Inside the ELA Classroom

October 2019

25 Reading Strategies That Work In Every Content Area

Did you know that Social Studies and Science content can be an interesting mix of itemized information, and traditional paragraphs/imagery. Students are expected to read primary and secondary sources closely, analyze the text, determine central ideas, and distinguish between fact, fiction, and reasoned judgements. As students matriculate through school, they must acquire a keen set of skills and strategies to lift the knowledge from the source and combine it with previously taught information.


By incorporating reading strategies across the content areas, students are able to better understand texts not only in the reading class, but other courses as well as make connections to the outside world.


25 Reading Strategies That Work In Every Content Area


1. Reread

2. Activate Prior Knowledge

3. Use Context Clues

4. Infer

5. Think Aloud

6. Summarize

7. Locate Key Words

8. Make Predictions

9. Use Word Attack Strategies

10. Visualize

11. Use Graphic Organizers

12. Evaluate Understanding

13. Question the Text

14. Stop!

15. Monitor & Repair Understanding (While Reading)

16. Paraphrase

17. Annotate the Text

18. Adjust Reading Rate

19. Prioritize Information

20. Use Graphic Notetaking

21. Predict

22. Set a Reader Purpose

23. Text-connections (text-to-self, text-to-text, text-to-world)

24. Skim

25. SSQ (Stop, Summarize, Question)


25 Reading Strategies That Work In Every Content Area was retrieved on September 21, 2018 from teachthought: We Grow Teachers at

https://www.teachthought.com/literacy/25-reading-strategies-that-work-in-every-content-area/

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Writing improves students communication skills and provides a method for expression. No matter the age, grade level or ability of students, consistent writing practice boosts the students' skills and comfort level. It helps cement new concepts by directing students to describe learning in their own words. Through writing students are forced to organize their thoughts, sequence ideas into a story, and record important moments.


The ELA Assesslets and Georgia Milestone provided data to develop the Targeted Writing Plan. Student data is the driving force to adjust instructional practices in writing.


Elementary Plan

Secondary Plan


It is my hope that your students will enjoy the 2nd installment of our Writing Initiative.

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Recipe for Reading: Intervention Strategies for Struggling Readers

Did you know that Recipe for Reading is a comprehensive, multisensory, phonics-based reading program? All kindergarten teachers have the manual, workbooks 1 & 2, as well as the decodable readers. This research based program is designed for beginning, at-risk and struggling readers.


Decodable books and text passages are an important part of a structured literacy approach. In order to make the text more readable, several high-frequency words are incorporated. As students learn new parts of the alphabetic code text should expand to include newly learned 'graphemes' and 'morphemes.'

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Read for the Record

On November 7th, we will celebrate Read for the Record® and the power of reading! Jumpstart’s Read for the Record brings together millions of people each year in classrooms, libraries, community centers, and homes across the US. Coweta County School System elementary and select middle and high school students will participate in this national reading campaign.


This year’s book selection, Thank You, Omu!, by Oge Mora, tells the story of a generous elderly woman who makes a fantastic pot of thick red stew.

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Teachers are powerful. And almost everything we do improves learning (has an effect size above zero). Teachers can increase their power on student learning by knowing the impact of strategies they are using -- and by adopting strategies that work better.


Read this article by John Hattie to learn more about what he means by "Know thy impact." Investigate effect sizes Hattie's research has revealed for a variety of strategies that have been implemented in the classroom.

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Takeaway from Visible Learning

#1: The impact of an intervention should be measured

Visible Learning for Literacy argues that teachers should be guided by research, and that interventions need to be measured in order to be considered significant and worthy of widespread adoption.


#2: Teachers are paramount

Visible Learning for Literacy affirms that teachers are a critical component to successful outcomes for students. Some of the most powerful instructional effects result from teachers setting expectations for students, creating clarity around instruction, demonstrating credibility, and giving effective feedback. The teacher-student relationship is a key ingredient for learning.


Dr. Natalie Saaris, November 8, 2016

The above information was pulled from Actively Learn

https://www.activelylearn.com/post/5-takeaways-from-visible-learning-for-literacy

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The District Renaissance Place site has been upgraded to the new platform. Save the link below in order to access.


