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Enabling the CCSS version of exemplary adolescent literacy.
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Lexile by Chapter Guides

Lexile by Chapter Guides | AdLit | Scoop.it

What are they?

Lexile by Chapter Guides explore the text complexity within a book by providing Lexile measures for every chapter in the text. Each guide includes a graph and table displaying the Lexile information to help educators, parents, and students better understand where the peaks and valleys of complexity reside within a text. 
 


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A Guide to Producing Student Digital Storytellers

A Guide to Producing Student Digital Storytellers | AdLit | Scoop.it
Everyone tells stories: journalists, politicians, scientists and entrepreneurs. Conveying information in a coherent and compelling way is vital to success in the real world, and it’s our job as educators to prepare our students to share their ideas in effective ways.The emphasis is on empowering st

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Is cursive writing less relevant in today’s classroom?

Is cursive writing less relevant in today’s classroom? | AdLit | Scoop.it

STILLWATER, Okla. — The new Common Core State Standards, which will be fully operational beginning in the 2014 school year, lays out standards that include keyboarding proficiency by the fourth grade. But the standards make no mention of the need for cursive writing ability.

Many educators believe cursive writing is less relevant in today’s educational environment that includes personal computers, smartboards and iPads. Many believe classroom time spent on cursive writing instruction could be better spent on meeting the rigorous standards that Common Core requires.

Stillwater Public School students in kindergarten through third grade get instruction in cursive writing.

During their fourth- and fifth-grade years, students begin a more rigorous instruction on keyboard skills.

“Our theory is, students need both,” said Diane Fix, director of elementary curriculum for the Stillwater district.

At the secondary level, most teachers encourage students to submit written work electronically, or at least type it on a word processor, said Becky Szlichta, the director of secondary curriculum for the Stillwater district.

“I am not aware of any secondary teacher that would require students turn in work in longhand,” Szlichta said.

Fix said Common Core will require students taking their tests online, and that includes written essays.

Students enrolled in English II and English III at the high school will take end of instruction tests this week.

The test requires a written response on paper, but the responses do not have to be written in cursive.

Educators are judging if they want to use classroom time to teach penmanship when that skill is not evaluated on high-stakes standardized tests.

“Work submitted electronically has more tools available, like spell check,” said Stillwater High School Principal Uwe Gordon. “It’s so much better for our students.”

The National Association of State Boards of Education issued a policy statement in September that indicated there is value in cursive writing instruction.

The national panel said research suggests the practice and process of handwriting may improve a student’s cognitive and motor skills development while enhancing literacy and retention.

“We think (cursive writing) is a life skill that is still important,” Fix said.

A researcher at Indiana University asked a panel of college students to memorize a paragraph and found students who wrote the paragraph in cursive retained more information a week later than those who used a keyboard or printed the same material.

“Oh, I can totally see how that can be right,” Fix said.


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5 Tools That Demystify Text Complexity - Literacy in the Digital Age ^ Teaching Channel ^ by Steve Figurelli and Natalie Franzi

5 Tools That Demystify Text Complexity - Literacy in the Digital Age ^ Teaching Channel ^ by Steve Figurelli and Natalie Franzi | AdLit | Scoop.it
The research is clear: knowledge of words is knowledge of the world.

So what does this mean for us as educators? If we want students to access increasingly complex grade level text, we must Increase student vocabulary, knowledge, and capacity. We’ve highlighted five tools below that are a means to that end.

 

Jim Lerman's insight:

Outstanding article that highlights 5 excellent digital tools to enhance students' literacy development.


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Personalize Learning: Growth Mindset and Personalized Learning

Personalize Learning: Growth Mindset and Personalized Learning | AdLit | Scoop.it
Unbelievable conversations around growth and fixed mindset with archive of #plearnchat. There were even some controversial topics around impact to the system.
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Stop talking tech: 3 tips for pedagogy-based coaching

Stop talking tech: 3 tips for pedagogy-based coaching | AdLit | Scoop.it
Teachers care about creating authentic learning experiences, and it’s up to coaches to show how technology can help them do that.
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Using the Common Core Speaking and Listening Standards to Take the Classroom Experience to a Broader, More Authentic Audience

Using the Common Core Speaking and Listening Standards to Take the Classroom Experience to a Broader, More Authentic Audience | AdLit | Scoop.it
The following blog post is another in the Alliance’s “Core of the Matter” blog series focusing on the...

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Digital Storytelling: What it is... And... What it is NOT

Digital Storytelling: What it is... And... What it is NOT | AdLit | Scoop.it
I was lucky to have shared my childhood bedroom for a few years with my grandmother, when she had come to live with us after an illness. At bedtime, she would tell me stories of her parents and thr...

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Susan Grigsby @sksgrigsby's curator insight, August 27, 2:39 PM

I love that this article talks about how it isn't the tools but a skill. Isn't that what we're trying to teach?  Worth a read!

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Communicator, Thou Shalt Follow These Writing Edicts | Ragan

Communicator, Thou Shalt Follow These Writing Edicts | Ragan | AdLit | Scoop.it
These 10 Commandments for business writers should be etched in stone, or at least on an electronic tablet.

