September 2019 Vol. 18

Back to School Edition!

September is a month to settle into routines and get to know students on a deeper level both academically and social-emotionally. As you establish classroom routines, be mindful to include the environment. A literacy-rich classroom is an easy way to incorporate content-specific or area skills and words. Easy ways to build a literacy-rich classroom:

  • Classroom libraries that include a variety of genres and text types
  • Content posters
  • Anchor charts – teacher-made and co-created with students
  • Word walls
  • Labels
  • Literacy workstations
  • Writing centers
  • Computers
  • Display of student work
  • Displays of books & information
  • Bulletin boards, and
  • Plenty of opportunity to read, write, listen, and speak

Literacy Updates from IDOE

Literacy Framework

The Literacy Framework is a tool you can use to curriculum map and plan for this upcoming school year. Does your school utilize a curriculum map, scope and sequence, or pacing guide? Use the Literacy Framework to dive into each standard through question stems, practical examples, and digital resources!

Additional Literacy Resources:

Elementary Literacy Family Guides

Elementary Literacy Family Guides- Spanish Translation

Elementary Academic Vocabulary

Secondary Academic Vocabulary

A huge thank you to over 400 Indiana educators who contributed to the development of the Literacy Framework. Click here to see this list of amazing educators!

Over the course of the 2019-2020 school year, additional resources will be added. Stay tuned!

One way to increase student engagement through reading is by providing engaging texts. Help us build a database and earn Professional Growth Points (PGPs) by sharing your favorite texts and sample lesson plan ideas here using the Mentor Text Lists form. For every 10 texts you share, you will earn 1 PGP.

Have special requests for support? Feel free to reach out to us at any time. That's what we are here for!

Ideas and Insight

Five Components of Reading: Phonemic Awareness Overview

What is Phonemic Awareness?

The knowledge that spoken words can be broken apart into smaller segments of sound known as phonemes. A phoneme is the smallest unit of speech sound that separates it from another sound. The English language has 44 phonemes. These phonemes are not letter sounds-- these may be represented by different sounds.

For students to be successful, schools should teach phonemic awareness skills in isolation to small groups or one-on-one to students.

Ways to incorporate Phonemic Awareness into Instruction

  • Elkonin Boxes: used to segment words into sounds using boxes for each sound. Have students count, say, and hear the sounds, not letters, in the word.
  • Nursery Rhymes: incorporate reading, saying, or creating your own rhymes.
  • Clap/Drum Syllables: words can be broken into parts called syllables. This is an important part of decoding and spelling words.

Find it in the Literacy Framework

Using the search tool, type in Reading Foundations to access Indiana standards that utilize phonemic awareness skills. For example, first grade reading foundation standard 3.5 (1.RF.35) states "Segment the individual sounds in one-syllable words."

Practical Examples for 1.RF.3.5 include:

-During a read aloud, say a word for students to segment into individual sounds.

-Use Elkonin boxes for student to write down each sound in an one-syllable word.-Students use Elkonin boxes and counters to push up each sound in a word.

-Students pull an object from a bag, say the name, then segment each sound in the word.

These examples and considerations come from the Indiana Literacy Framework. For additional resources, guidance, and practical examples please visit the Literacy Framework here.

What does this look like in the high school setting?

Assessing Phonemic Awareness at the High School Level

Phonemic Awareness for High School Students with Diverse Backgrounds


Book Suggestions

Dyslexia Professional Awareness

IDOE will ensure all teachers working for school corporations and charter schools receive professional awareness on dyslexia. This professional awareness will include information on the characteristics of dyslexia, evidence-based interventions, and evidence-based accommodations for dyslexia. This information is offered through IDOE’s Moodle course website. Please visit IDOE’s dyslexia page under the “Dyslexia Professional Awareness” tab for a link to the professional awareness course, and directions on how to set up and log into IDOE’s Moodle website. (IC 20-35.5-6-2(B), as created by SEA 217 (2018)

Get a FREE year of digital books through Vooks!

Watch read-along animated storybooks with your kids! Good screen time you’ll love! Vooks is offering a free year subscription. Share this site with parents or use in your classroom!

Fall Conferences to Check Out!

Indiana Teachers of Writing

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$12,000 Renewal Grants for Indiana K-12 Educators

Lilly Endowment announced its 33rd Teacher Creativity Fellowship Program (TCFP). This renewal program supports Indiana educators to take intentional time to pursue their dreams and passions, explore new areas of interest, and expand existing talents or develop new ones. Renewal times encourage new experiences, exploration and reflection to discover renewed energy and enthusiasm, spark innovative approaches to teaching and leading, and reveal thoughtful ways to enhance creativity in students and classrooms. Up to 100 grants, each totaling $12,000, will be awarded in 2020. Learn more about TCFP at lillyendowment.org.

GRAMMY Museum Opportunity

My name is Kait Nader and I’m the Director of Community Engagement at the GRAMMY Museum. We have a national program called the Jane Ortner Education Award that honors a non-music educator who uses music in her or his classroom. The application is short and straight-forward with educators being asked to submit an original lesson plan that they have used in their classroom. The winning educator is able to attend the GRAMMY Awards telecast with a guest (paid for by the museum,) gets a $3,000 personal honorarium, a $1,000 honorarium for their school and is honored at a GRAMMY Museum event. Additionally, there are both in-person and online professional development programs for those interested in learning how to use music in their classroom.

Our application deadline closes in early December and I’m wondering if you would pass along information about the award to educators in your network? It’s been a small award for the past few years, but we’d really like to expand in hopes we can create a larger network of opportunities for educators.

Please find our 2020 flyer attached and more information on our website: https://www.grammymuseum.org/education/janeortnereducationaward.

Literacy and Tech: Thought of the Month!

Don't have Twitter? Check out this quick tutorial here!

Cheat sheet: Twitter for Teachers

Scholastic article: Twitter for Teachers

A great book to read: 140 Twitter Tips for Educators

Connect on Twitter!

It's been reported that 4.2 million educators use Twitter for professional conversations. As educators, there is so much we can learn from each other. We invite you to connect with us and each other!

1. Tweet about all things LITERACY using #INspirEDlit

2. Follow the hashtag and connect with other coaches and educators

3. Follow @EducateIN for the latest updates from Indiana Department of Education

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