Each year, Niles District 71 staff complete AIMSweb benchmarking assessments to measure students' academic growth and progress in reading and math. Information from these curriculum-based measurements (CBM) is gathered in the fall, winter and spring. Administrators and teachers use the results to assist with instructional planning. The information helps teachers plan differentiated instruction for students who are above or below average relative to their peers.

Kindergarten students are assessed in early literacy and early numeracy skills. Early literacy skills consist of identifying letter names, identifying letter sounds and breaking down sounds in words. Early numeracy skills consist of oral counting, identifying numbers, identifying a missing number and identifying the larger number.

First grade students are assessed in a combination of early literacy and numeracy skills. The early literacy measures focus on identification of letter sounds and breaking down sounds within words, and then advance to reading grade-level passages aloud to assess the number of words per minute read correctly. The numeracy skills assessments begin with number identification, identifying a missing number and identifying the larger number, and then progress to basic computation skills.

In grades two through eight, students' reading development is assessed by having students read grade-level passages aloud to assess the number of words per minute read correctly. This is an outstanding overall indicator/predictor of global reading achievement. In the area of mathematics, both computation and applied skill development are assessed.

The results for your child will be displayed on a chart similar to the example below:

Reading - Curriculum Based Management graph

The above chart displays an individual student’s reading achievement compared to other classmates in the same grade during fall data collection.

  • The average range is represented by scores in the green rectangles. In the example above, the average range in the fall extends from approximately 94 to 150 words read correctly.
  • National median performance is represented by the single horizontal line inside the green rectangle. In the example above, the median performance level is approximately 121 words read correctly. The thick black line is the target line.
  • Student performance is indicated by a circle. This graph indicates that the student read approximately 125 words per minute correctly in the fall, which is the average range compared to peers nationally.

Please note that this is only one indicator of your child’s overall academic achievement. Please contact your child’s teacher if you have any questions concerning interpreting your child’s performance.