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List of Benchmarks for Language Arts

Standard 8.Uses listening and speaking strategies for different purposes
  Level Pre-K (Grade Pre-K)
   1. Speaks clearly enough to be understood by unfamiliar adults and uses appropriate levels of volume, tone, and inflection
   2. Uses new vocabulary to describe feelings, thoughts, experiences, and observations
   3. Speaks expressively (e.g., uses different voices for various characters)
   4. Uses descriptive language (e.g., color words; size words, such as bigger, smaller; shape words)
   5. Tells stories based on personal experience or make-believe
   6. Asks questions to obtain information
   7. Answers simple questions
   8. Follows conversation rules (e.g., taking turns, making relevant comments; staying on topic) when talking with peers and adults
   9. Creates or acts out familiar stories, songs, rhymes, and plays in play activities
   10. Retells a story with attention to the sequence of main events
   11. Listens for a variety of purposes (e.g., to gain and share information, to perform a task, for enjoyment, to learn what happened in a story, to converse with an adult or peer)
   12. Understands messages in conversations (e.g. responds differently based on purpose of messages in conversation; attends and responds to conversations)
   13. Follows one- and two-step directions
   14. Understands basic conversational vocabulary
   15. Discriminates among the sounds of spoken language
   16. Knows rhyming sounds and simple rhymes (e.g., identifies rhymes and rhyming sounds)
   17. Knows that words are made up of sounds (e.g., that words can begin alike, sound alike)
   18. Knows that words are made up of syllables
   19. Listens to a variety of fiction, nonfiction, poetry, drama, rhymes, and songs
  Level I (Grade K-2)
   1. Makes contributions in class and group discussions (e.g., reports on ideas and personal knowledge about a topic, initiates conversations, connects ideas and experiences with those of others)
   2. Asks and responds to questions (e.g., about the meaning of a story, about the meaning of words or ideas)
   3. Follows rules of conversation and group discussion (e.g., takes turns, raises hand to speak, stays on topic, focuses attention on speaker)
   4. Uses different voice level, phrasing, and intonation for different situations (e.g., small group settings, informal discussions, reports to the class)
   5. Uses level-appropriate vocabulary in speech (e.g., number words; words that describe people, places, things, events, location, actions; synonyms, antonyms; homonyms, word analogies, common figures of speech)
   6. Gives and responds to oral directions
   7. Recites and responds to familiar stories, poems, and rhymes with patterns (e.g., relates information to own life; describes character, setting, plot)
   8. Knows differences between language used at home and language used in school
  Level II (Grade 3-5)
   1. Contributes to group discussions
   2. Asks questions in class (e.g., when he or she is confused, to seek others’ opinions and comments)
   3. Responds to questions and comments (e.g., gives reasons in support of opinions, responds to others’ ideas)
   4. Listens to classmates and adults (e.g., does not interrupt, faces the speaker, asks questions, summarizes or paraphrases to confirm understanding, gives feedback, eliminates barriers to effective listening)
   5. Uses strategies to convey a clear main point when speaking (e.g., expresses ideas in a logical manner, uses specific vocabulary to establish tone and present information)
   6. Uses level-appropriate vocabulary in speech (e.g., familiar idioms, similes, word play)
   7. Makes basic oral presentations to class (e.g., uses subject-related information and vocabulary; includes content appropriate to the audience; relates ideas and observations; incorporates visual aids or props; incorporates several sources of information)
   8. Uses a variety of nonverbal communication skills (e.g., eye contact, gestures, facial expressions, posture)
   9. Uses a variety of verbal communication skills (e.g., projection, tone, volume, rate, articulation, pace, phrasing)
   10. Organizes ideas for oral presentations (e.g., uses an introduction and conclusion; uses notes or other memory aids; organizes ideas around major points, in sequence, or chronologically; uses traditional structures, such as cause-and-effect, similarity and difference, posing and answering a question; uses details, examples, and anecdotes to clarify information)
   11. Listens for specific information in spoken texts (e.g., plot details or information about a character in a short story read aloud, information about a familiar topic from a radio broadcast)
   12. Understands the main ideas and supporting details in spoken texts (e.g., presentations by peers or quest speakers, a current affairs report on the radio)
   13. Listens to and understands persuasive messages (e.g., television commercials, commands and requests, pressure from peers)
