Links to Literacy


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HSSD Literacy Professional Learning Bright Spots

Here are some take aways from part one of the professional learning course from February's early release:

  • Consistency and improvement in writing
  • Continued focus on and renewed emphasis balanced literacy
  • Validation of good teaching practices that we may have moved away from
  • Powerful discussion across the district

"I am working on integrating literacy into my social studies class by implementing aspects of the balanced literacy framework. I incorporate read alouds, shared reading, and independent reading into the content area. I also use the GRR model when teaching math and writing. The students really benefit from seeing the skills modeled and then being given the time to practice collaboratively and independently." ~6-8 Discussion Board

"It focuses my instruction and fosters a classroom of writers." ~3-5 Discussion Board

"It has been a good reminder for me to model more and make sure that I am truly capturing all aspects of Balanced Literacy frequently in my instruction. It has also allowed me to spend more time reflecting upon my instruction to build stronger universal and guided instruction, as well as interventions." ~ K-2 Discussion Board

"I have amassed more books for my classroom library, including contributions from students. This has promoted discussion of books/reading materials among students and encouraged them to approach reading with a positive mentality." ~9-12 Discussion Board

"I feel that literacy is really the basis of everything we are doing at school. I like the balanced literacy model because it provides for a variety of learning opportunities. I do feel it is very important to give my students time to read books of their choosing for enjoyment. I also like that we are focusing on literacy in all areas because it gives students the chance to see how important reading really is and how much we use it in our daily lives. . . ." ~K-2 Discussion Board

Thank you for your time and thoughtful responses. The K-12 discussion is still on-going. You may find it beneficial to read about the great things happening in our schools, learn from your colleagues, and engage in discussions by revisiting the boards.

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Take Charge of your Learning

Join us for HSSD Foundations of Literacy! Read below for more information.

Upcoming Professional Learning:

Week of June 13 or August 15 (2 follow up evenings during the school year TBD)

Audience Focus K-8 ELA (7-8 Content Area) Teachers, Special Education Teachers, ELL Teachers

Participants will gain an understanding of the HSSD literacy vision and mission supported by foundational information and practical applications for district literacy instruction. Attendees will review the ELA Common Core State Standards and investigate best practices in comprehensive literacy. They will dive deeper into the informal and formal assessment methods used in the Howard-Suamico School District and learn how to use standards and assessment to plan instruction. In addition, participants will learn the essential components of the HSSD literacy plan, as well as receive an introduction to the planning and instructional formats articulated in the literacy plan (i.e.: Universal Design for Learning, Gradual Release of Responsibility, Balanced Literacy Framework, Writer's Workshop) for improving student achievement in an English Language Arts literacy block.

**These courses will be offered for credit (min. 8 participants).

  • The course will meet face to face on Monday and Wednesday. Tuesday and Thursday is online. Friday is optional for one-on-one coaching appointments.
  • Please note there will be two follow up dates that will occur during the school year. Plan to attend these dates as well.
  • Sign up in MyLearningPlan to reserve your spot.
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Moving Forward with the Units of Study

2016-2017 Expectations

Classrooms will continue to utilize the writer’s workshop structure

  • follow the mini-lesson format
  • mid-workshop teaching point and share
Continue to administer on-demand writing
  • before and after each unit
  • score using Units of Study rubrics
  • use information to drive instruction and form small groups
Teach each spiral in the units of study at least once

Develop and refine conferring

  • student checklist
  • goal setting

Contact Your Literacy Coaches

Have a question related to literacy?

Email your district literacy team:


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