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Literacy Professional Development Session

April 11, 2011
by

Melanie Campos

on 2 November 2011

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Transcript of Literacy Professional Development Session

7 Week Reading Course Fast-Tracking Developmental Reading Courses One size does not fit all Week 1: Diagnostic test and other assessments These students need a choice in what they read. By
allowing them to choose something that interests them,
they will become more intrinsically motivated to read. Students should also be involved in connecting with all types of texts in order to make reading a more meaningful experience. What does research say?
The five main components of adult reading instruction: Word Study Vocabulary Fluency Comprehension Motivation 1 2 3 4 5 We Enjoy Cooperative Group Work Use MoreTechnology Attention should be placed on the morphology (i.e. root words, prefixes, suffixes) of words so that students can break apart words into meaningful chunks to define larger words within text. We should take an interactive and connected approach in order to scaffold students into being able to manipulate words within reading contexts by teaching root words, suffixes, and prefixes while generalizing the lessons across multiple texts. Helping students pay close attention to small differences in words helps them clarify the meaning of terminology and increase vocabulary. The weakest readers with word-reading difficulties need systematic instruction in decoding multisyllabic words. Capable and proficient readers = extensive reading, writing, and speaking vocabularies
Struggling readers = vocabulary deficits throughout life Even at the adult level, teacher read alouds are important for introducing new vocabulary and content knowledge to students. Word study instruction helps vocabulary, too! We should also guide students in understanding using reference resources such as dictionaries and thesauruses. Explicitly explaining the meanings of idioms, clichés, and colloquial expressions will also enhance students’ own reading, writing, and speaking vocabularies. To combine indirect and direct instruction of vocabulary into the classroom, use literature discussion groups to provide opportunities for authentic word experiences within an active setting. In these groups, students would co-construct meanings of words and collaboratively share schema. Some fluency activities that can be done in a postsecondary reading classroom include reading aloud with a partner, tape recording oral reading for feedback, reader’s theater, reading groups, and choral reading. http://www.visuwords.com Disfluent readers are obvious; they read slowly, stopping constantly to decode words and reread. This required attention to constantly decoding can compromise comprehension and decrease reading rates. Practicing oral reading is the best way to increase fluency. Look for opportunities to connect classroom activities with your students’ lives outside and inside the classroom. Tune into the lives of your students to find out what they think is relevant and why, and then use this information to create learning opportunities that will be more relevant to them. Ideas to try:

audio podcasts
Creating and making videos
Digital book talks Blogging, incorporating social networking sites, using online discussion boards, making a video or digital book summary, writing short sequels to books, and using an interactive white board in the classroom are only a few of the ways to enhance the technology experiences of these remedial reading and writing students in the classroom. Blackboard is not enough! Feelings of negativity and animosity Avoiding reading the actual text is something these students are accustomed to doing. There is much research suggesting that teaching adults is more successful when it is linked to meaningful applications. This means that developmental education courses should be providing interesting texts relevant to students’ lives, building a support system by which these students can become independent academic readers, and allowing them to interact with each other as they would in real-life discussions. Teaching multiple approaches of comprehension strategies for both narrative and expository text (including summarizing and other synthesizing skills, text structure, concept mapping, questioning and inferring, pre-reading and previewing skills, and continuous metacognition) helps these adult struggling readers enrolled in developmental reading courses to deal with the difficulties of texts involved in higher education.
Research has shown that struggling adult readers' main deficits are comprehension-based because (1) they do not monitor their comprehension actively while they read and (2) they lack the required tools to identify and fix confusion when it occurs. Both of these reasons indicate that struggling readers have problems with metacognition, or thinking about their thinking. An easy way to get students actively involved in texts is to activate and access their schema. If students are lacking prior knowledge about a certain subject or topic that will be read and discussed in class, the instructor can facilitate schema building by previewing and pre-reading before the actual reading takes place, then reviewing key words and concepts during and after reading. Since struggling adult readers have difficulties on a variety of reading tasks and real-world applications of literacy, instructors should provide many different opportunities and strategies for comprehending text. Graphic organizers help students identify, organize, and remember important information that they are reading. They are great for visual learners and can be used before, during, and/or after reading. Teacher “think alouds” can show adult struggling readers models of what good reading looks like and the cognitive process that surround proficient reading strategies. Studies have found that metacognitive reading strategies can help facilitate students’ abilities to become more self-regulated readers and allow them to track their understanding as they read. Reading courses at the postsecondary level should also make sure that students understand the importance of active reading strategies, such as prereading, highlighting, annotating, summarizing, outlining, and chunking sections of text. These skills will prove invaluable throughout college. Think, Pair, Share
Small Group Activities
Whole Group Discussion Consistent evidence has shown that small-group and individualized instruction works best for struggling, older readers Collaboration increases the number of opportunities struggling readers have to respond and connect with text. When a struggling reader is grouped with a more capable peer, he or she is more likely to be successful with comprehending the concepts. We should never base all of our instructional decisions on standardized test scores. A huge challenge that we face is having to create instructional plans for struggling readers based on assessment data that doesn’t provide enough detailed information from an instructional standpoint. Weeks 2-6: Individualized Instruction and Interventions Our classes should use multiple types of texts (e.g. websites, picture books, newspaper articles, journal articles, blogs, novels, etc.) at varying levels in order to reach the needs of all of our students. When classrooms only use textbooks at one level, students miss out on valuable text experiences that could increase comprehension and generalization. Week 7: Book Presentations and COMPASS
Prep Independent reading assignments are a must. Book presentations can be done individually, in groups, or digitally. Showing students how the COMPASS is formatted and teaching strategies for taking the test will help to ease their minds when they sit down to take the exam at the end of the course.
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