Literate Environment Analysis Presentation Avril Cogle Walden University Cindee Easton EDUC-6706 The Beginning Reader, PreK-3 June 18, 2012
Getting to Know Literacy Learners As an educator it is crucial that you find ways to have a better understanding of students as inimitable literacy learners. When you get to know your students in regards to their literacy development it easier for you as an educator to support their literacy accomplishments and to promote their development as lifelong proficient readers. “The better you know your students the better able you will be to connect them with text that will impact them in profound ways” (Laureate Education Inc., 2009). There are a varieties of ways in which a teacher can get to know the cognitive and non-cognitive aspects of his or her students. This can be done through the use of Reading Inventories. Reading Inventories are “particularly effective in providing information that will guide teachers instructional planning” (Afflerbach, 2007).
Getting to Know Literacy Learners Cognitive Assessment: The Developmental Reading Assessment [DRA 1] (Beaver, 2001). This assessment was used to evaluate a small group of students’ reading engagement, oral reading fluency and comprehension skills.
Getting to Know Literacy Learners Non- Cognitive Assessment: Motivation to Read Profile [MRP] (Grambrell, Palmer, Codling, & Mazzoni, 1996) survey. It gave me insights into the three students I assessed self concept as readers and the value they saw in reading. Below are two sample questions:
Getting to Know Literacy Learners Non- Cognitive Assessment: The Elementary Reading Attitude Survey (ERAS) assessed the three students’ recreational and academic reading (McKenna & Kear, 1990). Below is a sample question:"For students to be successful they must be motivated, have a positive attitude, good self-concept, and capable of making accurate attributions for their performances" Afflerbach (2007).
Selecting Texts Once teachers comprehend what their students need to learn, what they like to do, and what motivates them, it is easier for them to select appropriate engaging texts with these students in mind. For the three students I worked with I choose texts that best suited their individual needs and their interests. I choose informational, narrative, and online texts for the three students I worked with. I believe that it is important that students are given equal opportunity to be exposed to a variety of texts.
Selecting Texts Dr. Hartman Literacy Matrix (Laureate Education, Inc., 2009) is like a handy tool that gives a visual picture of the types of texts that students are exposed to. It helps a teacher to see the types of books that students are exposed to and whether or not they are given equal opportunity with all books. A book can be semiotic and falls in the narrative quadrant, it is wordless but tells a story. It can also be linguistic and falls in the narrative quadrant meaning that it has mainly words but it tells a story. It can be linguistic but is mainly informational and semiotic for example an online text that consists of a still or moving pictures and is mainly informational. It is important to take books that we are selecting and move them along the continuum so that students are given the right book that suit their needs and interests.
Selecting Texts Analyzing and selecting texts all have an important place in the classroom. The continuum gives teachers a full representation of the kinds of books that all students are engaging with. It is vital to move students along the continuum so that they can reach their full literacy potential (Laureate Education, Inc., 2009).
Selecting Texts Another way to analyze and select text is to examine it in terms of difficulty. Dr. Almasi explained this by using the Literacy Matrix shown below (Laureate Education, Inc., 2009a). She explained that a text difficulty can be judged by the following:1.Readability:These includes (a) sentence length ( b) number of sentences ( c) number of syllables ( d) compactness of concept2. Text length3. Text structure ( e.g. informational, descriptive, poetic)4. Size of print5. Visual support (e.g. charts, graphs, photographs)It is vital when analyzing and selecting texts teachers based their selections and analysis on the needs of students and the text properties (Laureate Education, Inc., 2009a).
Literacy Lesson: Interactive Perspective The interactive perspective on literacy learning main aim is to teach students to read and write accurately, fluently, and with comprehension. “The Interactive Perspective teaches children how to be literate learners who can navigate the textual world independently” (Laureate Education, Inc., 2009). A critical factor of a students development as readers is the ability for the teacher to be able to employ effective reading strategies that will help them to become proficient readers. The strategies that are employed should be well executed so as to support students self-sufficient use of the different literacy strategies and promote the development of their literacy skills. As a teacher of literacy it is important that I select the right text and devise varied instructional practices that will help with the language and literacy development of my students. It is also vital that I create ways to inspire my students to become strategic independent readers and thinkers thus enabling them to maximize their full literacy potential.
Literacy Lesson: Interactive PerspectiveI worked with a group of three students forliteracy instruction. The focus was onword recognition and comprehensionstrategies. The text that I used for thislesson was A Camping Spree with Mr. Magee written by (Dunsen, 2003). This narrative text was specially chosen because the three students I worked with expressed their love for camping. This was a way to motivate them. To activate their prior knowledge students worked in mixed groups and wrote down on flip charts what they knew about camping.
Literacy Lesson: Interactive Perspective Realia was also used to activate prior knowledge through discussion.
Literacy Lesson: Interactive Perspective Students discussed the different family words for “camp” and used them in sentences. Students role-play vocabulary words for better understanding. The vocabulary words were written on cards in both English and Spanish to support the English Language Learner that was in the group. Pictures of the vocabulary words were also placed with words and placed on the word wall for future reference. Students made prediction through picture walk and discussion.
Literacy Lesson: Interactive Perspective Students refined their predictions by making reference to the text (Tompkins, 2010). In the end students and teacher engaged in Grand Conversation (Tompkins, 2010) activity. We discussed what we found interesting about the story; then made text to text connection, text to self connection, and text to world connection. Students summarized the main events in the story through dramatization. Students read along with the story for fluency and comprehension online at http://www.storytimestandouts.com/2011/02/14/picture-books-best/highlighting-one- . Students worked independently by answering comprehension questions based on story in their Reading Logs. They also did an open-mind portrait of either Mr. Magee or Dee the dog to show his or its thoughts the night when their camper (van) fell into the river.
