The #1 Curriculum and Assessment Partner for Educators

Two Strategies for Mastering Essential Standards with Study Island

Two Strategies for Mastering Essential Standards with Study Island

Testing season—each year, teachers, administrators, students, and parents gear up to put their best foot forward for a series of high-stakes summative tests. While spring testing season usually comes with a rollercoaster of emotions and challenges, this year is providing some never-before-seen stressors centered around the uncertainty currently looming over testing season. It’s clear with the Biden administration’s recent announcement that state assessments will still happen this school year, but it remains to be seen what amount of accountability the tests will hold. 

As educators, one way to ensure that your students are prepared this spring—whether their tests will be held to state’s accountability measures—is to review your state’s essential standards that will be covered. By definition, essential standards (also sometimes called priority or power standards) represent the need-to-know knowledge that students require to be successful in the next grade level, and they are therefore often the most-tested standards. Essential standards are an important factor when it comes to testing season because, as many educators know, it is virtually impossible to cover every single standard in a given curriculum. However, when you focus on mastering the essentials, students are given the ability to use reasoning and thinking skills to understand other curriculum objectives. With many accountability systems relying on high-stakes testing, making sure that your students are prepared with the knowledge of these standards is vital—whether you agree with summative testing or not. With such heavy time and attention spent this school year on addressing learning loss, a focused approach to on-grade learning may be required for test preparation.

Study Island helps to provide ongoing standards-based practice and reinforcement that incorporates the two most effective learning techniques,-distributed practice and practice testing-making it the perfect tool to hone in on which standards your students need additional preparation.

Check out these two proven strategies covered in a recent webinar led by Edmentum expert, Wendy Teffeteller, to use Study Island to target your essential standards and prepare your students for this spring’s state tests. 

Strategy One: Use Class Summary Reports to Target Areas of Concern

Study Island’s Class Summary reporting feature is a fantastic way to track your students’ progress within the program and to see specifically how they are performing for each of your state’s appointed essential standards. By using the Class Summary Report, educators are able view each of their student’s data (time spent in the program, questions answered, and percentage correct) for whichever standard they choose, compare student performance to other Study Island users across the state, and even find performance level breakdowns of the entire class.

Another important feature to note within the Class Summary report is the Suggested Topics option. Choosing this feature within the report will provide you with an essential tool to plan your instruction—which of your standards are considered high priority. The program works to automatically pull data as your students work through their power standards and then suggests which standards to cover next, taking the guesswork out of your instructional planning. Check out this clip from the Mastering Essential Standards with Study Island webinar, where Wendy explains how to create a Class Summary Report.

Strategy Two: Use Sensei to Assign Student Practice

Once you’ve used your Class Summary report to effectively pinpoint what essential standards are considered high priority for your students, you’ll need the tools to support them. That’s where Study Island’s Sensei feature comes into play! Sensei, Edmentum’s data dashboard, allows you to choose to view your students’ mastery by specific standards, making it easy for you to find essential standards. Once you’ve selected your standards, this feature allows you to select either specific students or the entire class to assign practice and instruction assignments to, and it always makes certain that they’re being assigned work that is based off their personalized data. In the clip below, Wendy explains how to use Sensei to assign personalized work to your students.

While these strategies are not the only way to gear up for assessments this spring, we’re confident that using Study Island will provide teachers with a critical piece to the puzzle of spring assessment preparation. Research confirms that students who use Study Island are proven to achieve higher math and reading assessment scores. If you’re looking to dive deeper into how Study Island can help your students master the essential standards, check out the full on-demand webinar, where Wendy presents more product specific tips, considers overall testing season strategies, and even examines what we can expect with the current state of testing!

Ready to take your test-preparation program to the next level? Start your FREE Study Island trial today!

brittany.voges's picture
Brittany Voges

Brittany Voges currently serves as a Content and Social Media Specialist at Edmentum, and has been with the company since 2016. Before her time at Edmentum, Brittany studied Elementary Education, and eventually went on to teach 4th grade in Title 1 schools. Because of her background in education, Brittany is passionate about providing educators across the United States and the world with the tools and best practices to empower their students each day in the classroom.