Renaissance LOGIN: https://global-zone50.renaissance-go.com/welcomeportal/51144


Click on the graphic above or HERE to access some step-by-step processes to help maneuver the new platform.



Don’t forget, we have the online support of Renaissance

  • Live Chat: The link for the live chat is in the upper right-hand corner of your Renaissance home page when you are logged in.
  • Email Support: Email us at answers@renaissance.com.
  • Renaissance Refresher: Subscribe to the bi-weekly E-Newsletter and stay informed about key updates. The newsletter includes tips and resources.

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The Quick Write is a short written response that takes 2-10 minutes. Students can respond to an open ended question or prompt. Why should we incorporate quick writes in the classroom? This strategy is used to develop writing fluency, create a habit of reflection, and informally assess student thinking.


Quick Writes can be used as an introduction to a new unit in order to determine the students prior knowledge and/or pique interest ni the topic. They also provide opportunities to reinforce reading skills through prompts that require summarization or analyzation of information.

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Writing Ideas for October

1. Write a day in the life of a Giant Pumpkin.

2. I can tell it is autumn (fall) because...

3. What happened the day that it rained candy corn?

4. What are your favorite sights, smells and sounds of autumn?

5. If I had a magic broomstick, I would...

6. Persuade someone to go with you on a nature hike.

7. So far my favorite subject of this school year is ______________ because...

8. Explain the tradition of trick-or-treating to someone who has never done it before.

9. You decided to create the silliest Halloween costume ever. Describe it.

10. If I could be any cartoon character, I would be _____. Share why you chose that character.

11. Describe how the weather changes from summer to fall.

12. Compare and contrast fall and spring.

13. Imagine you are the football during a Friday night game. What do you hear? What do you see? What do you feel?

14. Write a story on the day the leaves refused to fall from the trees.

15. Because Fire Prevention Week is in October, Smokey the Bear decided to visit your classroom. Tell us about that visit. What did he say? What did Smokey the Bear do? What did he wear? How did you feel to see a bear in your classroom?

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Scholastic Art & Writing Awards

The Scholastic Art & Writing Awards are the nation’s longest-running and most prestigious recognition program for creative teens in grades 7–12. Through the Scholastic Awards, teens in grades 7–12 (ages 13 and up) from public, private, or home schools can apply in 29 categories of art and writing for their chance to earn scholarships and have their works exhibited and published. Beyond the Awards, the Alliance for Young Artists & Writers produces a number of programs to support creative students and their educators, including the Art.Write.Now.Tour, the National Student Poets Program, the Scholastic Awards Summer Workshops and Scholastic Awards Summer Scholarships programs, the Golden Educators Residency, and much more.


For the 2019 competition, students submitted nearly 340,000 works of visual art and writing to the Scholastic Awards; nearly 90,000 works were recognized at the regional level and celebrated in local exhibitions and ceremonies. The top art and writing at the regional level were moved onto the national stage, where more than 2,700 students earned National Medals.


Students may begin submitting work in September by uploading it to an online account.

American Foreign Service High School Essay Contest

The American Foreign Service Association’s national high school essay contest completed its twenty-first year with nearly 700 submissions from 41 states and five countries.


Age Group: 9th–12th grades

Deadline for submission: April 6, 2020


How to Enter: Each year a new prompt is published in September. Stay tuned to the contest web page so you can find it when school begins. Winners receive full tuition to the Semester at Sea program as well as a trip to Washington, DC, to meet with a leader at the Department of State.

John F. Kennedy Profile in Courage Essay Contest

Description: This annual contest invites students to write about a political official’s act of political courage that occurred after Kennedy’s birth. The winner receives $10,000 as well as a trip to Boston to accept the award.


Age Group: 9th–12th grades


How to Enter: Students must submit 700–1000 word essays by January 18, 2019. The essays must feature more than five sources and a full bibliography. Read the requirements and find the link for submission here.


