First, Stewart Riddle talks about literacy in the classroom, then Misty Adoniou discusses phonics and literacy, and the mandatory year 1 phonics assessment.
An effective, documented school reading program, using the Teaching for Effective Learning framework and other key Department for Education (SA) supporting documents for pedagogical guidance, will help a teacher cover all aspects of the Australian Curriculum, and will also help teachers to meet state requirements.
A reading program should rely on well founded, tried and true principles of learning that provide the basis for classroom practices. (Boomer, 1983)
It will ensure that students have daily experiences that develop them as the most effective readers, but will also connect to other aspects of literacy and other learning areas.
Habits and routines that are developed and fostered within what we call a ‘Reading Workshop’, give all students the chance to transfer the explicit teachings that are the focus of each lesson to their own independent reading. This is the ultimate goal of a successful reading program.
A school reading program should make use of the most innovative research and practice that has proven to be effective in a classroom. A school should not rely on purchased programs because they are not likely to meet Australian and state requirements and cater for the specific needs of a school’s student population.
Sharon Callen is an experienced teacher, author and literacy consultant. She has worked in schools in Australia and the USA helping improve literacy learning by explicitly modelling in classrooms and guiding leadership.
Phil Callen is a former Executive Director of the Council of Education Associations of SA and Secretary of the Australian Professional Teachers Association.
They both are principal consultants with Cue Learning, an education consultancy which provides highly practical, research based professional development for teachers and leaders in schools.