Curriculum, Instruction, & Assessment
- Assessment and Grading
- Capturing Kids' Hearts
- Common Core Additional Resources
- I3 Learning Initiative: INNOVATE. INTEGRATE. INSPIRE.
- Learning Standards and Instructional Mandates
- Remote Education Program
Assessment Program in Gower
Illinois legislation requires each school district to report information to ISBE concerning the administration of standardized assessments to students at each school. The law also requires schools to make this information public via the school district’s website or distribution in paper form. Districts can comply with this requirement by linking to the assessment survey results. This will also allow districts to track their completion rate. The survey will dynamically populate data submitted in the previous year for review and editing as needed. Please note that the law defines tests “scored by a non-district entity” as the focus of this data collection effort. We refer to these as “standardized.” View the results of the annual assessment survey submitted by Gower District Administrators to ISBE by using this link: https://www.isbe.net/Pages/AssessmentSurveyResults.aspx
The standardized tests listed below are given at various times throughout the school year as measurements of student achievement and the effectiveness of our programs and curriculum. To learn more about our Academic Performance, visit our dedicated webpage here.
MAP Measure of Academic Progress is given in grades K-8 in the fall, winter, and spring.
Assesses: Reading and Math Achievement and Student Growth
For more information: http://www.nwea.org
CogAT Cognitive Abilities Test is given in grades 2 and 4 (spring).
Assesses: School Aptitude
(Students may be tested in the middle school as needed)
ISA Illinois Science Assessment is given in grades 5 and 8 in the spring
Assesses: Science knowledge and skills
IAR Illinois Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers is given in grades 3-8.
Assesses: English Language Arts and Math
Fitnessgram Offers multiple tests to assess aerobic capacity, body composition, muscular strength, muscular endurance and flexibility. To access more information regarding Fitnessgram please visit this link.
ACCESS English Language Proficiency Test
Administered in January/February to all students in K-8th grade that are receiving English as a Second Language support
Assesses: Reading, Writing, Speaking, and Listening
KIDS Kindergarten Individual Development Survey
This reporting instrument is used annually with all kindergarten students during the fall.
Assesses: Readiness for school in the areas of math, language and literacy development, approaches to learning, and social/emotional development.
Grading in Gower
It is important to remember that students can learn without grades. They cannot learn without formative assessment and feedback!!!
Over the last several years, Gower West has been using a Standards Based Report Card for Kindergarten through 4th grade. Prior to the 2019-2020 school year, the Standards Based Grading model was used in K-2 classrooms. Beginning with the 2019-20 school year, 3rd and 4th grade classrooms adopted the model. Shared as part of the monthly Superintendent’s Report at the Nov. 19, 2019 Board meeting, Supt Report Appendix B – GW Report Card Redesign, was presented as part of the district’s shift to a standards based grading system over time. Policy 6:280 Grading and Promotion was subsequently updated on December 15, 2020 to support this process and to align with the expansion of this grading model to Gower Middle School beginning in the 2021-22 school year.
The following report – Standards Based Grading – Gower School District – was presented to the Board of Education at the regularly scheduled Board meeting held on May 17, 2022 and may serve as a valuable source of information regarding this subject. Additionally, the Gower Foundation Podcast, The Gladiator Soundboard, published an episode dedicated to this topic; What Does Testing, Learning, and Grading Look Like in Gower? and can be accessed by using this link.
Range of Readiness Model in Gower
In April, 2018, Gower School District Officials led the development of the “Range of Readiness Model” as a balanced, research-based and appropriate approach to apply current student performance data to the concept of high school and/or college ‘readiness’. This model was adopted by Gower School District and is being used by other elementary school districts in the area as well as the local high school district. As educators, we know that having information early on about a student’s “readiness” for a particular end goal is helpful in terms of shaping a more personalized educational experience. Intervention, opportunities for acceleration, curriculum and course design are all items that can become much more targeted with reliable “on-track” measures. The model is limited in scope to a student’s NWEA/MAP performance and growth over time, but is helpful in providing insight to and projections for performance later in a student’s academic career on the ACT as well as the SAT through correlation.
To review and or download a full copy of the initial report, Simon, V. (2018). Range of Readiness Model please use this link.
Gower School District 62 is implementing the Capturing Kids’ Process, which involves working with students on the Illinois Social and Emotional Learning Standards in order to help students be successful in all settings. Teachers and students work together to create a “social or class contract” to define how members of the classroom ‘community’ will treat each other. These cornerstone documents are used as a way to build and maintain a supportive environment for all students and are regularly referred to throughout the school year. There are several components to the Capturing Kids’ Process, however the main focus is on a way of being: respectful, respected, building relationships, sharing “Good Things”, making good decisions, self-managing behaviors, and a positive learning environment for all. Since adopting the process in the 2012-2013 school year and making a long-term commitment to building a supportive environment for all students, both Gower West and Gower Middle School have been recognized as National CKH Showcase Schools, making Gower School District a National CKH Showcase District!
To learn more about the Capturing Kids’ Hearts process, please visit their website here.
