Elevating expectations for all kids

Tools & Resources

Resources for Educators

Assessments, CMAS & PARCC

Eight Facts about Colorado Measures of Academic Success (CMAS) – This resource explains why it’s important to have aligned tests like CMAS and gives helpful resources for understanding PARCC math and literacy score reports.

CDE’s Colorado Measures of Academic Success (CMAS):  View past results and resources to help prepare students for the Science and Social Studies CMAS assessments.

CDE’s Communication Toolkit for Understanding PARCC Score Reports– Items are designed to help districts and schools communicate with parents about the results for the CMAS English language arts and math tests (PARCC) taken by students last spring.

PARCC Score Report Resources for Educators– resources that provide context to the results and will help educators work with parents to understand them and act upon them.

PARCC Practice Tests Help your students prepare for the PARCC tests in English Language Arts and Math.

PARCC Partnership Resource CenterView PARCC released and practice items, practice tests, scoring rubrics and guides to the scoring, as well as released item sets, answer keys, standards alignment, and sample student responses – scored and annotated.  

Testing Playbook by Education First – Check out their “Fewer and Better Local Assessments: A Toolkit for Educators” which outlines how to streamline the battery of tests we ask our students to take.   

Communicating to Parents

State Testing Updates and Communication Resources for PARCC Score Reports – Information about the upcoming CMAS testing window, changes to testing for 2016, and resources for talking about PARCC score reports.

Six Key Facts about Colorado Academic Standards – Find out how the Colorado Academic Standards (CAS) were developed and how they help students.

Suggested Activities for Sharing PARCC Score Reports & Resources with Parents – Strategies for sharing PARCC score reports with parents – ranging in time commitment and engagement from hosting a parent night to sharing via newsletter or handouts sent home – samples are included.

CDE Communications Toolkit Provides fact sheets and templates for district and school leaders regarding score release, assessments, and the Colorado Academic Standards.

Educator Explainer – PARCC Score Report Questions and answers about last spring’s administration of the PARCC English language arts and math tests.

The Honesty Gap Many states have an “honesty gap” between the information available to parents and how students are actually performing. The good news is that most states have been working to eliminate the honesty gap.
Find out what the gap looks like in your state.

Parent Resources – PARCC Score Report Great resources for help in understanding PARCC score reports and how to help at home.

CHC’s Standards & Assessments PowerPoint In-depth presentation intended to inform parents, educators and decision makers about the history, background and changes to standards and assessments in Colorado. Feel free to use, redistribute and tailor to fit your local needs.

Planning and Professional Development

Achieve the Core Professional development resources for educators and district leaders searchable by grade level and subject area.

ASCD – EduCore Provides videos, documents, webinars, modules and web resources for use in Professional Learning Communities for literacy and math instruction. Resources are sorted by grade level.

CK-12 – CK-12’s free, open source content and tools include an extensive library of content, covering a full range of math and science topics, searchable by state, standard, grade and subject. This includes digital textbooks as well as, extensive lessons and practice activities across thousands of math and science concepts.

Colorado Academic Standards Online Sortable Tool All standards can be searched by discipline and grade level using this tool from CDE

Common Curriculum Tool for lesson and unit plan creation, collaboration and sharing created by teachers.

Edcite Common Core aligned question creator and library for K-12 teachers.

Edutopia Resources for implementing the standards, lesson planning and lesson sharing.

EdReports This independent non-profit has released free, web-based reviews of current K-8 math instructional materials. The teacher-led process raised good questions for textbook consumers about the alignment of current options, reviewing popular textbooks to see whether the math content is aligned to the standards.

Form Swift – Free, Common Core-aligned lesson plans for math, science and language arts.

Illuminations Designed by the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics, this website hosts over 600 lesson plans searchable by K-12 standards that focus on real-world application and over 100 virtual manipulatives and activities.

National Council for Teachers of English This resource offers classroom-tested lesson plans providing ready resources for educators working with students aged from Pre-K to high school.

National Council of Teachers of Mathematics Provides resources and professional development for implementing math curriculum, instruction, and assessment.

PARCC Practice Tests Help your students prepare for the PARCC tests in English Language Arts and Math.

PARCC Partnership Resource CenterView PARCC released and practice items, practice tests, scoring rubrics and guides to the scoring, as well as released item sets, answer keys, standards alignment, and sample student responses – scored and annotated.

Testing Playbook by Education First – Check out their “Fewer and Better Local Assessments: A Toolkit for Educators” which outlines how to streamline the battery of tests we ask our students to take.