Requirements

  • The contest deadline is January 17, 2020 at 11:59 PM (EST).
  • Essays can be no more than 1,000 words but must be a minimum of 700 words. Citations and bibliography are not included in the word count.
  • Essays must be the original work of the student.
  • John F. Kennedy, Robert F. Kennedy, and Edward M. Kennedy are not eligible subjects for essays.
  • Essays must describe an act of political courage by a U.S. elected official who served during or after 1917, the year John F. Kennedy was born. The official may have addressed an issue at the local, state, or national level. See Contest Topic and Information and Helpful Tips for Writing Your Essay for more information.
  • Essays about past recipients of the Profile in Courage Award will be disqualified unless they describe an act of political courage other than the act for which the award was given.
  • Essays about the senators in Profiles in Courage will be disqualified.
  • Essays must have a minimum of five sources.

Engineer Girl Annual Essay Contest

Engineer Girl sponsors an essay contest with topics centered on the impact of engineering on the world. Students can win up to $500 in prize money. This contest is a nice bridge between ELA and STEM and allows teachers to incorporate an interdisciplinary project into the curriculum. The new contest prompt is published in October. Check out the educator’s page for more information about how to support this contest at your school.


Age Groups: 3rd–5th grades; 6th–8th grades; 9th–12th grades

Essays must be submitted by February 2020


How to Enter: Students submit their work electronically. Word limit varies by grade level. Check out the full list of rules and requirements here.

Bennington Young Writers Awards

Bennington College offers a competition in three categories: poetry (a group of three poems), fiction (a short story or one-act play), and nonfiction (a personal or academic essay). First place winners receive $500.


Age Group: 10th–12th grades


How to Enter: The contest runs from September 1 to November 1, so stay tuned to the website for information about how to submit entries.


Each year, students in the 10th, 11th, and 12th grades are invited to enter in one of the following categories with the following submission:


  1. Poetry: A group of three poems

  2. Fiction: A short story or one-act play (1,500 words or fewer)

  3. Nonfiction: A personal or academic essay (1,500 words or fewer)


A first, second, and third place winner is selected in each category.


Awards & Rules

First-place winners in each category are awarded a prize of $500; second-place winners receive $250; third-place winners receive $125.


  • All entries must be original work and sponsored by a high school teacher.

  • Judges include Bennington College faculty and students.

The competition runs annually from September 1 to November 1. Winning entries are posted by April 19.

The Ocean Awareness Contest

This competition invites students to use their creativity to make a difference for our planet. As the creators share on their website, “Our contest is a call for young artists, thinkers, and activists who are concerned about the future of our human and natural communities to use their creative voices to explore, express, and advocate for issues related to climate change and our oceans.” Students are eligible for a wide range of monetary prizes.


Age Groups: Ages 11–14 (Jr. Division); Ages 15–18 (Sr. Division)

Contest deadline: June 15, 2020


How to Enter: Students may submit work in the categories of art, poetry, prose, film, or music which must always be accompanied by a reflection. Check out the contest details for a set of educator resources as well as the new contest prompt coming out in September.

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ELA Professional Learning Sessions

ELEMENTARY


Tuesday, October 1st, 2:45 - 4:00pm

Webinar

Getting Started with Raz Plus

Raz-Plus makes blended learning possible with thousands of differentiated reading resources that enable you to strengthen the connection between what is taught and what students practice on their own. In this session, we provide an overview of how Raz-Plus supports teacher-led instruction, independent reading practice, formative assessment, and data-driven reporting to inform instruction and improve students' reading skills. This session is for brand new teacher users. Use this link to register/participate.


Tuesday, October 8th, 3:00 - 4:00pm

Werz

Multi-Sensory Phonics

In this professional learning session, participants will participate in mini-sessions that review best practices for phonics instruction. Discussion will include how to differentiate activities to cover multiple grade levels.


Tuesday, October 8th, 3:00 - 4:00pm

Webinar

How to Access and Analyze Reports - Using Data to Inform Instruction

The Raz Plus Student Management page includes a variety of reports, which allow teachers to monitor student activity and assignment progress. In this session, learn how to access and analyze the reports in Raz-Plus to inform your instruction. Session objectives include: access of the Reports Dashboard, Student Activity Reports, Skill Report and tabs established for real time data.Use this link to register/participate.


