea. On Day 2, students write a few sentences about artist’s craft, and then on Day 3, students write about how butterflies are born by using Key Words and completing sentences. Students write about butterflies on Day 4 and, on Day 5, students write a numbered list. Students practice different writing skills almost everyday about different topics.
  • In Unit 6, Week 4, students begin on Day 1 with writing a question for Tim Samaras after reading his interview. On Day 2, students work in pairs to write questions and answers about the most extreme weather they have ever seen or read. On Day 3, students write two sentences about hurricanes using the sentence frames provided if necessary. On Day 4, students revisit texts they have read and write a sentence about what they learned. On the final day, students write one to two sentences to describe a picture they drew of the wildest weather they ever experienced.

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.
4/4
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Indicator Rating Details

The instructional materials reviewed for Grade 1 meet the criteria that materials include a progression of focused, shared research and writing projects to encourage students to develop knowledge and understanding of a topic using texts and other source materials.

Over the course of the year, students have some opportunities to learn different components of research skills such as using maps and sources; most of these opportunities occur as options during Learning Stations. Students also have opportunities to contribute to class books, such as a class book about families; however, materials include limited opportunities for students to begin developing their research concepts as they grow knowledge and literacy skills.

Examples include:

  • In Unit 1, Week 1, students write about their families. They draw a picture and complete the sentence stem, "My family is ____." Student pages are placed together into a class book. Later in the week, students reread the class book and create another page using the sentence stem, "Families ____ together."
  • In Unit 1, Week 4, students work together as a class to create a postcard about places they have visited or would like to visit.
  • In Unit 1, Week 4, students continue to add to the class book. Students work in pairs to create a sentence that answers, “Where does your family live now? Where did they live before?”
  • In Unit 6, Week 4, students write about spending money based on the book, Money. The teacher asks, “What would you do with a dollar?” Students then complete the sentence frame, "I would spend a dollar on _____."

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.
2/4
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Indicator Rating Details

The materials reviewed for Grade 1 partially meet the criteria that materials provide a design, including accountability, for how students will regularly engage in a volume of independent reading either in or outside of class.

Independent reading is mentioned in this program, but a plan for how it is implemented and a system for accountability for how students will engage in a volume of independent reading both inside and outside of the classroom does not exist. While all the information for independent reading is found in the Small Group Reading Guide, it does not explain when this should occur in or outside of the classroom nor for how long each day. There is no recording device provided nor accountability for how much students read or how well students read.

The Teacher's Edition provides a basic independent reading routine but is not specific. It suggests that teachers select topics and provide a rich collection of books to choose from, though teachers need to select these books. Recommended Books for each unit are listed in the Teacher's Edition and are identified by fiction and nonfiction, and are connected to the overall unit and topic/theme. It is suggested that the books include known texts, classroom favorites, and picture books. Students should be supported in selecting their books of interest for independent reading according to the Teacher’s Edition, but how a teacher should do this is not explicitly stated. After independent reading, students should share their reading experiences and summarize what they read. Teachers are encouraged to extend the independent reading by giving extension activities, such as drawing a picture related to the book or writing a short play based on the book.

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: 10/02/2019

Report Edition: 2017

About Publishers Responses

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

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

The publisher has not submitted a response.

Educator-Led Review Teams

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

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

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

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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