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Struggling Readers 3 rd Grade and Up Darlene Bleier Katie Caldwell Jackie Mascara Yvette Wilder.

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Presentation on theme: "Struggling Readers 3 rd Grade and Up Darlene Bleier Katie Caldwell Jackie Mascara Yvette Wilder."— Presentation transcript:

1 Struggling Readers 3 rd Grade and Up Darlene Bleier Katie Caldwell Jackie Mascara Yvette Wilder

2 FACT: More than eight million students in grades 4-12 read below grade level according to the National Center for Education Statistics in Only 31% of America’s eighth grade students – and roughly the same percentage of twelfth graders – meet the National Assessment of Educational Progress standard of reading “proficiency” for their grade level. (NCES, 2005, 2003)

3 Through this presentation… You will be able to identify: Characteristics of a Struggling Reader Interventions Resources

4 FACT: If students are to be truly prepared for college, work, and citizenship, they cannot settle for a modest level of proficiency in reading and writing. Content area literacy instruction must be a cornerstone of any movement to build high- quality secondary schools.

5 According to The Alliance for Excellent Education: Without ongoing literacy instruction, students who are behind in reading when they enter the middle grades likely will never catch up. Even college-bound students often struggle with more advanced literacy skills.

6 Some Considerations Associated with Struggling Readers There are many factors related to reading difficulties, but are not necessarily causes. The most common include: Environmental factors (home and school) Social factors Emotional factors Physical factors Cultural factors

7 Environmental Factors: Home Language development is greatly influenced by the child’s home experience with a parent (National Reading Panel, 2000) Studies that compare good and poor readers show that “good readers are more likely to have favorable home environments” (Abrams and Kaslow, 1987; Hart & Risley, 1995; 2002; Whitman, 2000)

8 Home Continued A “favorable” home environment typically has: – Sufficient bonding with a parent or parent figure in infancy years – Safety (low-risk environment) – physical and emotional – Intellectual stimulation – through books and conversation – General emotional health and encouragement of a good self concept (someone they can count on)

9 Environmental Factors: School Gender differentiations Remedial stigma (high performing students tend to “shun” lower performing students (Wong & Donahue, 2002) Inadequate or inappropriate diagnosis and instruction School district provisions

10 Social Factors Relationships with peers Relationships with authority figures Confidence and participation – some innate, extrinsic

11 Emotional Factors Anxiety Depression Hostile-aggressive behavior Learned helplessness Learning Block Low self-esteem

12 Physical Factors Hearing loss Visual impairment Neurological dysfunction

13 Cultural Factors As of 2002, nearly 17% of all children in this country were considered at poverty level Language barriers (ELL) Impaired oral and written language development

14 A Day in the Life of a Struggling Reader Imagine you were required to speak Italian, Arabic, and Russian in the morning, followed by French, Swahili, and Spanish in the afternoon. For struggling adolescent readers, that’s what it seems like to move from one subject to the next. From math to English to history to science to civics, each content area has its own vocabulary, textual formats, stylistic conventions, and ways of understanding, analyzing, interpreting, and responding to words on the page. Alliance for Excellent Education (2006). Reading and Writing in the Academic Content Areas. Issue Brief.

15 In groups of four… Picture a science class of twenty-five students from very diverse backgrounds- different social classes, different ethnicities, and varying achievement levels. Many of the students struggle with text materials. Describe some classroom strategies you might use to respond to struggling readers while maintaining high standards of content learning.

16 What does a child experiencing reading difficulty look like?

17 Profiles of Students Experiencing Reading Difficulty Let’s review what struggling readers look like at each grade level. Remember… – Students don’t suddenly struggle once they reach third grade. – They have often been struggling since the primary grades.