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Jessica Kelly's curator insight, August 7, 7:20 PM

Read them. Read them all. Remember them well. :-D

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Different types of literature and writing PDF - Learning English vocabulary and grammar

Different types of literature and writing PDF - Learning English vocabulary and grammar | AdLit | Scoop.it
Types of literature and the different ways of writing English lesson PDF



Types of literature and the different ways of writing





List of types of literature and the different ways of

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Students need writing time in every lesson!

Students need writing time in every lesson! | AdLit | Scoop.it
Let’s remember that the real work of writing workshop is writing.

 

As you begin your school year, I urge you to make room for a large chunk of writing time for every student every day. And I do mean actually writing. Not reading mentor texts, not talking to a writing partner, not uploading accompanying pictures to a blog. Yes, those are all important parts of the writing process, and yes, students need time to do those things also. Most importantly, though, students need time to write. Every single day.

As an instructional coach, I will be cognizant of ‘actual time spent writing’ in our classrooms.  I suggest collecting data on this throughout the year. Choose a student at random and spend an entire writing workshop just observing that student. Have a timer handy and record how much time that student spent actually writing on any given day. Or, if you have an instructional coach in your building, ask your coach to collect the data for you. Keep in mind that writers do often stop to think, to reread, to envision. Writing doesn’t always look like pencils scratching across paper or fingers clicking on keys.  It does, however, look very different from sharpening a pencil or talking to a writing partner.


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CBAL ELA Competency Model and Provisional Learning Progressions - home

READ THE EXECUTIVE SUMMARY

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The idea vs. the on-the-ground reality of Common Core standards

The idea vs. the on-the-ground reality of Common Core standards | AdLit | Scoop.it

"A new report finds that teachers are often assigning work that doesn’t meet new standards

"Teachers are often assigning work that asks far less of students than theCommon Core standards require, according to the organization. Children are rarely asked to write more than a few sentences at a time, for example, and are seldom asked to grapple with complex ideas and arguments.

"Those conclusions are based upon an analysis of more than 1,500 language arts, humanities and social studies assignments that teachers gave middle-school students in two unnamed urban school districts during a two-week period last school year."


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Dr. Dea Conrad-Curry's curator insight, Today, 11:37 AM

As an EQuIP peer reviewer, I find that many of the units submitted for our perusal are not of the depth the standards and the shifts related to the standards require. So this report does not surprise me. Yes, schools have had five years to do the work of teaching their educators about the standards and the degree of complexity the standards address both in the rigor expected of teachers and the rigor expected of student performance. But the fact is...for three years, schools , states, and political bodies have been fighting the change. In their fight, they ignored the professional development teachers needed in order to raise the bar and learn about content that had not fallen in their grade or expectations that had never been held in the past. 

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4 Tips for Having Students Take Notes in Google Docs ^ Teacher Tech ^ by Alice Keeler

4 Tips for Having Students Take Notes in Google Docs ^ Teacher Tech ^ by Alice Keeler | AdLit | Scoop.it
If you are having students take notes in a Google Doc, in particular if those notes require diagrams, consider providing the students with a Google Doc that contains graphic organizers. I am not advocating for fill in the blank type notes where the students fill in a word from the notes being projected. Instead, provide a structured Google Document that contains graphic organizers to save students time from having to draw the charts. Provide students the tools they will need for taking the notes.

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Globinars: Free webinar with Marie-Hélène FASQUEL: Flipped lit projects. Engaging literature students!

Globinars: Free webinar with Marie-Hélène FASQUEL: Flipped lit projects. Engaging literature students! | AdLit | Scoop.it
https://webconf.vc.dfn.de/flippedlit/

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Games to Help Students Write More Precisely and Concisely

Games to Help Students Write More Precisely and Concisely | AdLit | Scoop.it
I always seem to have students who believe that effective writing is verbose. If they exceed the page minimum, they expect a high grade.

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Literacy in the Digital Age: Five Writing Tools ^ Teaching Channel ^ by Steve Figurelli & Natalie Franzi

Literacy in the Digital Age: Five Writing Tools ^ Teaching Channel ^ by Steve Figurelli & Natalie Franzi | AdLit | Scoop.it

"Franzi and Figurelli detail ways to use five digital tools that promote authentic writing experiences for students."

 

Jim Lerman's insight:

Franzi and Figurelli describe the 5 tools in another outstanding piece of work. Well worth investigating.


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4 Brain-based Strategies to Help Struggling Readers - Brilliant or Insane

4 Brain-based Strategies to Help Struggling Readers - Brilliant or Insane | AdLit | Scoop.it
This infographic demonstrates how understanding brain-based issues can help struggling readers improve and read more effectively.
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Dyslexia: The Anatomy of an Appropriate and Effective Intervention

Dyslexia: The Anatomy of an Appropriate and Effective Intervention | AdLit | Scoop.it

These days it’s pretty hard to deny the existence of dyslexia. We know that it affects up to 1 in 5 people. We know that it occurs on a continuum from mild to profound. We know that it affects a student’s ability to decode and spell words.

