Thursday, September 27, 2012

Tips for Using the CAN DO Name Charts





Looking for a way to organize and share your students’ English language proficiency data?  For years I have suggested to my workshop participants that they use the CAN DO Descriptors to contextualize their students’ ACCESS for ELLs® data.  That is, I have suggested that they write their students’ names or initials on the appropriate grade level cluster CAN DO charts.  But now we have an even better option! 

Recently WIDA staff created a new layout for the CAN DO charts to make it easier to add students’ names.  In the image on the left, I circled the Names area and demonstrated how you can write in students’ names based on their most recent ACCESS for ELLs, W-APT or MODEL scores. 
 There is one language domain with descriptors per page, along with a blank row large enough to write an entire class of students’ names.  At the end of this post you will see an example of what the entire page looks like.  If you would like to download the Name Charts to use in your own classroom, click here.   

TIP #1:  Take some time at a staff meeting to distribute your students’ ACCESS scores.  Show your colleagues how to find their students’ proficiency levels in all four language domains (listening, speaking, reading and writing).  Then show them how to fill out the CAN DO Name Chart.  Be sure to have them write their name, room number and school year on the top of the chart.

TIP #2: Ask your colleagues to spend a few moments reflecting on the data in their charts.  What patterns do they notice?  Did anything surprise them?  Take a few minutes to debrief and discuss these observations.  This is a great way to introduce staff members to what research has to say about developing academic language.  For more on academic language, click here.  

TIP #3: Either during the same meeting or at a subsequent staff meeting, have groups of teachers work together to complete the cell for Level 6: Reaching.  If possible, have an ESL/bilingual teacher work together with general education teachers to write several statements that capture grade-level academic English expectations for each language domain (i.e. Listening, speaking, reading and writing).

TIP #4:  Encourage classroom teachers to share their completed CAN DO Name Charts with the physical education, fine arts, and music teachers.  

TIP #5:  Refer to your completed CAN DO Name Chart when you are collaborating with your colleagues and lesson planning.  In other words, model how to use the CAN DO Descriptors in lesson planning. 
For more on using the CAN DO Descriptors in lesson planning, click on the appropriate grade level:

CAN DO Name Chart -Speaking Grades 6-8


Written by: Tammy King

Teachers at Work Image: FreeDigitalPhotos.net
CAN DO Descriptor Images: WIDA Consortium
 

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