About Benchmark Passages
- Each level has 2 fiction and 2 nonfiction passages.
- Each level has at least 1 fiction-nonfiction passage pair on the same topic.
- Each passage uses a level-appropriate percentage of words from leveled books at that reading level.
aa-E = 100%
F-J = 95% + 5% new words
K-Z = 90% + 10% new words
- The text of the entire passage is used in the Running Record.
- Most are one page long, but upper level passages can be two pages.
- ALL are available on Raz-Kids.com
Benchmark Passages are short text selections to help place students at their instructional levels for leveled reading sessions and to assess their readiness to progress to the next level.
How Do I Use Benchmark Passages?
- Give a student a Benchmark Passage he or she has never seen before to read aloud. If you prefer to use familiar text, use the fiction-nonfiction topic pair at each level. Use one passage from the pair to support a student's understanding of the topic before assessing with the other passage.
- Record the student's reading behavior using the passage's Running Record form.
- If a student scores 90 percent, assess the student's comprehension using a Quick Check from Level C-Z or a Retelling Rubric.
- If a student scores from 90%-94% percent on the running record and answers comprehension questions at 80%-94%, he or she is at an instructional level.
(For more details, see Running Records)