Wednesday, October 9th, 9:00 -3:00pm

West GA RESA, Grantville

Reading, Writing and Science: The Perfect Combination

Join GaDOE Science Program Manager, Amanda Buice, to explore how science can be the engine that drives literacy. You’ll walk out with strategies to support obtaining, evaluating and communicating in the elementary science classroom. Complete the district and RESA registration process. Costs will be covered with school based funding.


Friday, October 11th, 8:00 - 11:30am

Werz, PLC

GMAS Scoring Institute Elementary Narrative - Redelivery

Elementary teachers will participate in a redelivery of the Georgia Milestone Scoring Institute for Narrative Writing. Participants will discuss elements of the holistic rubric, range finding characteristics that determine the various levels and collaborate to determine effective strategies to support writing instruction in the ELA classroom and across the curriculum. Participants are asked to bring a charged chromebook.


Tuesday, October 15th, 2:45 - 3:45pm

Webinar

Raz-Plus: New Features

This class introduces participants to the new and updated features of Raz-Plus. Learn how these new features support what you already do in the classroom and make it easier for you to locate meaningful resources, create assignments that contain multiple resources, share resources and collaborate with fellow teachers, group students according to ability, and communicate with students. Use this link to register/participate.


Tuesday, October 22nd, 9:00 - 3:00pm

West GA RESA, Grantville

Model ELA Classroom for K-5 Teachers

Participants will experience hands-on practice in guided reading, independent reading, conferring, strategy groups, and writing. The ELA Model Classroom Day will provide opportunities to see balanced literacy in action. The all-you-can-learn atmosphere allows teachers to experience in-depth learning about best practices in literacy. Complete the district and RESA registration process. Costs will be covered with school based funding.


Tuesday, October 22nd, 2:45 - 3:45pm

Webinar

Introducing the New Vocabulary A-Z

The new Vocabulary A-Z introduces a new design for teachers and an all-new online student experience for individual practice. This session will introduce you to these exciting enhancements and show you how you can use the new Vocabulary A-Z to engage students and effectively support vocabulary and literacy learning. Use this link to register/participate.


Thursday, October 24th, 3:30 - 5:00pm

Werz

Elementary/Secondary District ELA Meeting

ELA teachers are invited to participate in this cross grade level meeting. Visiting presenter, Tracey Wiley, Education Outreach Specialist at GPB, will provide training on Writing Instruction. Participants are asked to bring a Chromebook.


Tuesday, October 29th, 2:45 - 3:00pm

Webinar

Student Experiences and Parent Connections at Home or On the Go!

Raz Plus and Vocabulary A-Z feature a digital library of resources for students to read for fun and practice. It is easy for students to quickly find relevant, high-interest content that excites them! Raz Kids and VAZ Kids also features a variety of annotation tools that enable teachers to tailor their students’ learning to be more personalized and meaningful. This session will also provide ideas and suggestions to help parents with support on the student portal. Use this link to register/participate.


Wednesday, October 30th, 3:30 - 5:00pm

West GA RESA, Grantville

Differentiation of Reading Tasks by Lexile Level

Participants will gain a deeper understanding of the role Lexile levels play in differentiated instruction. This session will provide the opportunity to examine the connection between Lexile level and text complexity in order to support instructional planning and the delivery of instruction. Register here.


Tuesday, November 5, 2019

Webinar

Using Raz Plus to Support Differentiated Instruction

Are you planning for differentiated instruction or striving to provide integrated lessons? Are you searching for ways to address the needs of all your learners? In this session, learn how Raz Plus can be used to support your students and provide collaboration with classroom teachers. Use this link to register/participate.



Please review your Professional Learning Schedule for a complete list of opportunities.


MIDDLE


Wednesday, October 9th, 9:00 -3:00pm

West GA RESA, Grantville

Reading, Writing and Science: The Perfect Combination

Join GaDOE Science Program Manager, Amanda Buice, to explore how science can be the engine that drives literacy. You’ll walk out with strategies to support obtaining, evaluating and communicating in the elementary science classroom. Complete the district and RESA registration process. Costs will be covered with school based funding.