18 Kindergarten Miscalls or confuses letter names Cannot “get” letter-sound correspondences Invented spelling is indecipherable Can comprehend texts read aloud, but tends to avoid reading independently Showing signs of avoidance and frustration Concepts about print very limited

19 First Grade Recognizes letter names in isolation, but still cannot “get” letter-sound correspondences Has memorized some sight words, but unable to apply decoding skills Attempts to sound out words but cannot blend sounds Guesses randomly at unknown words or relies on pictures Uses first letter decoding skills Comprehension texts read aloud – but reluctant to read independently Fluency very poor – reading is belabored and slow with frequent errors Writing is immature; invented spelling resembles that of a Kindergartener’s

20 Second - Third Grade Inability to “keep up” is more noticeable Poor decoding skills; fluency is poor and not grade appropriate Has memorized lots of words but cannot decode unknown ones Signs of frustration and avoidance of independent reading more apparent Comprehension and vocabulary knowledge starting to skip – even when being read to Writing lacks appropriate elaboration, contains many spelling and conventions errors, and vocabulary knowledge and usage is poor

21 Intermediate Grades Decoding and fluency poor: students tend to hide when having to read aloud and/or make numerous errors – sometimes unknown to the student Comprehension is to some degree compensated for – but is superficial at best; student demonstrates difficulty remembering and articulating major text ideas Writing is constrained and often brief and undeveloped; little evidence of elaboration or interest in writing Rarely reads independently; selects “easy” books or expository books for pictures more than for content

22 Middle and High School Grades Does not complete text-book assignments or needs a great deal of time and support Rarely reads and does not write well Still showing difficulty with decoding and fluency – miscalls a lot of words when reading aloud Comprehension and interpretation of text is superficial and often wrong Behavior manifestations of frustration and embarrassment Vocabulary repertoire is poor and resembles that of an elementary grade student Little knowledge of authors and genre

23 Other Characteristics of Struggling Readers in Middle and High School: They sometimes have not mastered basic knowledge and strategies required for decoding unfamiliar words They are almost always less fluent readers—their sight word vocabularies many thousands of words smaller than average readers Usually know the meanings of fewer words Usually have less conceptual/factual knowledge Are almost always less skilled in using strategies to enhance comprehension or repair it when it breaks down Will typically not enjoy reading or choose to read for pleasure

24 The Fourth Grade Slump Some students, especially those from socioeconomic disadvantage, may read adequately from kindergarten to third-grade but suddenly begin to struggle when they reach fourth-grade. This phenomenon has been referred to as the “fourth-grade slump.” In fourth-grade, texts become more complex and abstract and contain language and concepts that are more challenging. In subsequent grades, as texts become more and more difficult and supply less and less contextual support

25 Causes of the Fourth Grade Slump Lack of fluency and automaticity which tends to result, ultimately, in children’s reading less and avoiding more difficult materials Vocabulary words in text shift from high frequency to less common words. Too many difficult words and technical terms in content area texts negatively effect comprehension. Many upper-elementary grade teachers do not have, “substantial knowledge of how to teach reading,” (Grosso de Leon, 2002, p. 1).

26 “At the secondary level, the responsibility for teaching reading and writing often seems to belong to no one in particular.”

27 In a typical high-poverty urban school, approximately half of incoming ninth-grade students read at a sixth-or seventh-grade level or below.

28 How Can We Close the Reading Gap for Middle and High School Students?

29 Interventions – Tips For Teachers Make sure you scaffold Vary reading levels Differentiate instruction Explicitly teach reading strategies Provide students with reading choices

30 Fluency Interventions Partner Reading Fluency Word Cards Word Folder And the answer is… Repeated Reading Readers Theater

31 Decoding Interventions - Strategies Chunking Word Patterns Analogy Sight Words

32 Decoding Interventions - Activities Jumping Syllables The Name Game “Riming” Race Mother May I?

33 Comprehension Interventions Story Mapping Text Mapping Chunking The Text Answering the 7 “W’s” Word Study Boggle Tic-Tac-Toe Reciprocal teaching Questioning the Author Think-alouds QAR’s (question answer response)

34 Seeking Help for a Struggling Reader: Seven Steps for Teachers Get to know the student Get to know the family Encourage good literacy habits at home Tap into the specialist and resources in your own building Reflect on your own research-based teaching Advocate for the student through school-based and outside resources Stay informed

35 1. Get to know the student Find out the interests of your struggling reader and incorporate those into your teaching strategies and the materials you select. Using past records or the student’s cumulative folder, find out more about the student’s history of school success.

