Vertical Differentiation QUICK Guide
Vertical Differentiation QUICK Guide

5th ELA Leveled Google Forms for Assessment

“This resource has helped my online students understand their learning expectations. They have started using the proficiency scales with pictures and they are recognizing what they need to do to progress upward on the scale. This was a huge time saver for me and helped my students better understand what a power standard is.” – August 31, 2020

6th Grade ELA Posters with Learning Goals and Scales - EDITABLE

8th Grade Math Bundle with Proficiency Scales

4th Grade Math Assessment with Learning Goals & Scales

“These scaled assessments are great! I love that the questions show a progression of skills so I can see where students may be struggling, and it also gives the kids the opportunity to see that they can do something, even if they’re not quite “on level” yet. Thanks.” – Robert R.
December 1, 2018

5th Grade ELA Posters with Learning Goals and Scales

“Saving my sanity every week!” – Miss Beasley’s Bookworms (TPT Seller)
November 26, 2018

2nd Grade Math Assessment with Marzano Scales

“THIS HAS BEEN A LIFESAVER! Thanks for offering exactly what I was looking for. I was already to make it and wha-la there it is. Perfect! Thank you for your hard work. I appreciate it so much. I am a follower now!” – Beth Marlatt
November 30, 2018

5th Grade ELA Assessment Reading Literature RL with Proficiency Scales

“I am so grateful for this resource! It makes transitioning to standards based grading so much easier!! Thank you for your incredibly hard work!” – Katt F. November 26, 2018

3rd Grade Math Bilingual Proficiency Scales - English & Spanish

This is a perfect resource for my dual language classroom, especially since my students can rate themselves as we work through each skill.”  Socorro F. December 2, 2018

Meet Melanie LiCausi

Melanie is the original creator of Leveled Assessments for Math and ELA.  Leveled Assessments take Marzano’s research to a whole new LEVEL, by adding clear and objective tasks to proficiency scales. Melanie’s experience with differentiation comes from twelve years in the classroom teaching first grade, second grade, middle school math, and several years of Gifted Resource in a multi-age classroom for grades 3-5.  She has mastered the art of aligning content at multiple grade levels to give students a smooth and defined path for progress. 

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As Proficiency Scales become the NEW way to teach, more and more schools are looking for resources from experienced teachers. Melanie has written, taught and presented proficiency scales at multiple conferences to walk teachers through the process of creating, presenting, organizing, and assessing learning objectives with scales. FOLLOW THE LINK above to recieve a free GUIDE to SCALES sharing my own experience and tips.

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Mrs. L’s Blog

Proficiency Scales Simplify Differentiation in Elementary Classrooms

Proficiency Scales Simplify Differentiation in Elementary Classrooms

What are your beliefs about differentiation?
When you look at the diversity in your classroom, does it seem possible to reach every student? What if differentiation was just based on a naturally logical path of learning?
Start with background knowledge and end with opportunities for in-depth application.
I like to call this vertical differentiation. This means that students are working on the same topic or standard, at different levels of cognitive difficulty. If you are familiar with Blooms or Marzano Taxonomy of Higher Order Thinking skills, then you already have an idea of vertical differentiation.

Assessment that Saves Classroom Time

Assessment that Saves Classroom Time

Do you feel like WAY too much of your classroom time is spent completing standardized assessments? What if it were possible to develop an assessment that saves classroom time instead? Seriously! Read on to see the simple two-page leveled assessments that I’ve used to...

Ultimate Growth Mindset Tool for Standards Based Grading

Ultimate Growth Mindset Tool for Standards Based Grading

Standards Based Grading is the Ultimate Growth Mindset Tool! A simple shift in focus. Students track mastery in the standards, instead of earning points toward a subject grade. Students are assessed according to their level of PROFICIENCY. Standards Based Grading can be more helpful in targeting student strengths and weaknesses. Teachers are able to plan more specifically, i.e. “DIFFERENTIATE”, to support students level of understanding. It gives teachers the feedback they need to modify instruction. It also tells students exactly what to work on next!

Rubrics verses Proficiency Scales

Rubrics verses Proficiency Scales

s the difference between a Rubric and a Proficiency Scale? In the examples below I’m going to share with you how each classroom tool can vary in structure and purpose. A rubric can look like a four-point scale with one crucial difference; a proficiency scale is focused on one learning objective. A rubric often includes a variety of skills that are related to different standards. Let’s look at some examples for elementary and middle school language arts and writing!

Fun Non-Fiction Writing Activity with Holiday Recipes!

Fun Non-Fiction Writing Activity with Holiday Recipes!

Do you struggle to get your students into nonfiction writing? Recipes are one of those informational forms that is very specific and easy to imitate. Your students will get to explore the importance of descriptive titles, step by step instructions, appealing images, and accurate descriptions. I even include 4 sets of directions for differentiating the activity to the levels of a proficiency scale. This Holiday Recipe writing activity is one of my favorites because it is FUN and relies directly to the writing nonfiction standards. Read on to get a link to a free Holiday Writing Activity Template with ready to print directions! No Prep Required!!

Distance Learning and the Homeschool Connection

Distance Learning and the Homeschool Connection

Have you figured out what to work on with your child at home?

My name is Melanie LiCausi, and I am a mom of three, a classroom teacher, and trying out home-schooling for the very first time!

Having the unique experience of being on both sides of online learning has given me the chance to notice a few things.
Read on to see the simplest way to communicate your standards to students and parents in 4 easy steps!

Valentine’s Day Origami Projects

Valentine’s Day Origami Projects

Kids LOVE origami, at least my students always have. In an effort to get kids working together as a team, here is a fun way to assign groups and 'solidify' partnerships using one simple origami fold. Students can leave their group piece in a special place to indicate...

Ideas for Celebrating Student Success

Ideas for Celebrating Student Success

If you’re teaching and being evaluated under the Marzano platform, you may be feeling overwhelmed about everything that’s expected of you, especially since you want to do well on your evaluation, right? Don’t worry, help is STILL on the way…yes, this is the THIRD in a...

Black History Month Biography Research Project

Black History Month Biography Research Project

Some kids have a clear idea of what kind of future they're working towards, and others may not have any good ideas, or any good examples of happy and successful adults in their lives. Helping kids connect with and claim a Hero can define their vision for the future...


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