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“THE GREATEST GIFT IS A PASSION FOR READING.”
- ELIZABETH HARDWICK
BY: BRITTANY HAMMICK
PROFESSOR: DR. PHYLLIS P. MCCULLY
EDUC 6706: THE BEGINNING READER, PREK–3
CREATING A LITERACY ENVIRONMENT
• Utilizing a balanced literacy approach with
researched based practices
• Assessing students’ interests and academic levels to
determine appropriate literacy texts and activities
• Texts are selected, taking into consideration to the
literacy matrix, and meets the needs of diverse
• Utilizing the interactive, critical, and responsive
perspectives within the framework
• Gaining feedback from colleagues to ensure
GETTING TO KNOW LITERACY
• Assessment is essential for determining students’ literacy
• Utilizing non-cognitive and cognitive assessments within
the classroom provides valuable insights into my students
academic skills, interests, and cultural backgrounds
(Afflerbach, 2007). This information is used to guide my
instructions and adjust my lessons to meet all my
a teacher tries to teach something to the entire class at the
same time, chances are, 1/3 of the kids already know it, 1/3 will get it,
while 1/3 won’t” (Warren, 2013).
• Kindergarten students enter school on all different levels.
Assessments allows me to differentiate my instructions and
provide small group instruction to facilitate student literacy
• Motivation: “Successful readers are motivated,
have a positive attitude, possess a good selfconcept, and are capable of making accurate
attributions for their performances” (Afflerbach,
2007, pg. 175).
• Teachers are focusing too much on phonics,
phonemic awareness, fluency, vocabulary, high
frequency words, and comprehension and less on
students’ motivation and interests.
• I had my students bring in a bag of items that were
important to them. Knowing their interests allows me
to choose books that they will enjoy.
DETERMINING MY STUDENTS’
STRENGTHS AND WEAKNESSES
“MONITORING PROGRESS IS VITAL TO STUDENT SUCCESS” (TOMPKINS,
• Our school wide data tracking assessment, iready was
used to assess my students’ development of vocabulary,
word recognition, phonemic awareness, and
• Students track their data and my instruction is data
• Student A: second grade level for phonological
awareness, phonics, high frequency words,
comprehension. Third grade level for vocabulary and
comprehension. Lexile is 525L
• Student B: Late kindergarten level for phonics and
vocabulary. First grade level for phonological awareness
and comprehension. Beginning of kindergarten level for
high frequency words. Lexils is BR
• Student C: Scored below grade level on all parts. Put on
RTI. Further assessments will monitor growth.
USING THE DATA TO SUPPORT MY
Student A: Results shows that he is ready to decode word with
three and four syllables, as well as learn prefixes and suffixes
Student B: Results indicate that she understands grade level
read alouds. She will benefit from practice in isolating
initial, medial, and final souds and in blending sounds to form
words. She will also benefit from practice with short vowel in
CVC words. She needs extra help with words with multiple
Student C: Results show a slow start in learning to match letters
to sounds. She will benefit from practice in identifying
rhyme, counting syllables, and identifying initial sounds.
• Douglas Hatman suggests that teachers select text based on the needs of
students and have a balance of narrative and informational text (Laureate
• There are many factors to consider when choosing texts in
relation to your students:
- interest in the context to get them engaged
-support given by illustrations
• Texts that are too easy or too difficult will not be beneficial to the reader; must
match the student’s reading level. Tompkins (2010) states that teacher must
select books that students can read to supports independent reading and
their use of reading strategies being taught.
SELECTING TEXTS USING A LITERACY
(Many words with not
(picture books with not many words)
o Connecting informational texts with fictional texts helps my
students develop understanding of the topic.
o Integrating online texts supports 21st century literacy skills
o Dr Neuman states, “In the kindergarten classroom on average
only 3.2 minutes a week are spent reading informational text, this
must change” (Laureate Education, 2010a).
