Wednesday, September 3, 2008


Some of you who are teachers may be familiar with DIBELS. It stands for Dynamic Indicators of Basic Early Literacy Skills, and is an oral diagnostic reading assessment that is performed on students individually three times a year.

We test our kindergarten, first and second grade students at the beginning of the year, after Christmas break, and after Spring break. Based on test results we pull kids for intensive intervention with basic reading skills. When we're doing it, we refer to it as "DIBELing."

It takes almost a week to test these kids individually, and sometimes even a little longer. There are two of us (sometimes three) doing it. During the beginning of the year testing, I try to make the kids comfortable and just talk to them about their summer and how things are going in the classroom.

Today I had a little boy named Joe. Joe is repeating first grade. He's not crazy about school, but has a dynamite personality. I worked with him last year a little, and I just love this guy. He has a different first grade teacher this year than he had last year, so I was asking him about things.

Me: So how are things going in Mrs. L's room this year Joe?

Joe: Good.

Me: What do you think of Mrs. L?

Joe (with his lips sort of clenched in a "thinking" look): mmmmmm.....she's number two.

Me: Number Two?

Joe: Yeah, she's my second favorite teacher.

Me: Soooooooo, who is your FIRST favorite teacher?? (as I look at him and grin broadly)

Joe: Well it's sure not YOU!

Me: Why not???

Joe: 'Cause when we come in here to see you, you make us READ!

Imagine that...I make them read, so I've lost out on Teacher of the Year!

As we got started on the actual assessment, something else made me laugh. Part of this assessment requires the children to read nonsense words. It tests whether they can apply the phonics skills that they've learned. Joe came across the nonsense word "doj" and promptly said "douche."

It was all I could do to not laugh out loud. I held my composure until he finished the assessment and was out of the room, and then burst out in laughter.

I've tested at least 50 kids in the past couple of days (and still have many more to do), and no one else has come up with that word for "doj."

I love my job!


Leeann said...

Aw, that was really cute! My Chris used to say "f*ck man" for "truck man" and "fag" for Flag. We used to get some looks when he would tell people he wanted to be a f*ck man when he grew up. ;P

Have you heard of Headsprout? What is your opinion of it?

I wish you could test my first grader!


Jen said...

Hilarious! I love that he can't like you because you make him read.

edbteach said...

Oh my god! 50 kids in two days???

I just tested my 22 students on two seperate assesments and I'm ready to PULL MY HAIR OUT!!

I still have to do some more testing on students who are at-risk - which I think will be half my class! LOL (I'm laughing because if I don't laugh, I'll cry!!)

My kids also took the STAR test today (Computer generated leveling for AR) so we'll se how they did on that.

Angie in OH said...

I don't know how you held your laughter in on the "doj" comment...I think I would have peed my pants! Soooo funny.

My kindergartener went through three years of special needs preschool for his speech delay and artic problems. He still has us in stitches over some of the words he comes up with.

Our favorite right now is when his dad is driving silly and the kids yell that "Dad is disco driving!" Wyatt is yelling right along, but his comes out as "Dad is dick-so driving!" What a hoot!

PERBS said...

Another god one! (I sure miss teaching.)

PERBS said...

good good good good good