See what a Fountas and Pinnell reading assessment looks like

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In recent weeks, students and teachers in Palliser's elementary schools completed a fall benchmark assessment of their reading level and skills. The division uses an assessment tool developed by Fountas and Pinnell. 

All students through Grade 6 are assessed using this benchmark tool in fall and in spring, and students in Grade 7 and above are also assessed if there is concern about their literacy. The fall assessment gives teachers information about what reading skills the individual student has already mastered and which skills need to be taught. The spring assessment demonstrates whether the teachers’ instruction efforts have resulted in progress for the student, and leaves enough time before the school year ends for the teacher to tweak instruction as needed.

Unless you are a teacher who has assessed a student or a student who has been assessed, the process might be a bit of mystery.

To help you understand what this assessment looks like and what valuable information it provides the teacher, we asked Palliser Literacy Coach Bev Smith and a student volunteer to let us videotape an assessment in progress.

This 4½-minute video shows an assessment in action and shares Smith’s comments about the assessment process, as well as her simple advice for how you as parents/guardians can help young people develop as strong readers and literate citizens.

For more information on Palliser’s literacy program, please visit our Literacy section of the website at

For more videos about what literacy looks like in Palliser, please see the video series at