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Literacy in the Wachusett Regional Schools

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  1. Literacy in the Wachusett Regional Schools

  2. Key Features of the Literacy Program • Balanced literacy • Teachers as learners • Instruction is what matters most • Assessment drives instruction

  3. What Is Balanced Literacy? • Balanced Literacy • Balance of explicit teaching of skills and literature-based instruction • Fosters a love for reading • Emphasizes the following: • Phonics and phonemic awareness • Fluency • Vocabulary • Comprehension • Writing • Explicit strategy instruction • Engagement and motivation • “Real” books and “real” writing

  4. What Is Strategy Instruction in the WRSD? • Explicit modeling by the teacher • Independent and guided practice for students • Daily conferring and small-group instruction • Focus on key strategies that transcend many types of texts and purposes

  5. What Are the Key Comprehension Strategies? • Retell • Make connections • Create sensory images • Ask questions • Infer • Determine importance • Summarize • Synthesize

  6. What Is Readers’ Workshop? • 15 minute focus lesson • 30-45 minutes of independent reading (5-15 in K) • 1:1 conferring and small-group instruction during independent reading time • 5 minute group share • RW occurs daily and is uninterrupted

  7. What Is Writers’ Workshop? • 15 minute focus lesson • 30-45 minutes of independent writing (5-15 in K) • 1:1 conferring during independent writing time • 5 minute group share • WW occurs daily and is uninterrupted

  8. What Other Literacy Experiences Occur on a Daily Basis? • 15-30 minutes of phonics instruction • 15 minutes of interactive read-aloud • 15-30 minutes of Tier II intervention

  9. What Materials are Available to Support Literacy Instruction? • Classroom libraries • 375+ titles • Fiction, nonfiction, favorites, award winners • Common texts across grade levels • Fundations phonics, spelling, and handwriting • School bookroom • 900 titles • Six-pack of each title for small-group work

  10. What Does Assessment Look Like in the WRSD? • AIMSweb fluency measures (3x per year, grades K-4) • DRA2 (K-5) • Fundations assessments • Wachusett Reading Benchmarks (January and May, K-5)

  11. How Do We Use Assessments? • Assessment data is used to: • Plan instruction for individuals and small and large groups • Create flexible strategy or guided reading groups • Identify students in need of intervention

  12. How Do We Support Struggling Readers in the WRSD? • Response to Intervention (RTI) • Three-tier approach to intervention • Tier I→ Balanced Literacy (high quality, differentiated instruction for all students) • Tier II → Second dose of 15-30 minutes targeted intervention for Tier I non-responders • Tier III → Third dose of intense intervention distinct from Tiers I and II, facilitated by a service provider

  13. Who will help you? • Literacy coaches • Tufts partners • Principals and Assistant Principals • Curriculum Supervisors

  14. Current WRSD Literacy Assessments • AIMSweb • WRSD Sight Word Lists • Fundations Assessments • DRA2 • WRSD Reading Benchmark Conferences • MCAS

  15. Sight Words

  16. Sight Words • Students should be able to recognize these words in less than a second. • We want students to read these words quickly in text so that they are able to retain what is happening in a story rather than focus on their decoding of words.

  17. WRSD Sight Word Lists • There are lists for grades K-3. • 2 lists of words for Kindergarten • List 1 – Pre-primer words from the Dolch list • List 2 – Primer words from the Dolch list • All students in grades K-3 are assessed • Obtain a baseline number of sight words for each student in the beginning of the year to plan an instructional sequence for each student. • Some students may demonstrate mastery of sight word list during the baseline assessment.

  18. WRSD Sight Words (cont.) • The administration dates for this assessment may vary. You may want to consider conducting the assessment during each marking period. • There is a report card line item for grades K-3 that says “reads grade level sight words” so this information will be conveyed to parents. • Proficiency targets • 90% recall of word lists taught to date for Kindergarten • 95% recall of word lists taught to date for grades 1-3 • The assessment is only based on a student’s reading of sight words. Spelling is not a part of this assessment.

  19. Teaching Sight Words • Sight word instruction is differentiated for each student. • Instruction can occur • During whole class Fundations or Readers’ Workshop • In small groups • At literacy centers • During conferring

  20. A Note About Fundations • Fundations provides its own list of sight words that align with its phonics program. • There is some overlap of words listed in Fundations and the Dolch list. • For grades 1-3 there are two sight words assessments given. • The Dolch List • The Fundations List

  21. Conferring Writers’ Workshop & Readers’ Workshop

  22. What Is an Independent Reading/Writing Conference? • Teacher works 1:1 with a student • The teacher assesses (researches) what the student needs to learn, decides what to teach, and then teaches. • Some people think of an independent reading/writing conference as a “private lesson.”

  23. Dual Role of Reading Conferences Teach Reading Skills and Strategies • Teach the reader, not the text Support Curriculum • Coach student to apply the strategy taught in a focus lesson

  24. What is essential? • Conversational tone • Consistency • Motivation - develop identity as a reader • Research, Decide, Teach (RDT,R) and record • Teach the reader, not the book

  25. Conference Goals for the Teacher • To coach the student to think actively • To assess what the student knows and needs to learn • To teach the reader • To motivate the student to read more and to apply the strategies taught

  26. Four Part Conference Structure • Research • What does the student know? • What does the student need to learn? • Decide • Select 1-2 things the student is ready to learn next. • Teach • Explain and model the strategy • Record • Record what you taught and expect student to practice for follow-up at next conference.