TEXTS IN MY LESSON ON HIBERNATION
• Bear Snores On by Karma Wilson (between narrative and semiotic)
• Every Autumn Comes a Bear By Jim Arnosky (between
informational and semiotic)
• National Geographic website: website
refeature/brown-bear/, (between informational and semiotic)
• Why Do Bears Sleep All Winter? A Book about
Hibernation by Jane Duden (between linguistic and informational)
• How Weather Affects Us- Treasures reading series (between
linguistic and narrative)
• Hibernation Station (between narrative and semiotic)
• The Mitten (between narrative and semiotic)
• Interactive perspective teaches students how to
read and be strategic processors and thinkers
(Laureate Education, 2010).
• The goal is to promote students’ metacognition
(thinking about thinking). During reading, students
must ask questions to repair understanding or just to
find out more.
• Activities in lessons must build their schema.
• Strategic processing is threaded through five pieces
(Laureate Education, 2010)
2. phonemic awareness
Interactive perspective teaches students how to read
and be strategic processors and thinkers (Laureate
I began my lesson with a prior knowledge discussion on what students know
about winter and how we prepare for the cold. I drew a person on the board
and we added articles of clothing. This connection to their world was an
introduction to our lesson, how animals prepare for winter. I showed the cover of
the book “Hibernation Station” and students turned and faced their partners
and brainstormed if they slept all winter. I introduced the vocabulary word and
have my students listen to my reading to make meaning of the word. We
stopped throughout to add to our list of what animals to do prepare. Next, I
introduced an informational text and did a picture walk, reading the captions to
answer the title. Then students broke into centers, based on their levels
Student A: (above level) went on the National Geographic website and wrote
down facts, Mr. Bear interactive pocket chart poem
Student B: (on level): Wrote “I would hibernate” “I would not…”
Student C: (Below level): Made a cave out of a cardboard box and a small bear
cutout and wrote the vocabulary word, sing a song to reinforce the meaning.
Next, I read the Mitten and the students acted out the story into a sheet
(pretend cave) with pictures of the animals on a headband. This activity built
their experiences and background knowledge.
CRITICAL AND RESPONSE PERSPECTIVE
Can prepare students to think critically and become a
contributing member of society, and respect other individuals.
Texts must provide opportunity for students to judge, evaluate,
and think critically.
By encouraging students to think critically, I am giving my
students to opportunity to gain an understanding of perspectives
outside their own and become more empathetic to others.
Components (Laureate Education, 2010):
1. examine a text from multiple perspectives
2. critically evaluate text
3. Judge validity of the text
4. understand the author’s purpose
5. think deeply about a text
Learning occurs when students are given opportunities to share
their feelings and emotions about text they have read (Laureate
Education, 2010). I use text connections often in my lessons.
I began my lesson with a review on “hibernation” by doing
a cloze activity. Students filled in the missing letters to
complete the message. I then introduced the groundhog
and to reinforce the word “shadow” and set a foundation
for learning we went outside to look at our shadows. I read
an informational book and we discussed that the reason
the author wrote it was to teach us about the groundhog
so we wrote facts we learned. I had my students make a
prediction, practiced with the vocabulary, and answered
comprehension questions. Next, I introduced a multiple
perspective book about a groundhog who wants a day
off. I had my students make a text-to-self connection
about a day they felt they did not want to anything.
Reading this book helps my students understand and
empathize with someone else’s struggles.
Afflerbach, P. (2007). Understanding and using reading assessment, k-12. Newark, DE:
International Reading Association.
Arnosky, J. (1996). Every autumn comes the bear. New York, NY. Putnam & Grosset Group.
Duden, J. (2006). Why do bears sleep all winter?: A book about hibernation. Capstone Press.
Laureate Education, Inc. (Executive Producer). (2011b).Strategic Processing. [Video webcast]. Retrieved
Laureate Education, Inc. (Executive Producer). (2011a). Critical Perspective [Video
webcast]. Retrieved from http://www.courseurl.com
Melford, M., R. Toft, K. Nigge, and P. Nicklen. "Brown Bears." National Geographic. Retrieved
26 January 2014.Retrieved at
Tompkins, G.E. (2010). Literacy for the 21st century: A balance approach (5th ed.). Boston: Allyn
Treasures (2006). How weather affects us: Bear snores on. New York, NY. Macmillan/ McGraw- Hill
Warren, L. (2013). Using assessment results in guide and differentiate instruction. Retrieved at
Wilson, K. (2005). Bear snores on. New York, NY: Simon & Schuster.