Links to Literacy

LINKING EDUCATORS TO LITERACY - HSSD 2015-16 - Vol. 7

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Mini-Lesson: Student Goal Setting

Enjoy this short video in preparation for our November staff meeting. Notice how the teacher explains the importance of goal setting.
Fourth Grade Goal Setting in Narrative Writing

Units of Study: FAQ

Will a communication be made to parents regarding the new Units of Study adoption in K-8, expectations, rubrics, and lower scores that may occur this year in comparison to previous years before report cards?


Crystal Cook, HSSD Literacy Coordinator, is drafting a communication that will be shared with parents.


How do we grade and report out on spelling, capitalization, and punctuation?


The grading system of spelling, capitalization, and punctuation hasn't changed with our Units of Study adoption. It has just provided another opportunity to reflect on and evaluate students' ability to control writing conventions. Continue discussions with grade level teams regarding consistency and past practice scoring procedures. Your grade level representative can also add this topic to the agenda for upcoming curriculum team meetings to ensure district consistency.


It takes so long to grade using the new rubrics. Why can't I just use my old ones?


With this three year district-wide implementation process, it will be necessary to learn and adjust to the differences in the language and procedures. Initially, the writing pieces may require more time and attention, but as teachers become more familiar with rubric and corresponding lesson language the time commitment will lessen. The purpose for evaluating the on-demand writing pieces is to inform your instruction.


Do I share this rubric with parents? The grade level label and rubric language is confusing to me. How do I explain it to parents? Can't we use the checklist?


At a summer training, it was was suggested to remove (black out) the grade levels at the top of the rubric if you choose to share with parents. The focus should be more on the evidence of writing behaviors rather than on the grade levels. The purpose of the rubric is to identify teaching points. The checklists are for students to use for goal setting and may also help clarify expectations.

If you would like to submit your own questions, use the link below!

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2015-16 Units of Study Expectations

Rubrics: All grade levels will use Lucy Calkins' rubrics to score all areas (e.g., conventions, structure, genre).


Grading: Each unit will be taught and assessed at least one time this year. Use post on-demand assessment data and consider other important aspects of student writing to inform grading decisions (e.g., notebook entries, drafts and publications).


Report Cards: Writing standards can be aligned to follow Units of Study program.


*This is year 1 of a 3 year implementation.

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Upcoming Literacy Events

  • November staff meeting: Student Checklists and Goal Setting
  • Casual Conversation Topic: Units of Study Check in

Casual Conversations

We will be hosting monthly informal conversations on various literacy topics. Join us for collaborative conversations about topics relating to best practices in literacy.

Topic: Writing


Forest Glen Room 19: Nov. 20 @ 8:00

Howard Room 8: Nov. 20 @ 7:45

Suamico Room 121: Nov. 9 @ 3:30

Bay Harbor Library: Nov. 11 @ 8:00

Meadowbrook Room 124: Nov. 17 @ 3:30

Lineville Literacy Lounge: Nov. 17 @ 3:15

Bay View Library Nov. 11 @ 2:45

Feel free to attend any session.

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Contact Information

Howard-Suamico Literacy Coach Team