   14. Interprets the use of nonverbal cues used in conversation
   15. Knows specific ways in which language is used in real-life situations (e.g., buying something from a shopkeeper, requesting something from a parent, arguing with a sibling, talking to a friend)
   16. Understands that language reflects different regions and cultures (e.g., sayings; expressions; usage; oral traditions and customs; historical, geographical, and societal influences on language)
  Level III (Grade 6-8)
   1. Plays a variety of roles in group discussions (e.g., critical listener, discussion leader, facilitator)
   2. Asks questions to seek elaboration and clarification of ideas
   3. Uses strategies to enhance listening comprehension (e.g., takes notes; organizes, summarizes, and paraphrases spoken ideas and details)
   4. Listens in order to understand topic, purpose, and perspective in spoken texts (e.g., of a guest speaker, of an informational video, of a televised interview, of radio news programs)
   5. Uses level-appropriate vocabulary in speech (e.g., metaphorical language, specialized language, sensory details)
   6. Makes oral presentations to the class (e.g., uses notes and outlines; uses organizational pattern that includes preview, introduction, body, transitions, conclusion; uses a clear point of view; uses evidence and arguments to support opinions; uses visual media)
   7. Uses appropriate verbal and nonverbal techniques for oral presentations (e.g., inflection/modulation of voice, tempo, word choice, grammar, feeling, expression, tone, volume, enunciation, physical gestures, body movement, eye contact, posture)
   8. Evaluates strategies used by speakers in oral presentations (e.g., persuasive techniques, verbal messages supported by nonverbal techniques, effect of word choice, use of slanted or biased material)
   9. Understands the ways in which language differs across a variety of social situations (e.g., formal and informal speech in different social situations, use of jargon by sports commentators to make listeners feel like insiders)
   10. Understands elements of persuasion and appeal in spoken texts (e.g., purpose and impact of pace, volume, tone, stress, music; images and ideas conveyed by vocabulary)
   11. Understands speaker’s use of logic and evidence in verbal arguments (e.g., logical or faulty reasoning, logical fallacies, degree and quality of support for claims)
  Level IV (Grade 9-12)
   1. Uses criteria to evaluate own and others’ effectiveness in group discussions and formal presentations (e.g., accuracy, relevance, and organization of information; clarity of delivery; relationships among purpose, audience, and content; types of arguments used; effectiveness of own contributions)
   2. Asks questions as a way to broaden and enrich classroom discussions
   3. Uses a variety of strategies to enhance listening comprehension (e.g., focuses attention on message, monitors message for clarity and understanding, asks relevant questions, provides verbal and nonverbal feedback,notes cues such as change of pace or particular words that indicate a new point is about to be made; uses abbreviation system to record information quickly; selects and organizes essential information; summarizes points of agreement and disagreement in discussion)
   4. Adjusts message wording and delivery to particular audiences (e.g., uses standard English for formal audiences) and for particular purposes (e.g., to defend a position, to entertain, to inform, to persuade)
   5. Makes formal presentations to the class (e.g., includes definitions for clarity; supports main ideas using anecdotes, examples, statistics, analogies, and other evidence; uses visual aids or technology, such as transparencies, slides, electronic media; cites information sources)
   6. Makes multimedia presentations using text, images, and sound (e.g., selects the appropriate medium, such as television broadcast, videos, web pages, films, newspapers, magazines, CD-ROMS, Internet, computer-media-generated images ; edits and monitors for quality; organizes, writes, and designs media messages for specific purposes)
   7. Uses a variety of verbal and nonverbal techniques for presentations (e.g., modulation of voice; varied inflection; tempo; enunciation; physical gestures; rhetorical questions; word choice, including figurative language, informal usage, technical language) and demonstrates poise and self-control while presenting
   8. Responds to questions and feedback about contributions to discussions and formal presentations (e.g., clarifies and defends ideas, expands on a topic, uses logical arguments, modifies organization, sets goals for future presentations)
   9. Understands influences on language use (e.g., political beliefs, positions of social power, culture)
   10. Understands how style and content of spoken language varies in different contexts (e.g., style of different radio news programs, everyday language compared to language in television soap operas, tones of news bulletins on "serious" and youth-oriented stations) and how this influences interpretation of these texts