One way to help make a curriculum more supportive of students and teachers is to incorporate graphic organizers. Graphic organizers come in many varieties and have been widely researched for their effectiveness in improving learning outcomes for various students.
When incorporated into classroom practice, the formative assessment process provides information needed to adjust teaching and learning while they are still happening. The process serves as practice for the student and a check for understanding during the learning process.
K-W-L is an introductory strategy that provides a structure for recalling what students know about a topic, noting what students want to know, and finally listing what has been learned and is yet to be learned.
This resource offers insights from a teacher on literacy standards in the content areas and comprehension strategies: "While trying to establish a strong scaffold for the cognitive stamina needed to master the skills in the Common Core Literacy Standards, I realized I was going about it all wrong."
A Word Sort is a simple small group activity. Students list key words from a reading selection. (Alternatively, the teacher may provide a list of terms prior to the reading activity.) Students identify the meaning and properties of each word and then "sort" the list into collections of words with similar features.
A work in progress, CommonLit, is a middle school resource developed by teachers that is collecting examples of high-quality texts, and sorting them by reading level, and by themes for student discussion.
An Anticipation Guide is a strategy that is used before reading to activate students' prior knowledge and build curiosity about a new topic. Before reading a selection, students respond to several statements that challenge or support their preconceived ideas about key concepts in the text.
Students need to think while they are reading. By using modeling, coached practice, and reflection, you can teach your students strategies to help them think while they read and build their comprehension.
Learn how to set up and use the jigsaw teaching strategy effectively in your classroom. Two different methods are given to use in your classroom. You can use one or both to enhance learning and cooperative group skills.
This graphic organizer was designed by Dorothy Frayer and her colleagues at the University of Wisconsin to provide for a thorough understanding of new words. Students are asked to provide a Definition of the word, Facts or Characteristics of the word, Examples, and Nonexamples.
"One role of the literacy leadership team is to identify specific strategies to be implemented by all teachers in order to reinforce the use of the strategies with different types of texts across content areas."
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