Helping Teachers Focus on the Skills to Eliminate COVID-Related Learning Loss

Renaissance has released a collection of free resources to predict and mitigate any learning gaps students have experienced as a result of the COVID-19 school closures. Tailored to each state’s standards, these resources are designed to help teachers identify the most critical skills, dubbed “Focus Skills,” that students may have missed as a result of learning disruptions.

Determined through extensive research to be the skills most critical for accelerating learning and closing learning gaps, Focus Skills unlock student understanding of key ideas in multiple subjects. Identified as key skills within Renaissance’s learning progressions—the path students take as they move from a novice to an expert level of understanding, according to the standards of each state—Focus Skills are essential for student progression and are prerequisites for learning future skills. Focus Skills are also transferrable skills that help students achieve success in adjacent domains and subjects.

Though the acquisition of any new skill affects learning, Focus Skills are the smaller subset of key building blocks that are vital for furthering learning. By prioritizing mastery of Focus Skills, educators can help students develop the essential knowledge and skills to move to the next level. To help educators create a plan to bring their students up to speed this fall, Renaissance has released a collection of Focus Skills assets, including:

  • Interactive visualizations of each state’s Focus Skills and domains, with the ability to drill down into specific skill details, offering quick insight into key skills students may have missed in previous years; and
  • A research brief explaining the importance of Focus Skills and how they inform teachers as they decide how to best help students recover from learning disruptions and get back on track for the new academic year. Renaissance.com/Focus-Skills.

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