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Disciplinary Literacy. AGENDA. Overview of the Common Core State Standards for English Language Arts & Literacy in History/Social Studies, Science, and Technical Subjects Role of content teacher in literacy practices Examining classroom practices

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Disciplinary Literacy

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Presentation Transcript
  • Overview of the Common Core State Standards for English Language Arts & Literacy in History/Social Studies, Science, and Technical Subjects
  • Role of content teacher in literacy practices
  • Examining classroom practices
  • Question and answer opportunities with ADE Panel
big shifts
Big Shifts
  • Appropriate Text Complexity
  • Increased Reading of Informational Texts
  • Disciplinary Literacy
  • Close Reading
  • Text-dependent Questions
  • General Academic and Domain-specific Vocabulary
  • Argumentative Writing
  • Short and Sustained Research Projects


why do we need literacy standards for history social studies science and technical subjects
Why do we need literacy standards forHistory/ Social Studies, Science, and Technical Subjects?

8th Grade: Only one third were able to perform at a proficient level involving more sophisticated disciplinary comprehension expectations. Only 3% scored advanced.

12th Grade: Only 5% scored at advanced levels, able to read specialized and complex texts.

NAEP, 2009

international studies
International Studies
  • 4th grade U.S. students performed among the best in the world
  • 8th grade U.S. students performed considerably lower
  • 10th grade U.S. students ranked among the lowest of the nations studied

Carnegie Council on Advancing Adolescent Literacy, 2010


“Only 51 percent of 2005 ACT-tested high school graduates are ready for college-level reading – and , what’s worse, more students are on track to being ready for college-level reading in eighth and tenth grade than are actually ready by the time they reach twelfth grade.”

American College Testing Program, 2006

college readiness
College Readiness
  • Almost half of the 3 million people in the United States who start their first year of college will drop out before they earn their degree, and 30% will drop out after their first year.
  • At the community college level, out of 6 million students, 1 million will take remedial courses.
  • Students who take remedial courses are highly likely to drop out.
  • Inadequate preparation is repeatedly cited as a central factor in the disappointing college success rates.

The College Completion Agenda: 2010 Progress Report, Lee & Rawls, 2010


The reading level of documents, technical manuals, and other materials required by entry level positions in most fields far exceed the reading level of many students.

Meeting the Challenge of Adolescent Literacy, Judith Irvin, et al


“All courses in high school, not just English and social studies but mathematics and science as well, must challenge students to read and understand complex texts.”

American College Testing Program (2006)


Common Core

State Standards for


English Language Arts


Literacy in History/Social Studies,

Science, and Technical Subjects

shared responsibility
Shared Responsibility

“The Standards insist that instruction in reading, writing, speaking, listening, and language be a shared responsibility within the school.”

CCSS, page 4


“…ultimately, our students are expected to develop as competent readers, writers, and thinkers in all academic disciplines.”

Developing Readers in the Academic Disciplines, Doug Buehl

students who are college and career ready ccr
Students Who are College and Career Ready (CCR):
  • Demonstrate independence.
  • Build strong content knowledge.
  • Respond to the varying demands of audience, task, purpose, and discipline.
  • Comprehend as well as critique.
  • Value evidence.
  • Use technology and digital media strategically and capably.
  • Come to understand other perspectives and cultures.

CCSS, page 7

demonstrate independence
Demonstrate Independence
  • Comprehend and evaluate complex texts
  • Construct effective arguments
  • Convey intricate or multifaceted information
  • Discern a speaker’s key points, request clarification, and ask relevant questions become self-directed learners
build strong content knowledge
Build Strong Content Knowledge
  • Across a wide range of subject matter
  • Engage with works of quality and substance
  • Learn through research and study
  • Read purposefully to gain discipline-specific expertise
  • Refine and share their knowledge through writing and speaking
respond to varying demands
Respond to Varying Demands
  • Adapt their communication in relation to audience, task, purpose, and discipline
  • Know the different disciplines call for different types of evidence
comprehend as well as critique
Comprehend as Well as Critique
  • Engaged, open-minded, and discerning readers and listeners
  • Understand what the author is saying
  • Question the author’s assumptions and premises
  • Assess the veracity of claims
  • Assess the soundness of reasoning
value evidence
Value Evidence
  • Cite specific evidence
  • Use relevant evidence
  • Exhibit clear reasoning
  • Constructively evaluate others’ use of evidence
use technology and digital media
Use Technology and Digital Media
  • Employ technology thoughtfully
  • Search online to acquire useful information
  • Integrate online sources with other information
  • Select tools best suited for their goals
understand other perspectives and cultures
Understand Other Perspectives and Cultures
  • Actively seek to understand other perspectives and cultures
  • Communicate effectively with people of varied backgrounds
  • Evaluate other points of views critically and constructively
k 5 informative explanatory reading and writing
K-5 Informative/Explanatory Reading And Writing
  • Build wide background in content areas
  • Read closely
  • Answer text explicit questions and make inferences
  • Read complex texts
  • Write opinions and informative/explanatory pieces
  • 50% of the text read should be nonfiction.
the balance of information and literacy texts in k 5
The Balance of Information and Literacy Texts in K-5


literacy development
Literacy Development

Shanahan and Shanahan (2008)

comprehension strategies all good readers use
Comprehension Strategies All Good Readers Use


  • Review vocabulary
  • Make predictions
  • Review text features
comprehension strategies all good readers use25
Comprehension Strategies All Good Readers Use

