Kindergarten Achievement Gap Drops to Zero

Julie Lake
Kindergarten teacher, Howe Elementary School, Des Moines, Iowa

Since we started academic teaming through Schools for Rigor, our kindergarten scores here at Howe have been the highest in the district. And last year, I believe, the highest in the state. One hundred percent of our kids met their expected growth for the last two years. Usually, I have a section of kids who are working on getting it, kids who got it, and then a little group of kids who have high achievement and high growth. In the last two years, the group of kids who are way above the expected growth is so much bigger. So, we’re always having to make things more rigorous at more complex levels because the kids are just moving along a lot faster. I believe it’s because they’re doing all the problem solving and they’re working in teams.

Source: Toth, M.D., & Sousa, D.A. (2019). The power of student teams: Achieving social, emotional, and cognitive learning in every classroom through academic teaming (p. 86). West Palm Beach, FL: Learning Sciences International.