Friday, April 12, 2013
Reading Strategies - Adding some Pedagogy to Theory
Creating standards isn't all that hard. We can spend an endless amount of time saying that we'd either like students to know the pieces of content and/or mastering a number skills. We can set heroic, "No more time to wait" timelines to show that we understand the need for all of our students to reached that famed sense of readiness for "College, Career and Citizenship." There's more to it, though.
Whenever I've had the opportunity to speak with faculties about students' needs, before or since the CCSS push, it's clear that literacy has been an issue for students. Literacy in the content areas was well on the path to becoming an annoying buzz word before "the Common Core" became the focus of most conversations. This need hasn't changed, but an increasing amount of professionals are now realizing the truth that literacy and content have to be entwined. We can't process information without strengths in receptive and expressive literacies and more than we can ignore the need to have a grasp of content knowledge.
Enter: "what now"? How is a teacher who hasn't been trained in processing reading skills going to help students access information? If (s)he has been accustomed to having students learn through other processes (listening, viewing, discussing, labs, etc), what will they do when asked to use texts as teaching tools, when students are required to be reading to learn?
If it all works well, the heading on this page will link you to a list of strategies that I'm going to work through with my departments. Because it's so universally applicable - and part of Danielson's Framework for Teaching - everyone is going to include a variety of questioning strategies into their classes. On top that, though, our plan is to start in grade levels, choosing one strategy at a time to work on and share experiences.