While reading

  • Monitor for understanding; rereading if needed
  • Draw a visual representation of the unfolding argument
  • Asking questions about the main ideas as they unfold
  • Make note of unfamiliar words, concepts, ideas to research later
comprehension strategies all good readers use26
Comprehension Strategies All Good Readers Use

After reading

  • Summarizing and restating the text’s main points
  • Comparing notes with other students
  • Discussion
literacy development27
Literacy Development

Shanahan and Shanahan (2008)

parcc model content frameworks the bridge between ccss and parcc assessments
PARCC Model Content Frameworks“The bridge between CCSS and PARCC Assessments”
  • Support implementation of the Common Core State Standards
  • Inform the development of item specifications and blueprints for assessments in grades 3-8 and high school
  • http://www.parcconline.org

“Asking a teacher to become a reading teacher is distinctly different from asking a teacher to help students master texts within the teacher’s own field. In fact, subject-area teachers are best qualified to help their students master texts in each course. Subject-area teachers should not be expected to teach basic reading skills, but they can help students develop critical strategies and skills for reading texts in each subject.”

Southern Regional Education Board, 2009 Policy Statement, page 5


“To become competent in a number of academic content areas requires more than just applying the same old skills and comprehension strategies to new kinds of texts. It also requires skills and knowledge and reasoning processes that are specific to particular disciplines. “

Literacy Instruction in the Content Areas, Heller and Greenleaf (2007)

norms and conventions of history reading
Norms and Conventions of History Reading
  • History is interpretative, and authors and sourcing are central in interpretation (consideration of bias and perspective)
  • Often seems narrative without purpose and argument without explicit claims (need to see history as argument based on partial evidence; narratives are more than facts)
  • Single texts are problematic (no corroboration)
norms and conventions of science reading
Norms and Conventions of Science Reading
  • Text provides knowledge that allows prediction of how the world works
  • Full understanding needed of experiments or processes
  • Close connections among prose, graphs, charts, formulas (alternative representations of constructs an essential aspect of chemistry text)
  • Major reading strategies include corroboration and transformation
norms and conventions of math reading
Norms and Conventions of Math Reading
  • Goal: arrive at “truth”
  • Importance of “close reading” an intensive consideration of every word in the text
  • Rereading a major strategy
  • Heavy emphasis on error detection
  • Precision of understanding essential information
disciplinary reading range and content
Disciplinary Reading Range and Content
  • Is critical to building knowledge in content areas
  • Requires an appreciation of the norms and conventions of each discipline
  • Necessitates an understanding of domain-specific words and phrases
  • Calls for an attention to precise details
  • Demands the capacity to evaluate intricate arguments, synthesize complex information , and follow detailed descriptions of events and concepts
grade span specific standards
Grade Span Specific Standards
  • Reading History/Social Studies (RH) page 61
  • Reading Science and Technical Subjects

( RST) page 62

disciplinary writing range and content
Disciplinary Writing Range and Content
  • Key means of asserting and defending claims and showing what is known
  • Considers audience, task, and purpose
  • Uses technology strategically
  • Emphasizes writing arguments and informative/explanatory pieces
grade span specific standards38
Grade Span Specific Standards
  • Writing History/Social Studies, Science and Technical Subjects

( WHST) pages 64-66

*note that narrative writing is not applicable as a separate requirement

literacy in other disciplines
Literacy in Other Disciplines


what can instructional leaders do to support content teachers
What can instructional leaders do to support content teachers?

• Be sure that content teachers have a clear and consistent message about

their roles and responsibilities as they relate to literacy instruction (Heller

& Greenleaf, 2007);

• Give teachers initial and ongoing professional development in vocabulary

and comprehension support (Deshler et al., 2001; Jacobs, 2008);

• Help teachers in adapting literacy strategies to meet the unique needs of

their content areas (Reed, 2008; Siebert & Draper, 2008);

• Give content teachers incentives and appropriate tools, for incorporating

reading and writing instruction (Bryant, Linan-Thompson, Ugel, Hamff, &

Hougen, 2001; Heller & Greenleaf, 2007) .

Alliance for Excellent Education

2011 2012 disciplinary literacy professional learning opportunities
2011-2012 Disciplinary Literacy Professional Learning Opportunities


  • 6-8  Implementing CCSS in Science
  • 6-8 Argument
  • 9-12  Implementing CCSS in Science
  • 9-12 Argument

History/Social Studies:

  • 6-8    Argument
  • 6-8    CCSS – Reading through a Historian Lens
  • 9-12 Argument
  • 9-12  CCSS – Reading through a Historian Lens
  • Common Core State Standards for English Language Arts and Literacy in History,/Social Studies, Science, and Technical Subjects, http://corestandards.org/assets/CCSSI_ELA%20Standards.pdf
  • Common Core State Standards for English Language Arts and Literacy in History,/Social Studies, Science, and Technical Subjects, Appendix A, http://corestandards.org/assets/Appendix_A.pdf
  • Publishers’ Criteria for English Language Arts and Literacy, Grades K-2, http://www.corestandards.org/assets/Publishers_Criteria_for_K-2.pdf
  • Publishers’ Criteria for English Language Arts and Literacy, Grades 3-12, http://www.corestandards.org/assets/Publishers_Criteria_for_3-12.pdf
  • PARCC Model Content Frameworks for English Language Arts/Literacy, Grades 3-11,http://www.parcconline.org/sites/parcc/files/PARCC%20MCF%20for%20ELA%20Literacy_Fall%202011%20Release%20%28rev%29.pdf