Chapter 4- ELA made SIMPLE
If you're born poor, you'd better start reading - Joe Queenan
Let's face it: reading is the most important subject in school. It's more important that all the other subjects. -Rafe Esquith
"We are what we read," and inversely, "we are what we don't read"
Readicide- when pseudo-standards kill authentic literacy
Standards rob us of what should be our true priorities: large amounts of meaningful reading, discussion, and writing.
The impact would be colossal if, every year, students:
- Read, discussed and wrote about 15-20 fiction and nonfiction books (some self selected)
- Read and discussed and wrote about 30-40 interesting poems, newspaper, or magazine/online articles
- Wrote many short, informal pieces and one longer, formal, argumentative or interpretive paper each month.
Virtually and student can learn the mechanics of reading to decode grade-level text in about 100 days.
The highest performing teachers don't wast time, they don't do arts and crafts, and are always on task.
For every assignment that starts with reading we should:
- teach vocab
- establish purpose for reading (background knowledge)
- teach and model how to annotate/underline/take notes
- discuss the work using a rubric
- write about the work
- use students and professional exemplars as teaching tools