How the New Jersey Student Learning Assessment (NJSLA) Compares to PARCC

In October of 2018, the New Jersey Department of Education (NJDOE) announced that they were, as many states have also chosen to do, opting out of the PARCC assessment in lieu of administering their own New Jersey Student Learning Assessment (NJSLA) this spring. At that time, the NJDOE gave limited information or resources to educators, simply stating, “the tests will have fewer questions and take less time to administer.” In November, the units and testing times were released; however, details about the content of the new assessments were not yet divulged.

Women’s History Month Resources on Edcite

Happy Women’s History Month! Teachers in the Edcite community have shared many assignments that honor great women and teach students about women’s history.  Check out the assignments below that can be used in elementary, middle school, and high school. Use these throughout the month of March or any day of the year!

5 Tips for Using the Assignment Library

Edcite has over 35,000 assignments in the public assignment library covering grade levels, subjects, and standards! Every day teachers in the Edcite community share new assignments into the library. You can also find state released practice tests digitized by the Edcite Team and other high-quality assessments from organizations such as Eureka Math and Achieve the Core.

Why 3rd Grade Literacy Is Pivotal

In my recent post about the current status of the academic gap, I stated that many agree that the academic gap is a literacy gap. As a result, many states and agencies have placed significant emphasis on literacy, focusing particularly on reading proficiency by 3rd grade. Why literacy and why this age? Well, the Anne E. Casey Foundation says 3rd grade reading has big implications, so let’s unpack that. 

The Truth Behind the Academic Gap

Education is meant to be the great equalizer for society, but reality shows continued disparity in terms of educational outcomes along the lines of race and income. The achievement gap, the opportunity gap, the academic gap—these all refer to a systemic difference in educational performance for students of color compared to their white peers or for students in poverty compared to students in more affluent communities. There is something wrong with a system that continues to replicate an outcome of inequity. Though there is much debate about its origin, we’ve heard insanity defined as, “doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results.” Yet, according to Teach For America, here we are with a “public school system [that] is remarkably impervious to innovation, adaptation, and change” and that “hasn’t changed in 100 years.”

How to Cultivate a Culture of Reading

At any moment of the day, a variety of stimuli are vying for our students’ attention. Video games. Instagram. Snapchat. Twitter. Texting. Facetime. The list goes on and on. Thus, in order for a kid to choose a book over all the other competing options, we must cultivate a culture of reading. Reading must be equally as “cool” as Fortnite. Period. Here are three tips for cultivating a culture of reading in your classrooms and schools.

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