Targeting with Tech:
Closing Reading Gaps With MAP Fluency
Mount Markham Elementary School is excited to announce that we will be spearheading a new computer-based reading assessment thanks to the New York State Learning Technology Grant. This new program is designed to assist teachers in identifying students’ reading gaps and provide specific, targeted interventions that they can use immediately to begin closing those gaps. This is achieved through the MAP Fluency program, an oral reading assessment that can be administered to an entire class in about 20 minutes, saving precious teaching time while also providing critical feedback to assist our students with their reading and comprehension.
Mount Markham School District is located in the beautiful, rural Mohawk Valley region in the town of West Winfield. Our district is large, serving 1,100+ students from four different counties covering 200 square miles. We would be implementing this program in the Elementary School, which serves around 400 students K-Grade 4, plus 30 Pre-K students, of which approximately 58% qualify for free or reduced lunch. Foundational literacy skills are essential to master at the elementary level, and MAP Fluency can provide us with insight as to the specific needs of each student in terms of their literacy gaps. We are currently categorized as a “high needs, rural” school district, which makes providing high-quality and effective instruction absolutely critical to facilitate the academic growth of the children of our community.
What is MAP Fluency?
MAP (Measure of Academic Progress) Fluency is an adaptive universal screening program for reading foundational and fluency skills which provides direction for teachers to implement interventions to meet student needs. Through a 20 minute computer-based oral assessment, it offers precise, reliable insights to support early readers while maximizing valuable instructional time. This research-based interactive assessment supplies an audio recording component enabling teachers to listen to each student’s oral reading performance with flexible accessibility. Unlike the traditional one-on-one assessments, which take up a tremendous amount of valuable teaching time and can be skewed by teacher bias or error, MAP Fluency can be administered to entire classes simultaneously through the use of noise-canceling headphones and microphones.
Goals of Mount Markham’s TWT Project
- To use technology to increase awareness of specific reading gaps so that teachers will better understand the needs of their students, and can plan interventions accordingly.
- To provide teachers with high-quality professional development that will empower them to navigate the new MAP Fluency program, as well as engage with new tools and resources that will specifically target the reading gaps that are promptly identified by the program itself.
- To help our school achieve one of the 2021-2026 MMCSD Board of Education Goals, which is to reach 90% of students reading on grade level by grade three in five years.
Timeline for Implementation
- Students who qualify for Tier 3 reading intervention with the RTI Reading Teachers for the 2021-2022 school year will be the first to engage with the MAP Fluency program. These students will use noise-canceling headphones to take the oral reading assessment, which will generate detailed feedback for teachers to review and use to create personalized lessons that are engaging and fun while targeting an underdeveloped skill.
- During the summer of 2022, classroom teachers will receive professional development to learn how to use the program, as well as locate appropriate resources to assist them in planning effective interventions for their Tier 2 students. The program will then be opened to all students in the fall of 2023, allowing teachers to take full advantage of the detailed feedback the MAP Fluency program gives them in order to adjust and personalize learning targets for all students, even those who are above grade level.
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