  27. Research, Decide, Teachand record

  28. Research, Decide, Teach and Record

  29. Domains for Conferring • Decoding • Comprehension • Fluency • Motivation

  30. Viewing Early Reader Conferences • Watch Debbie Miller confer with her grade one students. • Analyze video for RDT and R

  31. Starting a book. • What does the student know about himself or herself as a reader? • Tell me how you chose this book. • Have you read any other books by this author, series? • How do you know this is a “just right” book? • What kinds of books do you like to read? • What do you do before you read a book?

  32. Middle of a book. • Is the student actively engaged and applying strategies as needed? Is the student monitoring for meaning? • Read a bit of the story to me. • Do a quick running record to analyze strategy use. • How did you get back into the story from yesterday? • What is happening in the story so far? • What do you think might happen next? • Tell me about the characters. Have they changed? • Was there a part of the story that was confusing? What did you do to help yourself as a reader?

  33. End of the book. • Is the student thinking beyond the text? • What do you think about the story? • What was your favorite part? Why? • Did you make any connections to the story? • What did you learn about yourself as a reader • Retell what happened in the story. • What strategies did you use as a reader? • What will you read next? • What goals do you have for yourself as a reader?

  34. Conference Notes • User friendly. • Not unnecessarily complicated. • Record and reflect over time. • Keep track of who to confer with. • Access for support staff who also confer with your students. • Space to record information you need.

  35. Sharon Taberski’s Notes

  36. Debbie Miller’s Notes

  37. Viewing Transitional Conferences • Watch Sharon Taberski confer with her grade two students. • Analyze video and transcripts for RDT,R

  38. Conferring Tips…

  39. #1. Talk about what you see the student doing at the moment. • I see you are laughing. What’s so funny? • I see you have lots of sticky notes in your book. What are you writing? • I see you’re reading the back of the book. Tell me about that--what kind of information does it give you? • I see you have selected many nonfiction text. What do you like about nonfiction?

  40. #2. Talk about what you worked on last conference. • Last time we met, we talked about finding “just right” books. Share with me the books you selected. How do you know they are “just right?” • Last time we met, we worked on reading fluently and paying attention to the punctuation marks. Read this part aloud so I can hear how you’re doing… • Last time we worked on what you can do when you come to a word you don’t know. What can you do to figure out that word?

  41. #3. Talk about that day’s focus lesson topic or the current unit of study. • In the focus lesson we practiced creating sensory images. Show me a place in the book where you could create a strong image. • We are learning about nonfiction. How do you read this page? What part do you read first? • We have been practicing retelling. Retell what you have read so far in the book.

  42. #4. Ask one or more open-ended questions. • How’s your reading going? • Tell me about this book…what’s it about? What’s happening so far in the story? • Tell me about the character in the story? • Why did you select this book? • Can I help you with anything in your reading?

  43. #5. Try an over-the-shoulder read. I want you to silently read the rest of this page, and I’m going to sit here beside you and read it silently to myself. When you’re done, let’s talk about what you’re thinking. • Things to Notice • Silent Reading Rate—How long does it take for the student to finish reading that section silently? • Comprehension—Does the student understand the selection? What strategies does the student use? • Oral Reading (optional)--# of errors, fluency & phrasing

  44. The Developmental Reading Assessment

  45. What is the Developmental Reading Assessment? • The DRA2 is an assessment tool commonly used to measure student performance in the following areas of reading proficiency. • Reading engagement • Oral reading fluency • Comprehension / Printed Language Concepts • It provides information to identify students’ independent reading levels and next steps to take to help students improve their reading skills.

  46. Components of the DRA2 • Your kit includes: • Teacher’s Guide • Blackline Masters and Blackline Master CD • Benchmark Assessment Books • Assessment Procedures Overview Card • DRA2 Clipboard with timer • Training DVD • Word Analysis Resources

  47. WRSD DRA2 Administration Dates • Kindergarten: • Rolling Administration from late fall - 4/2/10 • Grades 1-5: • Fall By 11/24/2009 Gr. 1-5: All students • Spring By 4/16/2010 Gr. 1-2: All students Gr. 3: Students below level 30 in fall Gr. 4: Students below level 40 in fall Gr. 5: Students below level 50 in fall

  48. Administration Suggestions • Remain organized. • Get help with photocopying. • Make a schedule and stick to it. • Conduct 1-2 assessments per day. • Ask your literacy coach to model a DRA. • Determine which students you wish to assess first. • Have more than one student working on DRA at a time. • Score the assessment (especially ORF) as soon as possible. • Complete the Focus For Instruction form.

  49. WRSD DRA2 Benchmarks (K-3): • Kindergarten: Fall - Level A Spring – Level 2 *ceiling level for DRA testing: Level 16 • Grade 1: Fall – Level 6 Spring – Level 16 *ceiling level for DRA testing: Level 28 • Grade 2: Fall – Level 20 Spring – Level 28 *ceiling level for DRA testing: Level 38 • Grade 3: Fall – Level 30 Spring – Level 38 *ceiling level for DRA testing: Level 40

  50. WRSD DRA2 Benchmarks (4-5): • Grade 4: Fall – Level 40 Spring – Level 40 *ceiling level for DRA testing: Level 50 • Grade 5: Fall – Level 50 Spring – Level 50 *ceiling level for DRA testing: Level 60