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Integrating Literacy Rich Strategies to Reach All Learners. Zahra Bijarkhan, Heather Mulling, Katie Nunn, and Grace Tegga EDUC 4800 Action Research Project Georgia Gwinnet College School of Education Fall 2012. Introduction.

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integrating literacy rich strategies to reach all learners

Integrating Literacy Rich Strategies to Reach All Learners

Zahra Bijarkhan, Heather Mulling, Katie Nunn, and Grace Tegga

EDUC 4800

Action Research Project

Georgia Gwinnet College

School of Education

Fall 2012

  • Need: to provide ELL/ESOL, Special Ed, Gifted, and General learners the opportunity to progress through scaffolding activities
  • Causes: follow up from researching the 2012-2013 LSPI goals of Ferguson, Mason, Simonton, and Winn Holt Elementary Schools
  • Solution: best practice activities of using vocabulary cards, centers, reader’s theatre, and along with applied graphic organizers in content areas
school improvement plans ferguson mason simonton and winn holt
School Improvement Plans: Ferguson, Mason, Simonton, and Winn Holt
  • Analysis of School Improvement Plan: Individually, we circled the goals from our school’s plan. Then we had a meeting to determine the goals each school had in common.
  • Topic Selection: In the LSPI plans, meeting or exceeding in literacy was important. The only way to achieve this is to have all students improve.
  • Benefit:Teachers need to be open and willing to try new strategies that will benefit the students. Using graphic organizers is a best practice to scaffold learning that will enable students to collect, organize, and store information. Using activities such as centers, reader’s theatre, vocabulary graphic organizers, and modeling gives students the opportunity to scaffold information visually, auditorily, and kinesthetically.
description of action plan
Description of Action Plan
  • Analysis of School Improvement Plans
  • Literacy Breakdown: Balanced Literacy, Differentiated Instruction, Problem Solving, and Technical Literacy
  • Researched
  • Picked best strategies and compiled a theme
  • Displayed graphic organizers for content areas
relevant literature3
Relevant Literature

“Best Practices in Writing Instruction”

This resource provides clear-cut strategies for improving K-12 writing instruction.

Proven ways are demonstrated to teach different aspects of writing, including planning,

revision, and using the internet as part of instruction for all learners. This tool helped in

my research by offering best-practice guidelines for designing an effective writing program.

Graham, Steve. (2007). “Best Practices in Writing Instruction” (Volume 1) Guilford

Press. Retrieved October 28, 2012 from: Best Practices in Writing Instruction,book

relevant literature4
Relevant Literature

“Reading and Writing to Learn: Strategies Across the Curriculum”

This resource helped in my research by offering and providing numerous activities for

reading, writing, affective, cooperative, and best practices for all content areas,

emphasizing on writing and literacy. The lessons are geared to accommodate different

learning styles, a range of reading abilities, and various levels of motivation.

Kuta, Katherine Wiesolek (2008). “Reading and Writing to Learn: Strategies Across the

Curriculum.” Libraries Unlimited/Teacher Ideas Press. Retreived October 25, 2012

from: Reading and Writing to Learn: Strategies Across the Curriculum, book.

relevant literature5
Relevant Literature

“Best Practices for Literacy Instruction”

This resource helped in my research by providing strategies for helping all students

succeed—including struggling readers and English Language Learners—and for

teaching each of the major components of literacy. It also addresses ways to organize

instruction and innovative uses of technology. Every chapter includes concrete

examples, engagement activities, and resources for further learning.

Gambrell, Linda B. (2011). “Best Practices for Literacy Instruction, Fourth Edition.”

Guilford Press. Retrieved October 15, 2012 from: Best Practices for

Literacy Instruction, book.

relevant literature6
Relevant Literature

“What Does a Balanced Literacy Approach Mean?”

This article discusses using two different approaches and balancing them to teach students

how to read. Whole language approach teaches students to read through authentic

connections through texts and without explicit instruction. Phonics approach teaches

students with explicit instruction and rules of text by the way they are written and spelled.

Wren, S. (2003). What does a "balanced approach" Retrieved from http://www.hershey.


relevant literature7
Relevant Literature

“A Balanced Literacy Initiative for One Suburban School District in the United States”

This article discusses the research of the use of balanced literacy across the United

States and the several variations in the results of effectiveness due to different factors

such as classroom management, teacher decision, social, historical, economic,

psychological, philosophical, demographic, and political factors.

Shaw, D. & Hurst, K. (2012). A balanced literacy initiative for one suburban school district

in the united states. Retrieved from


relevant literature8
Relevant Literature

“Balanced instruction: Insights and Considerations”

This article discusses the uses of balanced instruction and the different strategies to teach it by using explicit and non-explicit instruction through whole language and phonics.

