kitchen table math, the sequel: miscue analysis

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

miscue analysis

at D-Ed Reckoning


Check out this conclusion contained near the end of a 31-page case study of a 5th grade boy's reading:
John’s comprehension at his current fifth grade level is excellent when he is relieved of the task of recognizing words.


Paul B said...

I wonder if John is read to during his standardized ELA testing...

Catherine Johnson said...

no kidding!

A friend of mine told me the other day that her son is doing better on tests now that the teachers are reading questions out loud to him. This is a student at the end of freshman year in high school.

I would be VERY concerned in her place....why does he need test questions read out loud?

And: exactly how is this reading happening?

Is the teacher highlighting the meaningful parts of the question through expression & tone?


Allison said...

At college, I was told to accommodate students with "learning disabilities" by offering extra time on the tests (twice the standard of two hours for a one hour test--that is, giving them four hours for the one hour test), and reading aloud the questions.

I inquired, but I was not allowed to know the nature of the learning disability.

It's an understatement to say that I'm troubled to think that a student has made it to college receiving the title of "learning disabled" that is simply he is illiterate because HE WAS NEVER TAUGHT TO READ.

Worse--in all cases, the extra time changed exactly nothing--the students didn't pass, and wrote nothing worth any points after the original two hours. If being read the test out loud did anything, I couldn't tell.

Catherine Johnson said...

btw, the boy I'm talking about isn't dyslexic & isn't considered to have reading problems (that I know of)

DEFINITELY not dyslexic

Catherine Johnson said...

Worse--in all cases, the extra time changed exactly nothing--the students didn't pass, and wrote nothing worth any points after the original two hours.


I had read that before....then I read an article just the other day saying that the extra time on SATs had produced score gains, which is why CollegeBoard flagged the extra time tests for a while.

Paul B said...

Reading to kids during math tests is hard to do correctly. I remember one student who was, without a doubt, the most highly challenged person in his class. Yet, on a district wide assessment (where he was read to) he placed #1. We retested with a different reader and he placed at the bottom where all indications and previous testing were clustered.

His reader was his ELA teacher and she really pulled for this kid all year. He was her 'project' (to her credit). A lot of that enthusiasm leaked into the reading. I don't believe she was feeding answers either.

What happens is that some disadvantaged/disabled kids get very good at reading people. They read your face, body language, tone of voice, etc. I suspect she was an open book to him.

Catherine Johnson said...

That is fascinating.

Tracy W said...

Well if a horse could get the right arithemtic answers from body language, then it's not surprising that a human could be able to do even better, if they had sufficient incentives to learn.
This is also why medical trials go nuts for double-blinding.

Niels Henrik Abel said...

I can second Allison's experience. From time to time I get a student who shows me their paper from student support services indicating that they need accommodation (e.g., extra time) for tests. In most instances, the student doesn't pass the class anyhow despite the accommodation. I'm usually not privy as to the reason why the student needs accommodation, but sometimes it's not hard to figure out: Just this summer, I had a student who had the paper and needed extra time on tests, the evident reason being some sort of eyesight problem. She would use a gizmo that looked like a miniature spyglass to read stuff on the board, or on the test. Whatever her disability, it didn't appear to slow her down in terms of grasping the material, and she actually wound up being one of the better students in the class.

Most of the students with "the paper," however, don't really seem to benefit from the accommodation, and I suspect there are other issues at play rather than merely needing extra time on tests.

ChemProf said...

Yeah, it is always interesting to see where accommodations ("the paper") help and where they don't. I remember a student who had to be in her own room so she could read the questions aloud to herself, but who always finished before the rest of the class. A student with hand issues needed extra time because she wrote slowly. But in a lot of cases, it seems like the crutch doesn't really help them (and those folks almost always insist they are really good students with no real evidence).

The scary thing is that differentiated instruction is heading to colleges as "universal design." The difference is we are now being asked to think of alternative ways to assess students, so that a mathphobic student could write a paper rather than take a test, for example. I am sticking my fingers in my ears and waiting for this fad to pass by.

Cranberry said...

The scary thing is that differentiated instruction is heading to colleges as "universal design."

Great. One more piece of jargon to keep in mind. The rage for differentiated instruction is keeping pace with my children's development. There's no escape!