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All Language Arts curriculum taught at Mountainville Academy is research developed and backed to ensure its effectiveness in teaching skills that prepare students to study and master the finer points of the English language, including grammar, writing, spelling, and reading. We believe every student can learn if given the right tools. As part of this learning, we want to help every child be successful in literacy.
According to the 2001 report, Put Reading First: The Research Building Blocks for Teaching Children to Read which describes the findings of the National Reading Panel Report (2000), Teaching Children to Read, the building blocks of literacy are phonemic awareness, phonics, fluency, vocabulary, and text comprehension. To this end, you can expect to see the following literacy activities in your child’s classroom most every day:
- Read to Self: The best way to become a better reader is to practice each day, with books your student chooses on their just-right reading level. It soon becomes a habit.
- Read to Someone (Shared Reading): Reading to someone allows time to practice strategies, helping students work on fluency and expression, checking for understanding, hearing their own voice, and sharing in the learning community. This includes reading to both peers and teachers every day.
- Work on Writing: Just like reading, the best way to become a writer is to practice writing each day.
- Listen to Reading (Read Aloud): Students hear examples of good literature and fluent reading. They learn more words, thus expanding their vocabulary and becoming better readers.
- Spelling/Word Work: Correct spelling allows for fluent writing, thus speeding up the ability to write and get thinking down on paper. This is an essential foundation for writers.
We call this structure the DAILY 5.
Daily 5 Rubric
|Read to Self
Talks to neighbors, or just sits, no reading
|Some sitting, some reading if teacher is watching
||Reads the whole time, completes extra paper
|Read to Someone
||Talks to buddy, no reading
||Some reading, some talking or playing
||Reads most of the time, some talk about the book
||Reads the whole time, completes extra paper
||Plays with materials, very little practice
||Some practice, but could do better
||Practices words, uses some words in writing
||Practices words, applies learning to writing
||Talks or plays around
||Some time listening, some time playing
||Uses most of the time for listening
||Uses all of the time for listening, completes extra paper
|Work on Writing
||Very little writing
||Writes most of the time
||Writes whole time
||Doesn't participate or follow along while reading or with skill practice
||Reads book with some reminders; some participation or does all the talking (not letting others talk); practices skill with reminders
||Reads book; participates in discussion allowing others to talk; practices skill with group
||Participates in discussion, creates own questions related to story; uses skills learned in reading and writing
|Overall Score: _____ / 24
Elementary Literacy Rubric
||Student reads all of the familiar text smoothly and continuously. The student pays attention to punctuation marks, and understands how to break text up into meaningful groups of words.
||Student self-corrects, or does not make errors when reading familiar text.
||Student reads familiar text with appropriate changes in voice pitch/expression that reflect comprehension of the text and add dramatic emphasis to the text.
||Provides 3 or more details in a meaningful sequence that captures a main idea
||Student reads most of the familiar text smoothly and pays some attention to punctuation marks.
||Student makes occasional errors that do not affect the content of the text (e.g. mispronouncing character names)
||Student reads familiar text with appropriate changes in voice pitch/expression that reflect comprehension of the text
||Provides 3 or more details in a meaningful sequence
||Student reads familiar text either too quickly or with awkward pauses
||Student makes occasional errors that affect the content of the text (e.g. reads "can" for "car")
||Student reads familiar text with changes in voice pitch/expression that may not match the text meaning
||Provides 3 or more details
||Student reads familiar text with long extended pauses or by slowly sounding out each word
||Student makes frequent errors when reading familiar text and text appears to be above student's comfortable reading level
||Student reads familiar text in a monotone voice
||Provides 2 or fewer details
|Overall Score: _____ / 16
To support these researched-based activities, Mountainville uses the following curriculum and programs:
- The Common Core/Utah State Standards
- Core Knowledge
- Spalding: The Writing Road to Reading
- Shurley English - a research-based grammar program that uses multi-sensory techniques to teach the elements and structure of the English language in both verbal and written context. Students learn to identify and use nouns, pronouns, adjectives, verbs, adverbs, prepositions, etc. and apply what they have learned to construct sentences and write paragraphs and essays using proper morphology and grammar. The program provides concrete steps in sequential instruction and utilizes teacher-student interaction to achieve proven results with all students, even academically struggling/second language students. Assessment is built in to the program and old concepts are used continually with the introduction of new concepts to reinforce retention.
- Write Source - a research-proven writing program that helps students learn the writing process in a more in-depth manner. This program teaches the six traits of writing, which are: ideas, organization, voice, word choice, sentence fluency, and convention (editing). The Write Source breaks down the writing process into clear and organized instruction for students to be able to understand and create descriptive, narrative, expository, and persuasive pieces of writing as well as teaching them skills to be used for research writing, note taking, and oral presentations.
- Students are grouped according to ability for instruction in specific literacy skills and strategies.
- DIBELs fluency and comprehension benchmark assessments
- SCANTRON Performance Series Computer-Adaptive Diagnostic Assessments
- Fountas and Pinnell leveling A-Z
- Reading A-Z Program including Benchmark Assessments
- Students track their own progress in data folders in the docket (Leader in Me).