Literacy Solutions Blog

The Kids’ Book Club

Tuesday, 17 February 2015 at 9:29 am

As a Rotarian, I have become aware of a wonderful initiative that is making it possible for disadvantaged children to be exposed to good quality literature. It is called ‘The Kids’ Book Club’. This initiative is responsible for children under eight years old receiving a good quality picture book each month.

We all know how important it is for children to be exposed to good quality …

Reflective Practice Reaches New Heights!

Monday, 1 September 2014 at 7:41 pm

I was fortunate enough to be working with some amazing educators and students at Jamboree Heights State School last term. I began by delivering demonstration Guided Reading lessons to all year levels. Many of the teachers then volunteered to teach a Guided Reading lesson, giving me the privilege of coaching them. Whilst these teachers did not believe they had all the answers, they enjoyed an open culture where …

Seven Ways to Engage Teachers’ Aides Wisely in the Classroom

Tuesday, 15 July 2014 at 10:47 am

When I began teaching in NSW primary schools many years ago, teacher aides were almost non-existent. Now they are an integral part of most classrooms.

The big question is how can teacher aides best support the learners in any given classroom?

We need to address this issue by way of asking a question… If choosing between the teacher and the teacher aide, who spends the majority of …

Shared Reading

Monday, 3 February 2014 at 8:58 am

Shared Reading is a valuable approach for teaching reading skills, strategies and knowledge. Most classrooms feature shared reading lessons, but does this guarantee explicit teaching occurs. Many teaching resources support teachers to facilitate reading instruction, but effective practitioners shift between reading approaches most of the day, delivering explicit reading instruction across subject areas and incorporating a broad range of text types. Literacy instruction, where ever …

The Benefits of Difficult Texts for Young Readers

Tuesday, 8 October 2013 at 9:58 am

Take advantage of more difficult texts in English and across the curriculum. We know that frequent, short bursts of explicit instruction produce powerful outcomes. We also know that students’ literacy skills and knowledge underpin the synthesis of new content across other key learning areas. Add to this, that the bulk of the texts students will be required to read, respond to and craft in secondary …

Structured Reading

Sunday, 14 July 2013 at 12:13 pm

Many Teachers use components of Shared and Guided Reading as an approach to intervention. This strategy is a form of structured reading and can produce positive outcomes for students struggling with standard classroom teaching methods.

Structured Reading is a teaching approach for educators working with individuals or small groups of students. The approach blends shared reading and guided reading and also features some aspects of …

Teaching for Inferring

Sunday, 24 February 2013 at 8:23 pm

Aiden and his older brother, Jack, sit together to eat. Aiden lifts his banana, it slides from his fingers and drops to the concrete. Jack quickly comments, “Better eat that now; don’t save it for later.”

“Why?” asks Aiden.
“The bruise will make it go brown and squishy. Then it won’t be as good to eat.”
“How do you know?” enquires Aiden.
“I’ve dropped apples before. Trust me.”

Why does …

The Literacy Block – 10 FAQs

Tuesday, 14 August 2012 at 4:40 pm

The classroom literacy program, sometimes referred to as the Literacy Block enables teachers to timetable for explicit teaching across reading, writing, speaking and listening, accompanied by differentiated learning, the independent application of skills and knowledge and a time to reflect or share.

In reading, approaches commonly used for explicit instruction include modelled reading and shared reading. These lessons may run for 15-20 minutes, with mini-lessons …

The Literacy Block

Saturday, 7 July 2012 at 3:47 pm

A literacy block should provide a balanced program of literacy instruction including the following teaching/learning approaches to support reading and writing.

Essential Reading Components:
Modelled Reading

occurs when an expert reader reads a difficult text to less experienced readers, enabling the experienced reader to model how effective readers sound, solve and think about texts when reading
The “think aloud” strategy is used strategically by the expert reader to model …

Reading Stamina

Monday, 7 May 2012 at 6:53 pm

A limiting factor in the development of reading skills in students and an impediment to classroom management for teachers is the ability of children to read independently for significant periods of time. A valuable strategy to deal with both issues is increasing reading stamina.

Building reading stamina supports students to read for an extended time, trains muscle memory and supports an increased attention.

Teaching a procedure for …