Reading Continuum

Send by email

Literacy Statement

An effective literacy program offers a balance of challenge and support while building children’s confidence in their emerging abilities as readers and writers.  Our goal is to develop fluent, capable readers who enjoy the process and learn from it, drawing from a diverse array of literature.  Helping students become writers who can express their ideas cogently, clearly, and creatively is another important goal.  We view reading and writing as a developmental process and understand that a child’s progress is seldom even or linear. It is common, for example, that a student’s leap ahead in learning is followed by a consolidating phase or an apparent plateau. We also find that students cannot be easily placed in a single category along the learning continuum. As such, our instruction is guided by regular formal and informal reading assessments.

While no two developmental journeys are identical, students often exhibit a range of skills and understandings. The following reading/writing continuum describes the basic path to literacy in the Beginning and Lower Schools.

 

Curriculum Map

Unit Essential Questions Habits Of Mind Content Skills and Processes Assessment Resources Multicultural Dimension Integrated Learning
Preconventional (ages 3-5)

• What do those symbols mean?
• What do those pictures mean?
• How do the pictures and symbols work together?
•How do the sounds in language work?
•How do I gain enjoyment through being read to?

*Print carries meaning
*Pictures carry meaning
*Pictures and symbols work together to convey meaning
*Language is made up of parts

Emergent (ages 4-6)

• Why do I want to learn to read?
• What will I find out if I read?
• What do I need to know so I can learn to read?
• How do I know what sounds go with which symbols?
• How do I recognize the patterns in print so I can read new things?
• What words do I need to learn that I see over and over again?
• What is a word?
• What do the spaces between words mean?
• Where on the page do I begin to read?
• How do I combine sounds to understand printed words?
• How do words and illustrations work together?
• How do I gain enjoyment through reading?
• How do I gain enjoyment through being read to?

*Print conveys meaning
*Print stays the same through repeated readings
*Print is the saving of oral information
*Ideas are communicated and preserved in print
*There are sound - symbol relationships
*There are sound - symbol combinations and patterns
*A word is a string of sounds in sequence
*Spaces separate words
*There are certain repetitive words to remember

Beginning (ages 5-7)

• How do I become an independent reader?
• When I don't know a word, what do I do?
• What patterns can I find in books?
• How can I compare stories to my own experiences?
• What are the various parts of a book and how do they help me?
• How do I gain enjoyment through reading?
• How do I gain enjoyment through being read to?

*Relies heavily on beginning letters and sounding out for word identification
*Reads on her own for short periods of time
*Chooses their own reading materials, with guidance
*Uses context clues, illustrations, and phonics skills to figure out the meaning of words
*Identifies simple patterns, such as a main idea and a beginning, middle, and end
*Recognizes that books can be shared and talked about with others
*Identifies the title and author of each book
*Books are written for the enjoyment of an audience
*Relies heavily on beginning letters and sounding out for word identification (graphophonic strategy)

Developing (ages 6-8)

• What are the different genres?
• What are the various reading strategies?
• How do I discuss and question what I read?
• What is the author's perspective?
• How do I make and share experiences and connections related to what I read?
• How do I gain enjoyment through reading?
•How do I gain enjoyment through being read to?

*Reads unfamiliar texts slowly and deliberately as they focus on reading exactly what is on the page
*Reads familiar texts confidently and can retell major content from visual and printed texts, such as: language experience recounts, shared books, simple informational texts
*Identifies and talk about a range of different text forms, such as: letters, lists, recipes, stories, newspaper and magazine articles
*Demonstrates understanding that all texts, both narrative and informational, are written by authors who are expressing their own ideas
*Focuses on decoding when reading unfamiliar texts. May read word-by-word or line-by-line, thus compromising fluency and comprehension
*Uses pictures as cues and knowledge of context to check meaning
*Has a bank of words which are recognized when encountered in different contexts, such as: in a book, on the board, in the environment or on a chart

Expanding (ages 7-9)

• How do I respond critically to what we read?
• How do I use various reading strategies to comprehend different genres?
• How do I choose texts at my own reading level?
•How do I gain enjoyment through reading?
•How do I gain enjoyment through being read to?

*Shows an ability to construct meaning by integrating knowledge of:
-text structure (such as: letter, narrative, report, recount, procedure)
-text organization: (such as: paragraphs, chapters, introduction, conclusion, contents, page, index)
-language features (such as: descriptive language connectives such as because, therefore, if...then)
-subject specific language (such as: the language of reporting in science and the language of a journalistic report)
*Can retell and discuss texts by providing information relating to plot and character, including a main idea and supporting details
*Recognizes generalizations in texts, such as: a mother looking after her children at home, a prince rescuing a maiden from her evil stepmother, and discusses their implications
*Selects appropriate material and adjusts reading strategies for different texts and different purposes, such as: skimming to locate specific information
*Is becoming efficient in the use of the following word identification strategies for constructing meaning:
-sounds-out to decode words
-uses initial letters as a cue to decoding
-uses known parts of words to make sense of the whole word
-uses blending to decode words

Bridging (ages 8-11)

• Is reading purposeful and automatic?
• How do I gain enjoyment through reading?
• How do I gain enjoyment through being read to?

*Is becoming efficient in using most of the following strategies for constructing meaning:
-makes predictions and is able to substantiate them
-self-corrects when reading
-re-reads to clarify meaning
-reads-on when encountering a difficult text
-slows down when reading difficult texts
-substitutes familiar words
-uses knowledge of print conventions
*Makes meaningful substitutions, such as: when reading cool drink, they read cold drink
*Can discuss and examine the purposes of different text structures, such as: reports, procedures, biographies, narratives, advertisements, and documentaries
*Has an increasing bank of sight words, including some difficult and subject-specific words, such as: immigration, experiment, colonial, indentured
*Is becoming efficient in the use of the following word identification strategies for constructing meaning:
*Uses knowledge of common letter patterns to decode words, such as: tion, scious, ough
*Uses prefixes, suffixes, and syllabification to understand the meaning of words

Fluent (ages 9-12)

• How do I make critical comparisons between texts?
• How does perspective impact the interpretation of text?
• How can I challenge texts, drawing on evidence from my own experiences?
• How do I gain enjoyment through reading?
• How do I gain enjoyment through being read to?

*Uses a range of strategies automatically when constructing meaning from text:
-self-corrects
-re-reads
-slows down
*Reads and comprehends text that is abstract and removed from personal experience
*Makes inferences based on implicit information drawn from a text and can provide justification for these inferences
*Returns purposefully to make connections between widely separated sections of a text
*Uses word identification strategies appropriately and automatically when encountering an unknown word:
-knowledge of sound-symbol relationships
-knowledge of word patterns
-knowledge of word derivations, prefixes, suffixes and syllabification