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Basic Skills Checklists FAQs

Q What skill areas are covered in the checklists?

Basic Concepts, Reading Readiness, Language Arts, Math, Fine Motor, Writing and Independence are the main areas assessed. Please see also the Table of Contents (MSWord 48k) for more detail. The Basic Skills Checklists are not intended to assess every possible developmental area, but rather to select those domains that are commonly targeted during the early learning years.

Q There are over 40 checklists. Do I have to administer all of them?

No. You will select specific checklists appropriate for an individual child. A recent progress note, report card or IEP update can be used as a guide for selecting the domain to be assessed. For example, if the child is a beginning reader, you may want to assess receptive and expressive identification of letters, letter/sound correspondence, and letter sequencing. There is no need to re-administer sections when you are certain the child has mastered them.

Q Are the checklists intended to be administered once a year?

Frequency of administration depends on how quickly the child progresses. It is especially helpful to use the selected checklists in the Fall, midyear and at the end of the school year. In this way, progress is monitored and documented directly on the checklist and can be passed to the next teacher.

Q I see there are several checklists called Parent Checklists. What are these for?

These checklists focus primarily on self care skills that are often initially assessed with parent input including toileting, eating, dressing, and hygiene tasks. Since these are often targeted in individualized school programs, the appropriate checklists can be sent home for parent feedback.

Q Several checklists assess 'School Skills'. What do you mean by this?

I encourage teachers to use these at least three times a year as they provide a good indicator of the level of the child's independence in school routines. Being able to walk from the bus to the classroom, walking in a line with peers, raising a hand for questions, playing with or near peers and transitioning to other locations in the school would be examples of some of the skills targeted here.

Q I teach special needs students in Grade 4. Would these checklists be an appropriate assessment?

In general, skills focus on curriculum outcomes from the early grades; however, often teachers will adapt or add to the checklists to use them with older students.