36 2. Get to know the family Helping a child learn to read is a community effort, and sometimes it requires sensitivity on the part of the teacher. It is important to reach ESL families, they may require special accommodations, like a translator or materials sent home in their native language.

37 3. Encourage good literacy habits at home Support family reading time by allowing students to borrow books overnight or for a few days. Offer suggestions to parents for fun, easy things that they can do at home to support literacy development.

38 4. Tap into the specialists and resources in your own building Schedule some time to discuss your struggling student with the speech/language pathologist. Meet with your reading specialist. Special education teachers have a wealth of knowledge regarding teaching dyslexia, learning disabilities, and the special education process.

39 5. Reflect on your own research-based teaching Good beginning instruction teaches children how to identify words, to understand what they read, to achieve fluency, and to develop a love for reading that will motivate them and stay with them for the rest of their lives. Most importantly, good reading instruction is tailored to the individual needs of students.

40 6. Advocate for the student through school-based and outside resources Many schools have tutoring programs in place for the struggling reader. Tutoring often takes place before and after school.

41 7. Stay informed Whether you’re new to the profession or an expert teacher, its important to keep current with what’s going on in the fields of reading and special education.

42 Some Major Recommendations given by the CORE Literacy Leadership Summit, March 2006: Direct, explicit comprehension instruction Effective instructional principles embedded in content Motivation and self-directed learning Text-based collaborative learning, lots of opportunities for meaningful discussion Diverse, interesting text at many levels Intensive writing Extended time for literacy

43 Direct Instruction in Comprehension Teachers explicitly explain and model a comprehension strategy Guided practice with feedback with discussion Independent practice and review, with further discussion Gerston, R., Fuchs, L., Williams, J., & Baker, S. (2001). Teaching reading comprehension strategies to students with learning disabilities: A review of research. Review of Educational Research, 7,

44 Resources: Florida State University and Florida Center for Reading Research National Reading Panel Alliance for Excellent Education – Literacy Instruction in the Content Area: Getting to the Core of Middle and High School Improvement – FactSheet, February 2006 – Issue Brief, June 2006

45 Heller, R. & Greenleaf, L. (2007). Literacy instruction in the content areas: Getting to the core of middle and high school improvement. Washington, DC: Alliance for Excellent Education. Vacca, Richard T., and Jo Anne L. Vacca. Content Area Reading. 9th ed. Boston: Pearson Education Inc.,

46 Jennings, Joyce H., JoAnne S. Caldwell, and Janet W. Lerner. Reading Problems. 5th ed. Boston: Pearson Education Inc., CORE Literacy Leadership Summit, March df df Department of Education and Early Childhood Development hingresources/english/literacy/concepts/4kcfourthgra de.htm hingresources/english/literacy/concepts/4kcfourthgra de.htm

47 National Center Education Statistics, Alliance for Excellent Education (2006). Reading and Writing in the Academic Content Areas. Issue Brief. Gerston, R., Fuchs, L., Williams, J., & Baker, S. (2001). Teaching reading comprehension strategies to students with learning disabilities: A review of research. Review of Educational Research, 7,

48 Essential Reading Strategies for the struggling reader: Interventions for struggling adolescent readers 10 Ways to Teach and Support Adolescent Readers 0/ai_n /pg_5?tag=artBody;col1 0/ai_n /pg_5?tag=artBody;col1 Seeking Help for Struggling Readers

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