I generally start conversations with my peer mentee by asking, “What’s going well lately? What has been challenging?” Through these questions, I am able to celebrate successes and initiate conversations that will lead to potential solutions. It was during one of these conversations that I learned my collaborating teacher was struggling to find enough time to regularly assess each of her students’ reading fluency and comprehension. I had heard about Raz-Kids through several colleagues and so my collaborating teacher and I explored it as an option for “formative and summative assessments aligned with content […] standards” (International Society for Technology in Education, 2011). Raz-Kids is an “interactive reading tool for students to practice reading fluency and comprehension. Students can listen to books for modeled fluency, read books for practice, and then record themselves reading. Every leveled eBook has an accompanying eQuiz to test reading comprehension” (Raz-Kids).
Using this tool, my collaborating teacher has been able to monitor her students’ progress, work with students one-on-one during center time, and assign homework based on their individual needs. She is able to hear every student in her class read aloud, praise their work, and help them to grow as readers and learners. Scroll down to see this tool in action as both a student and a teacher.
International Society for Technology in Education. (2011). ISTE standards: coaches. Retrieved June 29, 2011, from http://www.iste.org/standards/ISTE-standards/standards-for-coaches