Monday, July 28, 2014

Summer TURN Conference & K-12 Common Core Instructional Strategies

I’m working this week in Chicago, Illinois. They don’t call it the “Windy City” for nothing! As I walked out of the Chicago O’Hara airport, I felt the gust of wind. It was actually refreshing and whimsical. It is a beautiful city that I can’t wait to explore after my presentations at the Regional TURN Summer CCSS Conference. I am also looking forward to having a hot dog “Chicago style” at Wrigley Field. Tonight, the Cubs play against the Rockies. I came here over a decade ago but the Cubbies were out of town. I have never been inside the stadium. I can’t wait to see the old hand operated scoreboard. Here's something about me some don't know, I’m a baseball fanatic. I always cheer for my home team, the Dodgers, but love visiting vintage stadiums.

My presentation at the TURN Conference for today will be on K-12 Common Core Instructional Strategies. As I was planning this workshop, I knew that my time would be limited and that I needed to choose strategies that would best target the needs of my audience. There is only so much you can cover in seventy-five minutes. Hence, I am posting additional resources that will cover gaps or include more elaboration from today’s discussion.

Sentence Frames and Sentence Starters
Sentence Frames for Summary.doc    

A video from the Teaching Channel on how to structure writing with sentence frames.
2-minute video


Click HERE for a resource with Websites of Interest: Inquiry

Interactive Read Alouds
Visit a previous post on my blog on Read Alouds. In this previous post, I went into depth how to use various strategies during interactive read alouds in the classroom. Click HERE to take you there. 

Resources for the classroom that I discussed today: 

I use the Steps to Structuring an Academic Class Discussion to guide how I group the students. I also constantly focus on academic language development. All the lessons that I prepare always have a vocabulary component. You can look at some of the CCSS strategies I used in my collaborative presentation at CTA Good Teaching Conference, in Anaheim, California. Click on the following to view them: Literacy Strategies. These strategies were compiled by Norma Sanchez, from the California Teachers Association (CTA).
How can we get our students to have meaningful discussions?
  • Provide opportunities for extended discourse & engagement with academic registers
  • Develop meaningful collaborative tasks that allow students to use their full linguistic/cultural resources
  • Teach students strategies to engage in varied communicative modes

Strategies to Activate Knowledge

Strategies to Engage the Learner

Strategies to Strengthen Literacy

Culturally Responsive Teaching Instructional Strategies:

Think aloud - Teacher reads passages and models thought processes for students on how to ask themselves questions as they comprehend text. 
Reciprocal questioning - Teachers and students engage in shared reading, discussion, and questioning with the goal being to help students learn to ask questions of themselves about the meaning they are constructing as they read. 
Interdisciplinary units - Recommended that teachers include and connect content learning with language arts and culturally diverse literature. Topics drawn from children’s lives and interests (sometimes from curriculum) demonstrate how to make connections across the curriculum through culturally relevant literature. 
Scaffolding - Teacher explicitly demonstrates the difference between what students can accomplish independently and what they can accomplish with instructional support. 
Journal writing gives students opportunities to share their personal understandings regarding a range of literature in various cultural contexts that inform, clarify, explain, or educate them about culturally diverse societies. 
Character study journals permit students to make their own personal connections with a specific character as they read a story. 
Open-ended projects allow students to contribute at their varying levels of ability and explore a topic of interest drawn from their readings of culturally rich literature. Artifacts, including writings, poems, and/or letters, from students’ lives or culture can represent an ethnic or cultural group. 
Cross-cultural literature discussions groups - Students discuss quality fiction and nonfiction literature that authentically depicts members of diverse cultural groups. 
Character reading - Students form opinions about a specific issue or cultural concept put forward in the text or respond to a significant event that occurred during the character’s life. 


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