Leaving No American Indian/Alaska Native Behind: Identifying Reading Strengths and Needs
In this study, the author looks beyond high-stakes assessment to highlight reading strengths of and needs for a group of fourth grade American Indian students in order to provide specific information to guide instruction. A description of skills considered basic to proficient reading is followed by an explanation of the assessment methods used. The majority of the students demonstrate fairly strong skills in phonemic awareness, vocabulary when assessed orally, and basic word identification (phonics). Reading with a rate appropriate to purpose and comprehension strategies are identified as instructional needs. Explicit instruction in the identified areas is suggested as vital to the future success of these students and may provide a starting point for the identification and instruction of other American Indian/Alaska Native students with similar needs.