Literate Environment Analysis By Kimberly Dunne Walden University EDUC 6706: The Beginning Reader PreK-3 Instructor: Jean Morrison
Creating a Literate Environment Literacy is a process that begins in infancy and continues into adulthood, if not throughout life (Tompkins, 2010, p. 11).Getting to Know Literacy LearnersSelecting TextsLiteracy Lesson: Interactive PerspectiveLiteracy Lesson: Critical and Response Perspective
I. Getting to Know Literacy LearnersInitially, teachers can get to know theirstudents strengths and areas in need ofimprovement through formal and informalreading assessments. Cognitive Assessments (i.e. Developmental Reading Assessment) identifies students’ independent, instructional, and frustration reading abilities (Afflerbach, 2012). This information is used to design lessons that meet the specific needs of students within a diverse classroom. Noncognitive Assessments (i.e Interest Inventories, Motivation to Read Profile) provide educators with information about students’ attitudes towards reading, their likes and dislikes, and special interest areas that will aide when selecting texts for a variety of students.
I. Getting to Know Literacy Learners (cont.) “Teachers who make use of reading inventories are given an assortment of information about their students’ literacy likes and dislikes, as well as reading performance and growth” (Afflerbach, 2012) It is the educator’s responsibility to ensure that the literacy environment fosters a student’s growth in their literacy skills (Laureate Education, Inc., 2011a). “Assessment that helps us understand and appreciate the diverse growth that students experience and the reading challenges they face must be a priority in the classroom” (Afflerbach, 2012).
II. Selecting TextsIt is essential to choose appropriate texts to use within theclassroom for instruction as well as independent reading. Theright text helps students’ to grasp what is being presented andread. Students eventually shift from learning to read toreading to learn. In order to gain and construct meaning fromtext, it must meet the interest and instructional levels of thestudents.The Literacy Matrix is a useful tool to use when selecting textfor lessons and individual students: Linguistic (words) Narrative Informational Semiotic (pictures)
II. Selecting Text (cont.) Research shows that students who are exposed to a selection of texts at an early age will show development at a more rapid rate in obtaining literacy skills (Tompkins, 2010). When selecting text, teachers must consider length, readability, and structure to ensure that it is appropriate and accessible to a group of learners (Laureate Education, Inc., 2011b)
III. Interactive Perspective of Literacy Teaches students how to read and be strategic processors of information. Goal is to improve students’ metacognitive skills, or how they think about what they are reading (Tompkins, 2010). Students must be taught comprehension strategies as well as basic reading and decoding skills in order to become well-rounded and successful readers. Strategic processing consists of: Phonics Phonemic Awareness Fluency Comprehension Vocabulary
III. Interactive Perspective of Literacy (cont.)*Activity #1: Used the informational text, Oil Spill! (Berger, 1994), todemonstrate to students how to use post-it notes to record their thinkingabout the text. Modeled how to record wonderings, reactions, and anyother thoughts/questions about the text in order to monitor how theywere thinking about what they were reading.*Activity #2: Students independently read the narrative text, Oliver andthe Oil Spill (Chandrasekhar, 1991), to practice decoding and fluency skillsas well as record their thinking on post-it notes. Students wereindividually selected to read aloud a page or two to check for wordaccuracy and understanding.*Activity #3: Web exploration of National Geographic Kids site toresearch additional information on oil spills and their effects on wildlife.Students were given the opportunity to view videos, photos, and text.The text-speech feature was enabled so that the students could accessfully access the content.
IV.Critical and Response Perspective of Literacy The purpose of critical perspective of literacy learning is to challenge students to think deeply about they read. Students learn to apply critical thinking to validate the text (Laureate Education Inc., 2011c). The purpose of the response perspective of literacy learning is to allow students the opportunity to interact and transact with the text to actively engage with the reading experience (Laureate Education Inc., 2010c). Response to text can take many forms such as journaling, dramatic reenactment, and art.
IV.Critical and Response Perspective of Literacy (cont.)*Activity #1: Students revisited a familiar text from the previous week,Oliver and the Oil Spill. While reading the text, they completed aBookmark activity and choose an interesting and confusing part, animportant word in the text, and text feature that helped them understandthe book better. They had the chance to share with their bookmarks andthinking with their peers.*Activity #2: Students used the text, Oliver and the Oil Spill, todetermine Theme. The 6 themes that second graders closely study werepresented and reviewed. The students worked collaboratively todetermine one(s) was contained in the text. They had to provideexamples from the story to support their decisions.*Activity #3: Students returned to the National Geographic website toexplore children’s blogs about oil spills. They had the chance to respondto a blog.
ReferencesAfflerbach, P. (2012). Understanding and using reading assessment, K–12 (2nd ed). Newark, DE: International Reading Association.Berger, M. (1994). Oil spill. New York, NY: HarperCollins.Chandrasekhar, A. (1991). Oliver and the oil spill. Kansas City, MO: Landmark Editions, Inc.Laureate Education, Inc. (Producer). (2011a). Getting to know your students. The Beginning Reader Prek-3. Baltimore, MD: Author.Laureate Education, Inc. (Producer). (2011b). Analyzing and selecting text. The Beginning Reader Prek-3. Baltimore, MD: Author.Laureate Education, Inc. (Producer). (2011c). Critical and response perspective. The Beginning Reader Prek-3. Baltimore, MD: Author.Tompkins, G. E. (2010). Literacy for the 21st century: A balanced approach (5th ed.). Boston: Allyn & Bacon.