Reading Comprehension Strategies
Spelling & Word Study
Reading Fluency & Expression
Oral Language & ELL
Motivation for Literacy
DESCRIPTION: Vocabulary is understanding what words mean, and this is important for literacy development because vocabulary is necessary for reading comprehension and writing (CTW, 2016). Overall, a larger vocabulary leads to better learning and understanding.
DESCRIPTION: Reading fluency and expression states that students must read words quickly and effortlessly to truly understand the meaning of the text (BLD, 2018). Fluency is important for literacy development because if one's attention is on decoding the words, they are unable to properly comprehend what they are reading (CTW, 2018). Furthermore, the best readers are fluent readers (CTW, 2018).
DESCRIPTION: Spelling and word study explains that students must learn spelling patterns and to read and write words automatically (BLD, 2018). Many words are used every day, even irregular ones (such as "laugh"), so in order to gain literacy development, students must remember strategies - such as looking for familiar morphemes - to learn and spell the words to write and read effectively (CTW, 2016).
DESCRIPTION: Writing conventions are the mechanics of writing, such as capitalization, punctuation, and writing left to right (BLD, 2018). This is vital for literacy development as the correct conventions allow students to communicate effectively and appropriately.
DESCRIPTION: Phonemic awareness is when one is taught that words can be broken into individual speech sounds (phonemes) which is necessary to sound out and spell words (BLD, 2018). This contributes to literacy development as it is correlated with success in beginning reading (CTW, 2018).
DESCRIPTION: Reading comprehension strategies explains that students must learn strategies to use when they do not understand what they are reading, such as predicting (BLD, 2018). This is important for literacy development as understanding what is being read is a vital step in critically thinking about the text (CTW, 2016).
DESCRIPTION: Oral language and ELL explains that speaking and understanding oral language is vital for reading and writing (BLD, 2018). Students' language develops and becomes more refined in this way, as students are speaking and listening to others speak in the classroom (Reading Rockets).
DESCRIPTION: Motivation for literacy is the enjoyment and appreciation of reading and writing and understanding how they are useful (BLD, 2018). Through this enjoyment, students become motivated and move involved in their literacy development.
BALANCEDLITERACYDIET :: index :: Balanced Literacy Diet
INSTRUCTION: A story is read aloud to the class with the teacher modelling expressive reading. Students can then create props related to the story and re-enact it in small groups. This is an effective activity to develop oral language because students are engaged with the hands-on art activity, are excited to work with classmates, are able to make connections between written and oral language, and can follow the expressive voice that was modelled by their teacher (BLD, 2018).
ASSESSMENT: The Junior Oral Language Screening Tool was created to assess oral language for young students in a diagnostic and formative way. The assessment asks students various questions, such as orally stating body parts on a picture (acceptable responses are provided), pronouns, tenses, and explaining scenarios. This assessment is useful because its main goal is to inform future teaching for that student to ensure that they are able to improve their oral language skills (NZ MOE, 2003).
Young Children's Oral Language Development
UNDERSTANDING: This article explains the timeline of language acquisition (ex. complex sentences around age 4). It also highlights the components of oral language: phonological (combining sounds), semantic (morphemes), and syntactic (sentences). This article contributed to my understanding because it guides teachers through student language development and explains that every student is different, interaction should be encouraged, and to model speaking and listening skills (Reading Rockets).
ASSESSMENT: Beirne-Smith & Riley (2009) state informal assessments of spelling has advantages over formal assessments, such as having a variety of sources to evaluate. An example of an informal assessment is looking over a student's written work, which is useful because it is realistic and does not require any extra work for the teacher or student. Data from these informal assessments can be collected, improved upon through lessons, and can be assessed throughout the year to monitor…
BALANCEDLITERACYDIET :: index :: Balanced Literacy Diet
INSTRUCTION: In this lesson, the teacher introduces 5-7 new words a week to the word wall. The teacher goes over tips to spell correctly, such as looking for the smaller words within the word or counting the number of letters. This instructional approach is useful because students learn how to spell new words together and go over the tips every week as opposed to having the teacher put the word on the wall without a comprehensive class discussion (BLD, 2018).
UNDERSTANDING: Chapter 5 contributed to my understanding of spelling and word study by teaching me common spelling patterns (ex. "ash") and by providing different strategies for students, such as thinking about different morphemes in the word and then chunking it (CTW, 2016). This is useful for new teachers, as spelling comes naturally to us but can be difficult for students.
ASSESSMENT: This informal assessment measures oral language for kindergarten students through 1-4 ratings under headings such as Language for Learning (retells stories), Phonemic Awareness (recognizes rhymes), and Language Structures (uses verbs in the correct tense). This assessment is useful because teachers can quickly and easily measure the progression of oral language for many students at a time throughout the year, and can use this information to inform teaching (Scholastic, 2011).
Reading Poetry with English Language Learners
UNDERSTANDING: This article encourages introducing poetry to English language learners (ELL) in an attempt to encourage oral language development through pronunciation, fluency, and expression. This article is an important read for teachers with ELL students as it states that poetry is used for oral language development because it is interesting, engaging when read and performed with others, and is found in cultures around the world (Reading Rockets).