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Assessing Language and Literacy with Bilingual Students


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Table of Contents

1. Understanding Assessment with Multilingual Students
2. Using Assessment to Support Instruction
3. Going Beyond Skills: Learning about Students' Cultural and Affective Resources
4. The Growth of Oral Language
5. Assessing Beginning Reading for Emergent Bilinguals
6. Assessing Academic Language and Comprehension in the Content Areas
7. Assessing Writing
8. Creating Responsive Systems for Connecting Assessment and Instruction
Appendix. Assessment Resources

About the Author

Lori Helman, PhD, is Professor in the Department of Curriculum and Instruction at the University of Minnesota, where she is also Director of the Minnesota Center for Reading Research. Her research interests include literacy development, assessment, and instruction in English and Spanish; word study and vocabulary learning and teaching; and ways to support literacy professionals to implement schoolwide systems of support in literacy. She is the author or editor of several books, including Literacy Development with English Learners, Second Edition: Research-Based Instruction in Grades K-6 and Assessing Language and Literacy with Bilingual Students: Practices to Support English Learners. Anne C. Ittner, PhD, is Assistant Professor of Literacy Education in the Division of Education and Leadership at Western Oregon University. Her research interests include literacy education for emergent bilinguals in elementary schools, specifically in the areas of assessment, intervention, and multi-tiered systems of support, and literacy professional development and teacher education. Kristen L. McMaster, PhD, is Professor of Special Education in the Department of Educational Psychology at the University of Minnesota. Dr. McMaster's work addresses creating conditions for successful response to intervention for students at risk and students with disabilities. Specific research interests include promoting teachers' use of data-based decision making and evidence-based instruction, and developing intensive, individualized interventions for students for whom generally effective instruction is not sufficient. Dr. McMaster is a former special education teacher.


"I have been waiting for exactly this book! It truly values what multilingual students bring to the classroom and acknowledges the intimate relationship between language and literacy development. This is a perfect book-study text for any elementary teacher. Readers are supported with helpful graphics, explanations of foundational ideas and terms in each chapter, vignettes that demonstrate the big ideas, and clear connections between instruction and assessment. I can't wait to use this text in my Literacy Methods course!"--Allison Briceno, EdD, Department of Teacher Education, San Jose State University

"Packed with sensible and useful information for educators. Through real-world examples and helpful visuals, Helman, Ittner, and McMaster describe a multitude of asset-based tools and practices to assess oral language, reading, and writing. The authors explain how to put their ideas into action through systematic, collaborative schoolwide approaches. Thorough and astute, this book skillfully interweaves foundational theories on assessing linguistically diverse students with practical information. It is a 'must read' for educators seeking meaningful, effective ways of getting to know the multilingual children in their schools and providing inclusive and responsive systems of support."--Amy Frederick, PhD, Department of Teacher Education, University of Wisconsin-River Falls

"Finally, a resource I can recommend to teachers and administrators that not only highlights multilingual learners as assets to our schools, but also shows how best practices for ESL instruction fit into multi-tiered systems of support. Helman, Ittner, and McMaster have written the quintessential guide to addressing the unique needs of English learners. This book is a 'must read' for educators working toward equity in any language development program."--Andrea Saenz, MA, ESL and Equity Program Coordinator, West St. Paul-Mendota Heights-Eagan Area Schools, Minnesota

"As the population of English learners continues to increase across the nation, it is imperative that educators are prepared with evidence-based practices for accurate, fair, and unbiased assessment. Assessment has been an understudied area with English learners, making this book an invaluable resource for teacher preparation programs and inservice professional development. Importantly, the authors' strength-based approach acknowledges what English learners bring to the task of learning in school, including their funds of knowledge in their home language and culture. The book is well organized and carefully addresses many pressing issues that have largely been overlooked in other resources."--Lillian Duran, PhD, Department of Special Education and Clinical Sciences, University of Oregon

"This comprehensive book discusses a range of assessment types, with a welcome focus on instructionally relevant assessments. Particularly helpful is the emphasis on building on the cultural, linguistic, literacy, and affective resources of English learners. With plenty of supportive charts, specific strategies, and examples, the book provides both aspiring and experienced teachers a solid grounding for productive classroom practices."--Susana Dutro, Co-Founder and CEO, E.L. Achieve, Vista, California-

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