Wednesday, October 17th, 9:00 -3:00pm

West GA RESA, Grantville

Model ELA Classroom for Educators 6th - 12th

Participants will dig deeper into reading and writing strategies to better support middle and high school students. The opportunity is built around evidence-based strategies and high leverage practice. Complete the district and RESA registration process. Costs will be covered with school based funding.



Monday, October 21st, 4:00 - 5:00pm

Werz

ELA Secondary Remediation Meeting (Narrative Writing Redelivery - Day 2)

All middle and high school ELA teachers are invited to participate in the continuation of the redelivery of Scoring Institute for Georgia Milestones Narrative Writing. Participants are asked to bring a Chromebook.


Thursday, October 24th, 3:30 - 5:00pm

Werz

Middle Grades District ELA Meeting

All middle grade ELA teachers are invited to participate in this cross grade level meeting. Visiting presenter, Tracey Wiley, Education Outreach Specialist at GPB, will provide training on Writing Instruction. Participants are asked to bring a Chromebook..


Wednesday, October 30th, 3:30 - 5:00pm

West GA RESA, Grantville

Differentiation of Reading Tasks by Lexile Level

Participants will gain a deeper understanding of the role Lexile levels play in differentiated instruction. This session will provide the opportunity to examine the connection between Lexile level and text complexity in order to support instructional planning and the delivery of instruction. Register here.


Please review your Professional Learning Schedule for a complete list.



HIGH


Thursday, October 24th, 3:30 - 5:00pm

Werz

Elementary/Secondary District ELA Meeting

ELA teachers are invited to participate in this cross grade level meeting. Visiting presenter, Tracey Wiley, Education Outreach Specialist at GPB, will provide training on Writing Instruction. Participants are asked to bring a Chromebook.


Wednesday, October 30th, 3:30 - 5:00pm

West GA RESA, Grantville

Differentiation of Reading Tasks by Lexile Level

Participants will gain a deeper understanding of the role Lexile levels play in differentiated instruction. This session will provide the opportunity to examine the connection between Lexile level and text complexity in order to support instructional planning and the delivery of instruction. Register here.



Please review your Professional Learning Schedule. Dates are TBD based on submissions from your Department Chairs.

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Have you heard of "blank page syndrome?" This happens when students stare at a blank screen or paper. The cursor blinks, the pencil swings, or the pen twiddles without any words appearing on the page. Some research says that writing with fluency and volume is unnatural. Through the use of writing strategies, our objective will be to ease the stress of writing for our students.


Research based instructional strategies positively impact student learning. Each month check back for different writing strategies. When using any strategy, teachers should (1) ensure students understand why the strategy is useful, and (2) describe explicitly how the strategy could be used. Demonstrate, model , and follow-up with independent practice opportunities. Remember to share these writing strategies with your colleagues in other content areas. We are in this together!

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Show Don't Tell: Using Senses

Encourage students to imagine where the story is taking place. Have them to slow down and use their senses. What do they see? Hear? Feel? Smell? Add in sensory details. Remind students that the person who reads their work is NOT able to peer into the mind. We need to make sure and include enough detail to help them feel as if they are in the experience with us.


Strategy take from The Writing Strategies Book (Serravallo, J.)


Writing with the Five Senses

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Show, Don't Tell: Emotions

When you include feeling words in narrative writing ask "What does it look like?" Insert a phrase to describe the feeling, rather than telling the reader by using feeling words only. Show the results of character emotions through the character's actions. Show what fear or giddiness or anger does to him.


Prompt

Name the emotion. Describe what it looks like when someone feels that way.


Strategy take from The Writing Strategies Book (Serravallo, J.)

SEPTEMBER STRATEGIES

Transition Words

Word Mapping

Color Coding


AUGUST STRATEGIES

Making a List

Quick Writes

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Contact Dr. Paula Baker, ELA/Literacy Content Specialist with any questions, comments, or concerns.


Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world.

~Nelson Mandela


Nine-tenths of education is encouragement.

~Anatole France


The function of education is to teach one to think intensively and to think critically. Intelligence plus character - that is the goal of true education.

~Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.