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Chapter 7 : 

Chapter 7 The Startling State of Literacy Education

Slide 3: 

What is authentic literacy?

Slide 4: 

What do we know about the nature of most reading assignments and class discussions? Are they typically lower-order, focused on facts and recall; or higher-order, focused on interpretive, open-ended discussions?

Slide 5: 

Should students receive clear, detailed instruction—entire lessons—on each respective element of a writing rubric? Isn’t repeated teacher modeling accompanied by exemplars of good written work essential to understanding the criteria of good writing? Shouldn’t students be taught to evaluate their own written work with these rubrics?

Slide 6: 

How routinely do purposeful reading and interpretive modeling or “think-alouds,” and frequent writing instruction focusing on only one criterion in a scoring guide actually occur in the average classroom?

The View from Hundreds of Classrooms : 

The View from Hundreds of Classrooms According to Mike Schmoker and other researchers, what was seen in language arts classrooms across the United States was deeply unsettling. In most every classroom visited, most students were engaged in activities that had nothing to do with literacy: no writing instruction, no modeling using the elements of a writing rubric, and no use of writing exemplars.

What was seen? : 

What was seen? Staggering Amounts of Coloring “The Crayola Curriculum”

Slide 9: 

The drift from authentic reading, writing, and talking starts in the earliest grades. Mike Schmoker

--Lucy McCormick Calkins : 

--Lucy McCormick Calkins “…the truth is that many children read for a remarkably small percentage of the school day…children sometimes spend two and one half hours a day in reading instruction and only ten minutes of that time actually reading.” (Calkins, Montgomery, & Santam, 1998)

Ruth Mitchell : 

Ruth Mitchell High school students seldom read or write. * Only 1 of 8 assignments was at grade level. * Only 1 of 40 classrooms had appropriate literacy education occurring.

--George Hillocks(1987 Study) : 

--George Hillocks(1987 Study) Teachers spent an average of only three minutes explaining an assignment before cutting kids loose to write.

--Mike Schmoker : 

--Mike Schmoker Simple, immediate actions could make an astonishing difference in the quality of our schools. Improvements in these two areas would be felt profoundly in every subject where students benefit from being good thinkers, readers, and writers.

--Richard Allington : 

--Richard Allington (Most respected critic of literacy education) High achieving classrooms spend as much as 70 percent of class time reading or responding to what they read.

What Is Recommended? : 

What Is Recommended? Allington recommends that flexible standards be established: about 60 minutes per day of purposeful reading and 40 minutes per day of purposeful writing. That means largely converting current amounts of time from “stuff” to literacy activities that are meaningful.

Slide 16: 

Schmoker reinforces Allington’s assertion that we need to teach students the most worthy reading skills—those that require judgments about information, ideas, and assertions. Allington (2001) further points out that reading and writing activities must have an emphasis on interpretation, argument, and analysis.

Slide 17: 

Allington also says that teachers must model and demonstrate useful reading strategies in how to read for meaning. Schmoker calls it strategic reading. Many other researchers state that meaningful text-based intellectual exchange is crucial to literacy and critical reasoning.

Slide 18: 

Schmoker concludes: “If we desire better schools, then our use of time must match our priorities.” Allington states: “…time is so inefficiently organized that we can readily locate another 30 to 50 minutes every day for reading and writing activity.”

Slide 19: 

Schmoker also states:. “It is time for schools to look harder at state assessment results in the ‘exceeds’ category which is a better indicator of authentic literacy and is an area where far fewer students make the grade.”

So… : 

So… What will you expect to see in the next walkthrough when you check on literacy education in your language arts or reading classrooms?

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