Informal Reading Assessments: Examples

The following are sample charts you can use when assessing students informally in the classroom. Most of the assessments here should be given one-on-one.

It is important that you have a non-distracting, comfortable testing environment for students, and that the rest of the class is engaged in a task or assignment and working quietly. It's even better if you can arrange for another teacher to be present while you are performing assessments.

Concepts of print

Sit in a quiet corner of the room with a student. Give the student a storybook and ask the questions on the form below.

This form can be used several times over the course of the year. Write the date in the space marked yes or no. Tasks that are not successfully completed should be periodically tested until the student can accomplish all tasks with ease and confidence.

 Task successfully completed by student?YesNo
1.Recognizes the front of a book                      
2.Recognizes the back of a book  
3.Able to identify the title of a book  
4.Able to identify a word  
5.Able to identify a letter  
6.Able to identify a space  
7.Able to identify where teacher should begin reading  
8.Able to identify the end of a sentence (punctuation)  
9.   
10.   

Rhyming

Teacher: "Do you know what rhyming words are?" If the child says "yes" ask him or her to tell you two rhyming words. If he or she answers "no" or incorrectly then explain: "Rhyming words are words that end with the same sound. For example, the words cat and mat rhyme. I'm going to say two words. I want you to tell me if they sound alike at the end."

Teacher: "Sun/Fun"

Say each word pair listed below. If the student responds correctly, circle Yes. If the student responds incorrectly, circle No.

 Do these two words sound alike at the end?Child's Response
1.bagbunYesNo
2.henpenYesNo
3.footbamYesNo
4.ratsatYesNo
5.pigwigYesNo
6.  YesNo
7.  YesNo
8.  YesNo
9.  YesNo
10.  YesNo

Identifying initial sounds

Teacher: "Sometimes words start with the same sound, like in the words: fat and fun. Both of these words start with the sound /f/. I'm going to say two different words, and I want you to tell me if the words start with the same sound. Let's try one."

Teacher: "Do the words bag and boat start with the same sound?"

Say each word pair listed below. If the student responds correctly, circle Yes. If the student responds incorrectly, circle No.

 Do these two words start with the same sound?Child's Response
1.hatcomeYesNo
2.penpigYesNo
3.bakestemYesNo
4.cutcapYesNo
5.mopmanYesNo
6.  YesNo
7.  YesNo
8.  YesNo
9.  YesNo
10.  YesNo

Blending words

Teacher: "Let's play 'Guess My Word'. I'm going to say a word but I'm going to say it slowly. I want you to see if you can guess the word I'm trying to say. For example, can you guess this word?" /s/-/at/

If the student responds correctly, circle Correct. If the student responds incorrectly, circle Incorrect.

 Can you guess this word?Child's Response
1./c//ap/CorrectIncorrect
2./r//un/CorrectIncorrect
3./j//ump/CorrectIncorrect
4./p//ig/CorrectIncorrect
5./b//all/CorrectIncorrect
6.  CorrectIncorrect
7.  CorrectIncorrect
8.  CorrectIncorrect
9.  CorrectIncorrect
10.  CorrectIncorrect

Phoneme segmentation

Teacher: "Now let's try something different. Let's play another word game. I'm going to tell you a word. I want you to stretch that word, like you do a rubber band, into the different sounds heard in the word. Let's do a practice one. If I said the word cat you would say /c/- /a/- /t/. Let's try another."

 Can you stretch this word?Correct Response
1.pig/p/-/i/-/g/ 
2.at/a/-/t/ 
3.bag/b/-/a/-/g/ 
4.sun/s/-/u/-/n/ 
5.pop/p/-/o/-/p/ 
6.   
7.   
8.   
9.   
10.   

Phoneme manipulation

Teacher: "Let's play another word game. I'm going to tell you a word. I want you to say the word with the /m/ sound at the beginning. Let's do a practice one. If I said the word bat you would say mat. Let's try another."

 Can you say this word with the /m/ sound at the beginning?Correct AnswerChild's Response
1.ranmanCorrectIncorrect
2.rapmapCorrectIncorrect
3.popmopCorrectIncorrect
4.penmenCorrectIncorrect
5.ratmatCorrectIncorrect
6.  CorrectIncorrect
7.  CorrectIncorrect
8.  CorrectIncorrect
9.  CorrectIncorrect
10.  CorrectIncorrect

Phoneme deletion

Teacher: "Let's play another word game. I'm going to tell you a word. I want you to say the word without the first sound. Let's do a practice one. If I said the word fan you would say an. Let's try another."

 Can you say this word without the first sound?Correct AnswerChild's Response
1.wininCorrectIncorrect
2.handandCorrectIncorrect
3.pupupCorrectIncorrect
4.tapeapeCorrectIncorrect
5.rakeakeCorrectIncorrect
6.  CorrectIncorrect
7.  CorrectIncorrect
8.  CorrectIncorrect
9.  CorrectIncorrect
10.  CorrectIncorrect

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