The Georgia Kindergarten Inventory of Developing Skills (GKIDS) is a year-long, performance-based assessment aligned to the state mandated content standards. The goal of the assessment program is to provide teachers with information about the level of instructional support needed by individual students entering kindergarten and first grade. GKIDS will allow teachers to assess student performance during instruction, record student performance in an on-line database, and generate reports for instructional planning, progress reports, report cards, SST, and/or parent conferences. Throughout the year, teachers may assess students and record GKIDS data based on their system’s curriculum map or report card schedule. At the end of the year, summary reports and individual student reports will be generated based on the data the teacher has entered throughout the year.
The primary purpose of GKIDS is to provide ongoing diagnostic information about kindergarten students’ developing skills in English Language Arts, Math, Science, Social Studies, Personal/Social Development, and Approaches to Learning. GKIDS will also provide a summary of student performance in English Language Arts and Mathematics at the end of the kindergarten school year. GKIDS should serve as one indicator of first grade readiness. GKIDS will serve both a formative and summative role in assessing kindergarten students.
Domains of Learning
There are seven areas or domains of learning that are assessed as part of GKIDS:
- English Language Arts
- Social Studies (optional)
- Science (optional)
- Approaches to Learning
- Personal and Social Development
- Motor Skills (optional)
ELA and Mathematics are based on and aligned to the Common Core Georgia Performance Standards (CCGPS) for kindergarten. The academic areas of Science and Social Studies remain aligned to the Georgia Performance Standards (GPS). Four of these domains (ELA, Math, Science, and Social Studies) are based on and aligned to the Georgia Performance Standards for kindergarten. There are also three non-academic domains that contribute to a student’s readiness for first grade (Approaches to Learning, Personal and Social Development, and Motor Skills). The domains of Social Studies, Science, and Motor Skills are optional. Systems may require teachers to use GKIDS to collect and report information locally on student performance in these areas, but this data will not be part of the end-of-the-year report, and it is not required to be entered into the GKIDS Data Entry and Reporting website unless required by the system. Systems have the option of requiring only some elements of Social Studies, Science, or Motor Skills to be assessed, all of the elements of these domains to be assessed, or none of the elements of these domains to be assessed.
Many CCGPS and GPS standards have multiple elements. In GKIDS, students are assessed at the element level, where possible.
ELA, Math, Social Studies, and Science standards will be assessed using two to five performance levels for each element.
- Not Yet Demonstrated
- Meets the Standard
- Exceeds the Standard
There are three non-academic areas that can be assessed using GKIDS: Approaches to Learning, Personal and Social Development, and Motor Skills. The Motor Skills domain is optional. Teachers may choose to record motor skills data only for students that demonstrate an area of concern. Students are assessed using the following performance levels:
Area of Concern
- Consistently Demonstrating
The number of levels was determined by the GKIDS Advisory Committee and will be specific to each element of the CCGPS or GPS. The number of performance levels is based on the range of student performance that can be observed for each element.
Flexible Model of Assessment
GKIDS does not have specified assessment activities. The teacher (or local system) decides which assessment activities to use and how frequently to assess. Teachers may use assessment activities that cover multiple elements at one time and/or assess multiple children at a single setting. Teachers may assess by observing student performance during the course of regular classroom instruction or by an assessment activity of the teacher’s choice. Because teachers have the freedom to assess according to the individual needs of each student, standard accommodations are allowed if the accommodations are a part of the student’s IEP, IAP, or ELL/TPC plan.
Approaches to Learning
The Approaches to Learning domain of GKIDS includes the following three general categories:
- Curiosity and InitiativeCreativity/Problem Solving
- Demonstrates self confidence/positive attitude
- Adjusts well to changes in routines and environments
- Expresses emotions and needs through appropriate words and actions
- Treats others with respect in words and actions
- Shows caring for others
- Follows directions and school rules
- Respects the property of others
- Works cooperatively with others
Statements of observable student behaviors related to fine and gross motor skills are assessed in this category.
Except for the end of year summary report, there are no state-mandated testing windows for GKIDS. Systems may require testing windows based on their own unique schedules, reporting information at any time as required by the local district. Systems may also teach and assess the CCGPS and GPS based upon their own schedules as well.
Pre-printed test booklets and activity kits will not be provided with GKIDS. This Administration Manual includes an assessment page for each element of the CCGPS and GPS. The assessment page contains the CCGPS and GPS standard and element, performance levels for assessing the element, sample assessment activities, and instructional suggestions for teachers and/or parents. These assessment pages are arranged by domain in sections 2-5 of this manual. Some elements also have resource pages that can be used to assess or document student performance. Teachers may use common classroom materials for assessment activities. Rather than recording student performance on an answer document, teachers will use the GKIDS Data Entry and Reporting Website.
GKIDS Data Entry and Reporting Website
The GKIDS data entry and reporting website will be available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week (except for scheduled maintenance) for teachers to enter student data. The web address is https://gkids.tsars.uga.edu/start. The website allows teachers to enter and manage data throughout the school year. Teachers can enter data by student or by element for the entire class. See section X of the Administration Manual for GKIDS website instructions.
Teacher-Generated (Formative) Reports
Teachers have the option of generating reports (on-screen and PDF) at any time during the year for instructional planning, progress reports, report cards, SST or parent conferences. On the website, teachers can select a student report by element, standard, or strand. These reports will indicate data the teacher has entered for all domains. A class report is also available. See Section XI of the Administration Manual for sample reports.
End-of-the-Year (Summative) Reports
After the final data is entered in late spring, an individual student report can be generated which will include English Language Arts, Mathematics, Approaches to Learning, and Personal and Social Development. School, system, and state summary reports created at the end of the year will include only English Language Arts, Mathematics, Approaches to Learning and Personal/Social Development.