Really Advanced Students

Quick question. If a student reads at or above grade level, does he/she belong in Read 180. In other words, is Read 180 seen mostly as an intervention program meant to help out struggling readers? I ask this because many kids (over half the class) are fairly strong readers.

Posted on: October 07 2009
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  • SuzannePuccerella

    Curious Guy - What grade do you teach? READ 180 is an intensive reading intervention for students who are reading at least two years below grade level. It wasn't designed to be used with student reading above grade level. We do have some supplemental collections and activities that can help you keep them engaged. I am interested in know what your school plan is that has students reading above grade level in READ 180. Is anyone else using READ 180 with advanced students?

    I have worked in READ 180 as tech specialist for several years and this year as one of the reading teachers. Every year there always seems to be a few students that have ended up in the class that do not need the Read 180 program. Generally we keep the kids for appx 1 quarter, just to verify that they are comprehending and not just "reading" the words. During that time I try to get them to focus on "identifying and fixing" whatever was the problem that landed them into Read 180 -- frequently they are discipline problems or they blew off a standardized test and were misclassified. I try to have talks with them on our goal setting days, trying to give them strategies for behaviors and test taking, etc. and then send them on their merry way back to a regular class. I always remind them that though I loved (some more than others-LOL) having them in class, and they are always welcome to stop by, I never want to see their name on my class roster again!

    One of the very first things I do for my READ 180 classes is to research students' middle school state reading assessment scores. I compare students' initial READ 180 SRI scores to their state assessment scores to see which students were proficient readers in middle school. Afterwards, I monitor students' level of computer software progress and other classwork activities. After reviewing and analyzing student data from READ 180 reports, I conclude that some students probably didn't take the initial READ 180 SRI test seriously and are very capable of making higher scores on the SRI. I share this information with my students and challenge them to strive to reach their level of competence on the next SRI test. Finally, schools should use several predictors to place students in READ 180 classes such as middle school state reading assessments, grades from middle schools, and teacher recommendations. One end-of-the year test during the last week of school is not enough.

    I do the same, but as I have all special education students, most have been appropriately placed. I do get a few students each year who test in with grade-level Lexiles, but there is usually a lack of motivation or they haven't tajken the state testing seriously. With these students, I find that READ 180 is very helpful in teaching them to take testing seriously and develop skills in testing and reading longer passages. Debbie


    It is always wise to use multiple assessments for selecting students for READ 180.

    Last year was my first year teaching Read 180, and I did have a student with above average reading skills, but he was emotionally/behaviorally unable to function in a general education classroom.  Rather than putting him in an alternative setting, they tried him in the special education/resource classes.  He did extremely well in these classes (academically and emotionally/behaviorally).  While he read at a high level, he was one of my most motivated students in the program.  He was experiencing success, and learning to enjoy reading.  He was motivated to do well, largely due to his successes.  After listening and following along with one of the audio books, he began reading those books without the use of the audio because he realized he could and enjoyed that more.  So he was actually reading grade level books that were being read in the general education reading classes with the addition of the support and success that he needed.  I would sometimes work with him separately in small group to work on higher level skills, and a couple of my other stronger readers worked with him at times as well.  I think there is a place for Read 180 with some students even if they are not below grade level (and possibly above grade level) in their reading skills. 

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