Using the Data to Drive Instruction



    Using the Data to Drive Instruction

    Posted by Kimberly Reynolds, B.A.Ed., M.A.Ed., Ed.S. on Mar 21, 2018

    SchoolCity has been our main resource to increase student achievement on district assessments and on state assessments. As an Instructional Coach, I have many different roles from an academic coach to an assessment analyst to a team teacher. On a weekly basis, I support teachers by analyzing student data, implementing best instructional practices from that data and showing students how to have more ownership of their data for their next steps. This is the fourth year that District 6 has been using SchoolCity as our assessment management system to help guide student achievement and we are consistently seeing upward trends in student’s mastering our priority standards in both ELA and Math. We not only use the different types of assessments in SchoolCity for our summative assessments but we also progress monitor our students using the SchoolCity item banks focusing upon priority standards. Our teachers are constantly having one-on-one conversations with students after they submit a test to view their scores and look at the responses to dig deep into their successes or their misconceptions (see picture below). The instant data then drives the instruction for the small groups the next day.

    “SchoolCity is implemented as a crucial tool in our progress monitoring process as it provides us with critical data to make daily and weekly adjustments to students individual instruction.”-quote from an elementary teacher

    Teachers primarily use the Standards Analysis Reports after a progress monitoring quiz to place the students into instructional groups. The teachers also use the filtering tool within SchoolCity to filter the students by proficiency level and language level. Using SchoolCity in our district has not only allowed us to closely monitor standard mastery results but is also has allowed us to assist the students in giving them ownership of their learning. SchoolCity reports also allow students to reflect on their learning, develop their own learning path and understand their learning progression set to goals.Here are two quotes from two 5th grade students about what they like about owning their data through using the SchoolCity Standards Analysis Reports:

    “It is important because the teacher gives me feedback and helps me focus on what I need to better at.” Tiffany (5th grader)

    “I need to work on comparing and contrasting with one number and another number. I need to work at reading the numbers in expanded form first correctly before comparing the numbers.” Andes (5th grader)

    Below is a picture of a 5th grade teacher having a personalized learning conference with a student using the Standards Analysis Report to set her next goals in reading.

    Using SchoolCity to get immediate feedback for students has helped make our instruction more personalized where the learners drive their own instruction and set their own goals. Just recently the teachers have used the Standards Analysis Reports to compare their pre and post benchmark assessments in order to show the students their growth in both ELA and Math priority standards. Since the students know their learning targets in each grade level, they can recognize the reports from SchoolCity and identify the key learning targets most improved to least improved. For example, a teacher may show a report similar to the one below to the class for an overall picture of how the class performed on the standards:

    Patterson User's Group Pics_5.jpg

    Even in 2nd grade we have the students reflect on their learning by using the “Classroom Resources” feature within SchoolCity to custom build standards-based lessons on a weekly basis as a reteaching tool as the picture below shows. A quote from one of our elementary teachers:

    “SchoolCity has definitely altered my data processes in the elementary classroom. I can breakdown the data and create subgroups within SchoolCity to plan for interventions or extensions. The resources option allows me to assign tasks/videos to provide individual students with what he/she needs to get to the next level.”

    Video link of Kimberly Reynolds showing a class how the “Classsroom Resrouces” can work in the classroom:

    Our teachers also like to use the Pivot Table Report to see an overall view of how their class improved in proficiency levels on a district or school assessment testing the same standards (see sample above). In grades 3-5 in ELA we had an average of 64% growth in proficiency levels from our pre to post benchmarks and in the Math pre to post benchmarks we had an average of 57% growth in proficiency levels. Using the most current data from our students can paint a clear picture of how our students will perform on our state assessments in April. SchoolCity has allowed teachers to quickly give snapshot assessments to students to gage their learning progression and it has allowed the teachers the ability to work collaboratively to create their own SchoolCity tests based on student need. SchoolCity has offered our teachers and students quality assessments aligned to common core standards with a similar structure of our state assessments. Who wouldn’t use the assessment banks and reports inside SchoolCity to help increase student achievement and refine instruction?

    Topics: Data Analytics, Data Driven Instruction

    Kimberly is an Instructional Coach at Monfort Elementary and a SchoolCity champion in Greeley-Evans School District 6 in Greeley, Colorado. She is passionate about the resources inside SchoolCity and the assessment platform that benefits teachers, district leaders and students. This is her fourth year using SchoolCity as a tool to assist teachers at her school in assessment and instruction as well as supporting district leaders with SchoolCity to drive student achievement. She has been instrumental in creating district wide assessments using the item banks in SchoolCity as well as implementing district wide SchoolCity trainings. For the past 28 years, she has been an innovative, results-driven educator in the states of Washington and Colorado. She has her Bachelor of Arts Degree in Elementary Education from Whitworth University in Spokane, Washington, and she also has her Masters of Arts Degree in Reading from St. Martin’s College in Lacey, Washington. When moving back to Colorado she obtained her Educational Leadership Degree from University of Northern Colorado in 2014. She strives to support teachers and students on a daily basis with the best instructional practices that meet the needs of ALL learners.

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