What Is NGPF Curriculum's Lexile Level? Pt. 2
A few weeks ago NGPF published our first lexile level blog post and we are back again with a look into the lexile levels found in SC-1.2 Teens and Taxes. Before we dig in, let's quickly review what a lexile level is and how to determine it.
What is a lexile level?
A lexile level is a text’s difficulty level for the reader. During our research, we used a mixture of the following lexile readability tests to determine the text’s grade level, reading level, and average reader’s age:
- Flesch Reading Ease Score
- Gunning Fog
- Flesch-Kincaid Grade Level
- The Coleman-Liau Index
- The SMOG Index
- Automated Readibility Index
- Linsear Write Formula
NGPF’s semester course lesson SC-1.2 Teens and Taxes begins with a Data Crunch instead of a discussion prompt. Data Crunches analyze real life graphs, statistics, and trends with questions that follow. Due to this portion of the lesson being number heavy we used the guiding questions and discussion questions to determine the lexile level. According to our research, the average lexile level for this section of the lesson is 7th grade and the reading level is fairly easy to read.
Teacher Tip: For the Data Crunch it may be helpful to ensure your students understand how to t read the graph before answering the questions on the worksheet. Spending a few moments reviewing the graph with your class will make them feel more confident when answering questions and assist them in analyzing the data presented.
The Reference: Tax Issues as Dependents and Self-Employed Workers follows the Data Crunch as Resource 4 in this lesson. This reference document includes excerpts from two different articles to explain to teens how file a tax return when someone claims you as a dependent or you are self-employed. For this activity, the average lexile level was determined to be 10th grade and the reading level is standard/average to read.
Teacher Tip: Taxes can be a tough subject to explain to students. In this case, it may be helpful to supplement the article by reading it whole group and pausing to check for understanding. Ask your students if they have filed taxes before or if they are currently working. Try to break down the tax language by incorporating math problems using the percentages or earnings mentioned in the excerpts.
Next, students complete the activity PLAY: Should They File a Tax Return? published by NGPF. In this activity, students will determine if people in several different scenarios need to file a tax return. In this case, the activity’s text is determined to be 7th grade and fairly easy to read.
Teacher Tip: Activities are written with concise, clear directions and questions are built for students to answer with little teacher assistance. In this case, we suggest teachers encourage students to read the directions at least twice before starting an activity. In addition, teachers can check for understanding by allowing students to read the directions on their own and then cold-calling on different students to explain to their classmates what they are doing during the activity before getting started.
In conclusion, NGPF’s Taxes unit will have a lot of new vocabulary and information students may have never seen before, but we believe if teachers plan their lessons with that in mind and take the time to break concepts down students should be able to grasp taxes no matter the lexile level!
About the Author
After graduating from the University of Florida's College of Journalism and Communications in 2011, a documentary internship on master teachers led Tori into education. She taught English Language Arts for five years receiving high test results and accolades like Teacher of the Year. In 2017, Tori left the classroom and moved to the Bay Area to focus on helping school districts utilize technology to improve classroom instruction. While training educators on how to use learning management systems and educational software Tori discovered a passion for facilitating professional developments. This passion led her to Next Gen Personal Finance where she is excited to help spread financial literacy to teachers and students all over the country.
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