K-4 Language Arts Newsletter
Parent Information for Reading and Writing - Fall 2020
Reading - Stamina, Volume and Engagement Are Key!
On the days that your child is home, please encourage him/her to find a cozy spot to read, one that is free from distractions. Additionally, your child should be aware of his/her reading stamina. It can be helpful to set a timer and track stamina on a chart, so that your child builds awareness and takes ownership over growing his/her stamina.
There is no better way to grow as a reader than reading!
Track Your Stamina!
Try using a chart to build awareness of stamina and set goals to read longer and stronger!
Reflect on Stamina
How am I feeling today as a reader? What can I do to improve my stamina?
Find a Spot that Works Best!
Read in a spot that is comfortable, free from distractions and has everything you need to do your best reading.
Track Your Stamina!
Writing Support - Tips for Parents and Caregivers
Writing can often be challenging for elementary students, and this is to be expected! While reading involves information intake, writing involves output, and that can be difficult, especially in the unique structure of this school year..
Focus on PROCESS, not PRODUCT!
If your child can brainstorm ideas, plan out her story, and orally rehearse their writing, this is just as important as what she is able to actually compose.
Celebrate the writing process, not just a finished product!
Oral Rehearsal and Planning
Have your child say his story aloud - not just what he plans to write about, but the actual words he will write. Rehearse more than once.
TIP--You might even record this rehearsal, so that your child can replay the story as he writes, pausing the recording to write each sentence.
TIP--Plan across pages by sketching at the top of each page or writing a “key word” to remember the plan. Then, if your child returns to the piece the next day, he will remember what he had planned to write on each page.
For K-2 families, encourage invented (phonetic) spelling--
“stretch out the word to hear each of the sounds and write a letter for each sound.”
Focus on matching letters to sounds, not conventional spelling.
TIP: Personal Word Wall--If there are words your child asks how to spell repeatedly, you can add them to a blank word wall, which can include words just for your child!
Utilize a timer to try to write for 10 minutes, taking a break if needed. Then, build from there as appropriate for your child's age.
If your child is struggling on a particular day, consider substituting out the writing assignment for the day with a journal prompt or free writing, and be sure to contact his teacher regarding the need for additional support.
TIP: Encourage your child to track her own stamina using a timer and recording the number of minutes she was able to work on her writing piece, in order to encourage ownership and goal setting.
If writing is causing stress for you or your child, it’s time to stop and move on to the next activity.
Asynchronous vs. Synchronous Instruction
In addition, our hope is that, by providing asynchronous instruction and independent practice activities, students will be able to take breaks as needed throughout their day. This is a very unique learning situation for students, and we want to be sure that we support their social and emotional development, as well as their academic growth. Be sure that your child takes time to go outside each day, when possible. Brain breaks are important and key to helping your child to be available for learning!