 

Students with dyslexia require an intervention that explicitly teaches the underlying structure of English. Now, that word ‘explicitly’ is very important. The Oxford dictionary defines the word explicit as, ‘Stated clearly and in detail, leaving no room for confusion or doubt.’ This is exactly what an appropriate intervention does for a student with dyslexia, the teacher and student together discover exactly why words are spelled and pronounced the way they are, it leaves no room for confusion. In fact, the student who receives the appropriate, explicit intervention knows why words are spelled the way they are and can explain those reasons to anyone who asks. For example, a properly trained person will be able to explicitly explain to a student why the word <circus> has two different phonemes /k/ and /s/, represented by one grapheme <c>. They will also be able to explain that the suffix for the word <action> is <-ion> and the base is <act>. They will then take that a step further and notice the phonology change for the grapheme <t> in the word <act> to <action> and the related word <acts> <acting> <react>, <reacted>, etc. This explicitness leaves the student with no confusion about the language.

Students with dyslexia require an intervention that is multisensory and provides guided support throughout the lesson, which requires an instructor to be present. The multisensory part is what is often missing from curriculum developed by big publishers and popular in school districts and computer-based interventions leave out the guided support. The Oxford dictionary defines the word multisensory as, ‘Involving or using more than one of the senses’. These  ideas of multisensory and guided support run contrary to the fill-in-the-worksheet and repeat-after-me scope and sequence of most curriculum. If a student is receiving a program that is multisensory they are using more than their eyes and ears to learn. For students with dyslexia who are learning the structure of English, this means they are also manipulating word parts on cards, grapheme (letter) cards, using word matrices and building word sums. Word sums are the formula of a complete word that included the base and any affixes from the complete word. For example, a student who is explicitly investigating the word <signal> using multisensory techniques will hypothesize and write out the following word sum, while simultaneously announcing each letter, verbally checking for changes to the base word along the way and then rewriting the word, and the word sum looks like this: sign + al —> signal. Then he notices the base is <sign> and discovers the reason for the <g> in that word. They will also be manipulating grapheme cards to blend simple words and learn how the phonology of each grapheme blends together to create a pronounceable (readable) word. For example, they will have the grapheme cards <c> <a> <t> out on the table and using their fingers to trace below the word from left to right, they will be able to decode the new word. Do you see how all the senses are involved?

Students with dyslexia require an intervention that is structured. This means that the eclectic approach is not acceptable or appropriate. A little of this and a little of that is the opposite of structured. The Oxford dictionary defines structured as, ‘The arrangement of and relations between the parts or elements of something complex’. And if English isn’t complex (it’s not crazy) then I don’t know what is. For a student with dyslexia, this means that the person implementing the program understands what a student needs to know about one part of English before they can successfully move on to the next. For example, a first grade student may need to know that the grapheme <c> can represent more than one phoneme, /k/ and /s/, like the word <circus> listed above before they move on to the different phonemes of <g> which are /g/ and /j/.  They will also learn that digraphs like <ch> can represent three different phonemes before they can decode a word like <chef>.  In the Orton-Gillingham (OG) approach, the structured requirement is fulfilled by teaching syllable types (6 or 7 syllable types depending on which program is being used) in  a structured sequential progression. When using Structured Word Inquiry (SWI), this requirement is fulfilled by having students become proficient at finding bases and affixes and applying that knowledge to increasingly difficult words.


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A Quick & Dirty Guide to Perfect Digital Note-Taking

A Quick & Dirty Guide to Perfect Digital Note-Taking | AdLit | Scoop.it
All things being equal, I'd choose handwritten notes over digital notes any day of the week -- but all things aren't equal. While I love the feel of pen, pad, and paper, the truth is that digital notes are way more convenient in this modern age. There are several downsides, of course, and we'll address…

Via Tom D'Amico (@TDOttawa)
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Ray Bradbury: The Best Writing Teacher You Could Ever Have

Ray Bradbury: The Best Writing Teacher You Could Ever Have | AdLit | Scoop.it

Today would have been Ray Bradbury’s 95th birthday, and there are many, many stories you can tell about Bradbury’s life and career: Fahrenheit 451 was written in nine days, and cost the young autho...


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Literacy in the Digital Age: Five Writing Tools

Literacy in the Digital Age: Five Writing Tools | AdLit | Scoop.it

“Natalie Franzi and Steve Figurelli detail ways to use five digital tools that promote authentic writing experiences for students.”


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Writing as Making — The Synapse — Medium

Writing as Making - The Synapse - Medium
I live at the epicenter of the artisanal crafts movement: Oakland, CA.

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CBAL ELA Competency Model and Provisional Learning Progressions - home


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Formative assessment that closes learning gaps | SmartBlogs

Formative assessment that closes learning gaps | SmartBlogs | AdLit | Scoop.it
This post is sponsored by the National Council of Teachers in English Formative assessment, widely considered one of the most effective forms of assessm

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