by Joan Reissman, JFY Learning Specialist
Standards-based instruction includes MCAS, SAT, grade-level skills
MCAS is back on the schedule for the current school year. Teachers are struggling to cope with remote and hybrid learning models, and to comprehend the impact of six months’ learning loss. JFYNet is adapting its connected learning help them meet the compound challenges of this shortened and complicated school year.
As a teacher, you have to focus on your curriculum. You don’t have much time to focus on standardized tests. JFYNet builds its curricula to teach fundamental, standards-based skills. When we develop a curriculum for you, it covers the fundamental skills on which MCAS and most other standardized tests are based. It’s no mystery that improving students’ skills will result in higher test scores. JFY analyzes and compares the content of standardized tests so that we can provide your students with the most comprehensive preparation possible.
Since our primary aim is to teach fundamental skills, we focus on knowledge, not test tricks. We want students to develop the fundamental language and math skills that will build a foundation for future success. We have broken down the essential skills for the SAT, ACT, and Accuplacer so they can study for these tests if needed. Since these test-focused skills are subsets of our larger grade-level curricula, there is no conflict between “teaching to the test” and teaching the state standards. The test is just a subset of the standards. When students are studying in our programs, JFY analysis and support helps them focus on the skills they need. We identify specific skills to help the teacher differentiate instruction so that students can focus on what’s most important for their own individual success. Some students need to review fundamental skills, while others need a more advanced program. JFY Learning Specialists are constantly analyzing student performance and feeding teachers information on student progress. Our concordances between standardized tests are only the first step. Through formative assessment and data driven instruction, we help students get the most benefit out of their instructional time. Assessment—baseline and formative– guides the customization of curriculum to fit each student’s needs. Summative assessment at the end measures progress.
In order to stay current you have to look at other products and see how they compare with yours. To ensure that we are providing the best learning solutions, JFY is constantly researching what’s available on the market. We are confident that our software and supplemental resources provide the best connected learning experiences for our students—supported by our training and consultation, of course. We use our pedagogy to build critical thinking skills along with academic skills.
Many software programs rely on rote learning and multiple choice. This does not help students build higher order thinking skills. Finessing a question by eliminating enough wrong answers does not help master the content. Our programs don’t rely on multiple choice. Our math program requires students to enter each step of the problem and show their work. Our ELA program includes open response and thought questions so that students develop reading, critical thinking and writing skills simultaneously.
When you work with JFYNet, you get the benefit of our expertise and thorough research. Your students will be using the best software with professional support in a targeted instruction program that will help them get the most out of their study time. JFY’s connected learning is a proven path to academic success.
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