Continuous improvement and looking for innovative ways to engage students and increase student learning are important goals of the administrative team and teachers. The Gower INNOVATE 62 Committee continues to move the district forward in achieving these goals by crafting a vision for teaching and learning in Gower. In 2013, the INNOVATE 62 Committee designed and began the implementation of the i3 Learning Initiative in Gower with these important goals in mind.
i3 Learning: Innovate, Integrate, and Inspire
will promote innovation in the classroom
will integrate digital learning beyond the traditional classroom setting, and
will inspire students to create content and not simply consume it
The i3 Learning Initiative continues to focus on and result in
Alignment with the Future Ready Framework and pledge taken by Gower 62 Board of Education resolution on Sept. 23, 2014
Alignment with the International Society for Technology in Education (ISTE) Standards
Each student having his or her own device (K-1 iPads, 2-8 Chromebooks) and use of a common learning management system.
College and career readiness through teachers who have become Google Certified and students who use the Google platform extensively.
Focused Professional Development with an emphasis on utilizing more student led strategies and sharpening 21st Century skills.
Additional opportunities for students to take ownership of their learning through access to Gower’s online community.
Classroom instruction that promotes problem solving, small group collaboration, and student-led learning opportunities that stretch beyond the traditional classroom setting.
- Learning Standards and Instructional Mandates
- Download ELA Common Core Standards
- Download Math Common Core Standards
- Curriculum Overview by Grade Level
Parents often ask questions about the learning standards used in our curriculum to found out ‘what is being taught in our classrooms.’ Each of our schools do an excellent job during our Annual Curriculum Night events, held each fall, to provide an overview by grade level and to open the critical lines of communication with our families. We are proud of our family and community partnerships in Gower and work hard to ensure that we are meeting the needs across a school community as diverse as ours.
The following links may be helpful in providing more detailed information when it comes to answering the parent question, ‘What gets taught in my child’s classroom?’
Additionally, more information about the Illinois Learning Standards (Common Core) used in Gower School District 62 can be found in the materials below:
English Language Arts & Literacy
The use of eLearning Days in place of what would otherwise be used as Emergency Closure Days was approved by the Gower Board of Education in 2019 and another forward-thinking action taken by our Future Ready district. This is an exciting opportunity for Gower School District and was made possible by the collaboration between our staff, our administrative team and our parent representatives on the Board.
Remember, the emphasis on the ‘e’ is ‘engagement’!
- e-Learning FAQs
- Gower School District 62 eLearning Daily Schedule
- Gower School District 62 eLearning Overview
- e-Learning Implementation Resources
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ): Our FAQ document represents the questions asked in the Gower Community as we implemented eLearning during the 2018-19 school year as well as questions asked and answered since.
- 8:00 a.m. – 8:30 a.m. – Teacher Planning/preparation
- 8:30 a.m. – eLearning modules posted and period of availability, student engagement, instruction, supervision and support as needed begins
- 8:30 a.m. – 1:30 p.m. – 5-hour block of student engagement, instruction, supervision, monitoring and support as needed
- 1:30 p.m. – 2:00 p.m. – Teacher Duty Free
- 2:00 p.m. – 3:20 p.m. – Verification/assessment of student work/engagement; planning/prep. for ongoing e-Learning modules
- 3:20 p.m. – 3:45 p.m. – Teacher planning/preparation, professional responsibilities
- Download the Gower 62 eLearning Plan
- Open Letter to the Community – The Decision to Call an eLearning ‘Snow Day’
Our Board of Education took an important step in 2014 when they approved the Resolution to ensure that Gower was recognized as a Future Ready district. The Board has continued to support the variety of programs put into place since that commitment was made. Their recent action to approve the use of eLearning Days in place of what would otherwise be used as Emergency Closure Days was no different. This is an exciting opportunity for Gower School District and was made possible by the collaboration between our staff, our administrative team and our parent representatives on the Board.
As reported, the Gower Staff is off and running with a strong approach to engaging students and maintaining continuity of teaching and learning on days that would have otherwise been lost to emergency school closures. We have shared our plan, early on, with the DuPage County Regional Office of Education and appreciate their ongoing support. Subsequently, our plan has also been shared with a number of school districts and we have enjoyed hosting our colleagues from across the area in web and phone conferences to answer their questions as they consider adapting a plan that works best in their community. Please reach out to the District Office directly with any questions you may have. And remember, the emphasis on the ‘e’ is ‘engagement’!
The following items have been helpful to Gower School District Administrators and are posted as resources for other districts to review and utilize as they see fit. And remember, the emphasis on the ‘e’ is ‘engagement’!
- eLearning Day Presentation – DuPage ROE Technology Coordinator Panel – Jan. 28, 2020
PLEASE SHARE YOUR FEEDBACK WITH US!
Our school administrators and staff are happy to answer any questions you may have regarding our eLearning Program. If you have any further questions regarding our e-learning program please reach out to us directly.
Phone Number: (630) 286-4925
Phone Number: (630) 286-4933
Another way to share your feedback about our eLearning Program is to use the following Google Form. Information submitted via the eLearning Feedback Form will be shared with our administrative staff and used with other feedback collected as an ongoing review of our program.