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When it comes to professional development, Regina Teat believes building the instructional capacity of every instructor and classroom teacher is the most effective use of time and money of any program, especially using grant funding.

“When the money goes away, the capacity and knowledge through good professional development for the teacher remains,” says Teat, Director of Elementary Education and Title I & II for Dorchester County Public Schools, a rural district located on Maryland’s eastern shore.

We are entrusted with creating opportunities for all students to achieve their highest potential. Anyone can relate to this basic need: to be understood for our abilities, not categorized by our challenges. Let’s defy the stereotypes and see students for their potential, not their inability to read; let’s empower each teacher to change lives; let’s recognize each district for its ability to build a better literacy program.

What is the most effective way to teach educators effective literacy instruction? 

We define effective professional development as that which leads to changes in teaching behavior that in turn lead to optimizing student outcomes. Most teachers are not taught any of the finer points of language structure that have to be taught explicitly to students learning how to read. Teachers also need to be introduced to credible scientific guidance about teaching activities, methods and approaches that are going to work best for certain kinds of students. 

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ducators in Bradley County Schools in Cleveland, Tennessee, were faced with some staggering numbers: 48 percent of third-grade students were reading on grade level. That meant five out of every 10 were not.

“We were above the state average of 43 percent,” says Terri Murray, supervisor of Federal Programs/Media Services for the district where 10 of 11 K-5 schools are Title I. “But still, 48 was not good enough for us.”

When students can make sense of words, then they learn, grow and succeed. But getting to this point can be a struggle when students need to overcome reading challenges. Studies have shown that if students learn strategies for unlocking multisyllabic words and academic vocabulary with fluency and confidence, then they will achieve long-term results.

9/18/2017

When students can make sense of words, then they learn, grow and succeed. But, getting to this point can be a struggle when students need to overcome reading challenges. Studies have shown that if students learn strategies for unlocking multisyllabic words and academic vocabulary with fluency and confidence, then they will achieve long-term results.

Through e-content provider OverDrive, Texas district sees major upswing in books read

Increasing the use of digital library content was one of the goals outlined in the North East Independent School District’s (ISD) instructional improvement plan starting in the 2013-14 school year. The San Antonio district, which enrolls 68,000 students, had many eBooks and digital audiobooks, but most students were simply not using the content.

“It is hard to provide everything students could want in one print collection,” says Faye Hagerty, director of library services. “But online collections allow us to provide far more options.”

Literacy solution myON expands reading resource options in Idaho district

A wealth of choices. Accessible at home or at school. Both fiction and nonfiction options. Those were the qualifications for new ELA software for the 37,000 students of West Ada School District in western Idaho.

“We had other instructional reading tools, but they were very expensive and did not provide content at the time,” says Laura Gilchrist, ELA curriculum coordinator.

By all accounts, Marysville School District in Michigan is a high-success, high-performance district. While the average state graduation rate hovers at about 78 percent, Marysville graduates 95 percent of its students. It’s a point of pride that students exit Marysville—a suburban community located 55 miles northeast of Detroit—prepared to meet the rigorous demands of higher education.

Connecticut elementary schools see boost in books read and Lexile scores after implementing myON

The push toward digital learning in Meriden Public Schools in Connecticut started about six years ago with a simple premise: Learning doesn’t stop when school ends. Superintendent Mark D. Benigni understood that advancing off-campus education would require a strong and engaging digital reading program. Soon he knew he had a winner with myON, which provides anytime, anywhere access to more than 10,000 enhanced digital books with multimedia supports, real-time reporting and assessments, and embedded close reading tools.

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