Literacy Lesson: Critical and Response Perspective Successful readers know how to elicit meanings from texts. They are able to make a representation of ideas that are being expressed in text, summarize, make judgment, evaluate, think critically about text and respond to the text in a personal and emotional manner. The capability to reflect critically about a text is essential. It is vital that teachers utilize critical and respond perspectives in their classrooms instructions so that they can give their students the opportunity to interrogate any texts in ways that will lead to their full literacy success. The critical perspective is used to “teach children how to critically examine text” while the response perspective “gives children the opportunity to experience and respond to texts in a personal and emotional way” (Laureate Education, Inc., 2009).
Literacy Lesson: Critical and Response Perspective For the critical and response perspective lesson I worked with the same three students. I modeled various strategies for them so that they would be able to apply whatever strategies learned to make judgment, evaluate and think critically about the text. They would also be able to use the strategies learned to read, react, and respond to the text in a variety of meaningful ways (Walden University, 2012). I did Shared Teaching through Interactive Read Aloud. According to (Durand, Howell, Schumacher, & Sutton, 2008), interactive read aloud supports meaning and boosts the interaction between the text and the students.
Literacy Lesson: Critical and Response Perspective The story that I engaged my students in was Thea the Yellow Tomato written by (Brown, 1998). This is a story about Thea, the only yellow tomato in a school of red tomatoes, has no friends to sit with during lunch, or play with during recess, but she eventually learns not to feel different when she finally found acceptance from her classmates. This was a story to help my students understand, appreciate, and respect each other’s differences.
Literacy Lesson: Critical and Response PerspectiveThe activities and strategies in the lesson used to build students’ critical and response perspectives were: Activated students prior knowledge through questioning. “Questioning the Author” Tompkins (2010) a few examples: Why do you think the writer wrote three of the title words in red and one in yellow? What is she trying to tell us? Why do you think the author has an illustration of an extremely large yellow tomato along with two minute red tomatoes on the cover of the book? What is she trying to convey to us? Students Talk Partners to get answers to questions asked. Picture walk to make predictions about the story. Students role-play some of the vocabulary words and used them in sentences for better understanding. “The understanding of word meanings is essential to successful and fluid comprehension in reading” (Herrell & Jordan, 2008).
Literacy Lesson: Critical and Response PerspectiveOther activities through out the lesson to build students critical and response perspectives were: Thought Tracking: Students discussed what they thought the characters in the story were thinking. Think Aloud: Students explained what they were thinking about a character and author. Hot Seat : “this allows students to explore character, analyze story events, make inferences, and supply different interpretations for the story being read (Tompkins, 2010). Grand Conversation: Used with students for them to connect to text in a personal and emotional manner through text to text connection. Learning Log “It is a place for the students to think on paper” (Tompkins, 2010) Reading Logs: They responded to text in a personal and emotional manner. Open- Mind Portraits: Students were given the opportunity to drew the main character or a character of their choice and write their reflection about that character. Drama was used to summarize story and for deeper understanding of the text.
Conclusion Conclusion: Creating a Literate Environment for our students is very important. It is vital that as teachers we get to know our students, select and analyze texts that cater to their varied needs, plan effective instructions that encompasses all three perspectives which will give our students the opportunity to interact, make analytical judgment and respond to texts in consequential ways.
References Afflerbach, P. (2007). Understanding and using reading assessment, K– 12 (2nd ed.). Newark, DE: International Reading Association. Beaver, J. M. (2001). Developmental reading assessment, grades K-3. Parsippany, NJ: Celebration Press. Brown, S. ( 1998) Thea the yellow tomato. Evanston, IL: Freedom Pub Co. Dunsen, C.V. (2003).A Camping Spree with Magee. British Columbia V6P6E5, BC: Chronicle Books LLC. Dunsen, C.V. (2003).A Camping Spree with Magee. Retrieved from http://www.storytimestandouts.com/2011/02/14/picture-books- best/highlighting-one-of-my-all-time-favourites-a-camping-spree-with-mr- magee/. Durand, C., Howell, R., Schumacher, L. A., & Sutton, J. (2008). Using interactive read-alouds and reader response to shape students concept of care. Illinois Reading Council Journal, 36(1), 22–29.
References Gambrell, L. B., Palmer, B. M., Codling, R. M., & Mazzoni, S. A. (1996). Assessing motivation to read. The Reading Teacher, 49(7), 518–533. Herrell, A., & Jordan, M. (2008). 50 strategies for teaching English language learners (3rd ed.). Upper Saddle River, NJ: Pearson. Laureate Education, Inc. (Producer). (2009). Analyzing and selecting texts [Video webcast]. Retrieved from http://class.walden.edu/webapps/portal/frameset.jsp?tabtabgroupid=21&url=%Weba Laureate Education, Inc. (Executive Producer). (2009). Getting to know your students. The Beginning Reader, PreK–3. Baltimore,MD: Author. McKenna, M. C., & Kear, D. J. (1990). Measuring attitude toward reading: A new tool for teachers. The Reading Teacher, 43(9), 626–639. Tompkins, G. E. (2010). Literacy for the 21st century: A balanced approach (5th ed.). Boston: Allyn & Bacon. Walden University. (2012). Framework for Literacy Instruction. Retrieved month, day, 2012 from http://sylvan.live.ecollege.com/ec/courses/37910/CRSWUPSYC62053502436/ Framework for Literacy Instruction 03-10. doc.