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As told by 2018 State Teachers of the Year


In this blog, the third in the series featuring conversations with 2018 State Teachers of the Year, we discussed whether teaching life skills had a place in the classroom. Teachers of the Year were asked to respond to this question:


Do you believe preparing students to be “life ready” is part of your teaching practice or responsibility?
100% of the teachers fervently said, "YES!"


Then we challenged with a second question, to think about what that looked like for today’s students:

Beyond academic subjects, what other skills will students need to be ready for life? And what needs to shift in K-12 to better prepare students for being life ready?

These info-graphics capture their thoughts.


Download info-graphic: Life-Readiness is More Than Academics 


Download info-graphic: Prepare Students for Being Life Ready 


What do you think is fundamentally key for our kids to be life ready in today’s world? And how does the school system, and you, the teacher, fit in to that? We would love to hear from you in the comments section!

Over the years, many teachers have asked questions like, “Which MAP Growth report should I start with?”, or “Which MAP Growth report is the most effective?” or even, “What order should I review reports in?”, and like all good questions, the correct answers to each of these questions is that it depends.


The best place to start with MAP Growth reports will depend on multiple factors, ranging from the time of the school year to the unique characteristics of the students themselves. So from this perspective, the question to start with is less about which report to review first, and more about what questions you’re using the data to answer. To help you navigate the different MAP Growth reports we’ve put together a list of five steps to discovering and using MAP Growth reports effectively.


  1. Verify that your account works and your students are rostered accurately. While this may sound like a basic first step, it’s one that’s crucial to get right—before you start looking for the right report, you need to be certain your account has access to the right data. Start by logging in with your credentials and making sure you see all of the students you expect to. (If you need a refresher on how to login, there’s a good one here.) If anything doesn’t look right to you, or if you need help getting access, contact your local MAP Growth Administrator.

  2. Determine which reports are most useful based on the time of year. Finding the “right” MAP Growth report will have a lot to do with the time of the school year. For example, many teachers use MAP Growth assessments in September to help each student set individual growth goals, and in those cases, the Student Goal Setting Worksheet is a great place to start. Conversely, after spring assessments, many teachers use the Class Breakdown by Projected Proficiency to see how their students have progressed as readers. For more information about how and when to use different MAP Growth reports, consult How NOT to get Overwhelmed by Data: Teacher Reports to use Throughout the Year, a year-round guide to MAP Growth reports from the 2016 Virginia State Teacher of the Year Natalie DiFusco-Funk.

  3. Get to know the 10 most popular MAP Growth teacher reports. Once you’ve spent some time determining which reports are most appropriate for your goals and the time of year, then consult our list of the Top 10 MAP Growth Reports for teachers. Where step two was about using data to answer your existing questions, this step is about exploring the other ways MAP Growth reports can help inform and augment your teaching in the classroom.

  4. Consult the NWEA Reports Finder to locate additional reports that may be helpful. Once you’re comfortable with the reports you’ve found so far, move on to the MAP Growth Reports Finder to review the complete list of MAP Growth reports—it even indicates whether a report shows data at the classroom level, the school level, or the district level. (Keep in mind that the reports you can see with your MAP Growth login are defined by your role and your students.)

    Bonus pro tip about the MAP Growth Reports Finder: if you copy and paste the table into Microsoft Excel or Google Sheets, you can sort and filter the reports, which can be helpful for seeing similar ones grouped together.

  5. Share your best practices with other teachers. Part of your MAP Growth reports journey will be finding the reports that are most relevant for your students and the specific needs of your school, so it’s important to share your insights with your colleagues to help them get as much out of MAP Growth as you do. Whether you’ve found a particularly relevant report, or you want to start a discussion with other educators about how you might apply specific report data, it’s important to have those conversations—building a data-driven culture requires collaboration!

No matter where you are in the school year, you can use this five-step process as a divining rod to ensure you’re getting the most relevant, practical data from all of the available reports. Try it with your next set of MAP Growth reports—and if you ever want to discuss your data with an NWEA expert, you can schedule a Professional Learning workshop.