More DBQs Have Improved Our Scores

Social Studies and World Languages Support Specialist

Higley Unified School District, Arizona

In Higley Unified School Distirct, we administer a pretest in the first week of school for (9-12). It is a reading test, but I think using the DBQ documents and analysis strategies have really improved our kids ability to digest informational text which has become much more of the expectation in the higher grades. I took the ELA coach’s data spread sheet and highlighted just ELA literacy standards that I feel directly cross over and can be impacted by the DBQ project. Standards like citing evidence, summarizing main ideas, identifying Point of View, drawing inferences, evaluating arguments, etc…. Now remember that our middle grades were using the DBQ project with consistency, intent, and fidelity. On those standards across the board, the 9th grades scored the highest with average scores ranging from 80-90%. 10th graders were the second highest average across the board with usual scores in the 70s. 11th graders were next with scores in the 60s. 12th graders brought up the rear with scores can you believe it in the 30-40% range. Now that direct downward trend may correlate to the number of years using the DBQ Project materials. The 9th graders have been working with them consistently for 3-4 years. 10th graders 2-3 years. 11th graders 1-2 years. 12th graders not all that much. It’s not writing, but I think the reading data is pretty telling.

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