We’ve had the pleasure of having a visiting literacy consultant, Cailin Minor, at AISA this week. Cailin has worked with teachers, students, teaching assistants, our literacy coach, Lisa Emanuel, and the administrative team on ways to best use our Readers and Writers Workshop curriculum to support student’s literacy growth.
In the elementary school, Caillin has talked about “researching” students’ strengths and needs by evaluating their writing, and then described how to take that data to form small-groups to move writers forward. Teachers spent time analyzing student writing to create individualized opportunities to build specific skills.
With middle school students, Cailin’s focus has been on teaching students to push their thinking about character development through the use of developmentally appropriate strategies. She has focused on using individual student conferences to target instruction and on coaching teachers to lean in to small group sessions to push students through their reliance on the most comfortable reading tendencies.
In both divisions, Cailin has modeled processes for teachers and worked with Lisa to build opportunities for teachers to try these processes out with small groups of students. I am confident that this work will make a positive impact on your child’s learning!
Calin also hosted two parent sessions on Wednesday and Thursday afternoon. Thanks to those of you who were able to make it. Her big takeaways from these sessions include:
Readers develop when they read lots and lots and lots - at home and at school.
How students feel about reading has an impact on their achievement.
When your child reads at home, have it be about enjoyment and at a developmentally appropriate level.
Reading is thinking.
Writer’s develop along a progress. They begin with approximation.
Celebrate your children’s ideas - writing is about communicating meaning.
Encourage authentic types of writing at home (grocery lists, reminders, birthday notes, etc.)
Bring writing from school into the home for enjoyment!