What parents need to know
A little bit about me, Amy Zimmermann
A bit about the course
Our syllabus explains more about the course. You can access it through this syllabus link. Some highlights include strategy instruction, achieving personal reading goals, building vocabulary and word knowledge, note-taking, increasing stamina, and writing to make sense of our reading.
What we've accomplished so far...
Individual student-teacher conferences to identify strengths and weaker areas with regard to reading and individual student reasons for being in the course.
Non-fiction/non-narrative texts: we have begun to look at the Question the Author strategy for reading non-fiction, non-narrative texts. Lessons included discussion on knowing when to stop reading and take stock of the author's meaning,recognizing confusions, identifying unfamiliar or difficult words, questioning what the author is saying, and identifying how parts of a text connect to other parts.
Vocabulary/Word Work: affixes, base or root word parts, assimilation, and ob/op prefix along with words in Unit 1. Our vocabulary program focuses on word roots as tools for unpacking unfamiliar words. Our vocab book is called Building Vocabulary from Word Roots by Tim Rasinski.
Where we are going next
Anticipated Topics of Study on the Horizon
Identifying text structure and using it for meaning
Reading novels: strategies for gaining deeper understanding of narrative writing
Note-taking options to increase comprehension and memory
Grammar: it's not just for writing anymore
Approaches to reading for standardized testing: taking charge of the ACT
Taking risks: experimenting with more complex texts
How you can help
- Encourage your child to read and chart that reading nightly (120 min. per week of a free choice reading book they can read easily on their own is required to build stamina, fluency, and overall knowledge).
- Get your child a gift certificate to a book store, or find second hand books that your child might enjoy. Also, encourage your child to visit the library and check out a book.
- Donate young adult books to our growing classroom library.
- Discuss articles in the paper, in magazines, or anywhere else you see print that your son or daughter might be interested in.
- Ask your child about what he/she is reading. Encourage him/her to bring "problem texts" in for us to discuss as a class.
- Share what you are reading with your child, and congratulate your child when he/she finishes a book.
- Ask your child what his/her million-word goal is and encourage him/her in achieving it.
- Let me know if you see anything of concern or if you have questions!