Freppon, P. & Dahl, K. (1998). Balanced instruction: Insights and. 33(2), 240-251. Retrieved from Literacy Instruction/Research Base for BL Instruction/RRQ- Balanced Literacy Instruction-Freppon.pdf

relevant literature9
Relevant Literature

GLISI (Georgia Leadership Institute for School Improvement) Module Graphic Organizers

  • This module informs the reader of the purpose of using graphic organizers for students to collect, organize, and store information. It shows the website of . That website has a collection of graphic organizers that goes beyond the traditional everyday organizer and can be suited for all learners.
relevant literature10
Relevant Literature

"Tech Tally: Approaches to Assessing Technological Literacy”

This article has a key point: in order for elementary school students to be literate in technology the teachers must be literate in technology. The authors’ state technology in the United States is still in the “infancy” period. The last portion that I reflected and understood from this book was that by the time we create and implement a perfect assessment to monitor the students and teachers that technology might be gone and another whole new concept of technology might be walking in!

E. Garmire, Greg Pearson, national Academy of Engineering. Committee on Assessing Technological Literacy Tech Tally: Approaches to Assessing Technological Literacy Island Press, Dec 1, 2006 - 358 pages

relevant literature11
Relevant Literature
  • “The Effect of Principals ‘Technological Leadership on Teachers’ Technological Literacy and Teaching Effectiveness in Taiwanese Elementary”The article states that the principal should have experience in: 1) vision, planning, and management (direction and trends of technology) 2) staff development and training (newest resources for teachers) 3) technological and infrastructure support (skilled technology support to help the teachers) 4) evaluation and research (have procedures to measure growth) and 5)interpersonal and communication skills (proper communication skills are more important than technological skills) . (Chang, 2012) It states that the teacher must know his/her planning and organization abilities before trying to achieve a goal.At the same time there is efficiency and effects the teachers’: preparation, skills, classroom, assessment, and beliefs.
  • Chang, I-Hua, Journal of Educational Technology & Society. The Effect of Principals ‘Technological Leadership on Teachers’ Technological Literacy and Teaching Effectiveness in Taiwanese Elementary. Apr 2012, Vol. 15 Issue 2, pp. 328- 340. 13p.
relevant literature12
Relevant Literature
  • “21st Century Skills: Will Our Students Be Prepared?”
  • The article shows how all students can be technical literate by focusing on six key areas: core subjects, learning skills, using tools (technology), context, content, and new assessments. Learning skills suggests that students need to know how to use their skills and knowledge with critical thinking, analyzing information, communicating, collaborating, making decisions, and solving problems. Assessments have to remain constant and challenging year after year. It should go beyond standardized testing and be more like balanced traditional test with classroom tests to measure the range of skills. Also, it states to give immediate feedback back from taking tests over the computer. Having the technical literacy skill enables preparing students for a knowledge-based economy.
  • Salpeter, J., 21st Century Skills: Will Our Students Be Prepared? 10/15/2003 By: Judy Salpeter be- prepared/45157
presentation of findings artifacts
Presentation of Findings/Artifacts

What did you find out as a result of research?

  • The research proved that innovative resources are available to provide a rich literacy experience that all students can benefit from.

What did you choose to display and why?

  • We focused on the fairytale genre in order to provide a rich cultural and literacy experience with basic, everyday activities that support it. Also, we added graphic organizers that can be adapted to enhance the learning experience. Teachers can reflect on their own instructional strategies. Then they can decide which of the methods that cover a variety of levels would help their students improve.
feedback and conclusions
Feedback and Conclusions
  • Reflection from the feedback forms:
we learned these lessons
We Learned THESE Lessons

Lessons Learned:

  • With an extensive project like this it’s very hard to compile all the written work from all the members. Also, with everyone doing a separate section, some of the colleagues wondered how the outcome of the project will turn out. Being patient and dependable and having confidence in your colleagues helps the project come together. Finally, what we had imagined the capstone would look like, took a more fantastic turn by the end.

Meaning to Us as Educators:

  • This project definitely developed us as professional teacher leaders by showing us how collaboration and reliability on others plays a meaningful part on any result satisfying or not.

Things We Would Do Differently Next Time:

  • We would have came up with a simplified name to give more room on our trifold board. Also, we would have had more outside meetings to put it all together.
executive summary
Executive Summary
  • Need Identified: Improve technical literacy and problem-solving skills. Increase academic performance in differentiated and guided instruction.
  • Artifacts Developed: Trifold board with best practice activities, graphic organizers in a binder to implement with additional research, and a binder with the PowerPoint
  • Feedback: (Summarize the reactions of other Educators)
  • End Result / Impact: (Explain the impact or result of the work done)
credit appreciation thanks
Credit; Appreciation; Thanks
  • Please see the trifold that has all the accreditations from Ferguson, Mason, Simonton, and Winn Holt Elementary School.
  • Special appreciation in regards to GGC faculty: Professor Pfeiffer for her leadership and Doctor Tiedemann for everything we explored about in literacy, language, and culture.