Friday, October 14, 2011

Literacy Defined

Q. How define "literacy"?

A. "...speaking, reading, listening, writing and understanding language is being literate."

MC Taylor. Journal of Adolescent and Adult Literacy  (Mar. 06), 500.

Note: Environments are not literate. Environments can't read, write, etc. RayS.

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Multi-cullltural Literature

Q.  How can teachers learn and use multicultural literary works that are unfamiliar to parents?

A. Prepare rationales for teaching the multicultural literary works. Share the books with parents and other groups.

RJ Stallworth, et al. Journal of Adolescent and Adult Literacy (Mar. 06), 478-489.

[RayS. For examples of rationales for teaching literary works, go to]

 Here are some guidelines for constructing rationales for teaching literary works:

A brief summary of the book.

Appropriate grade and maturity level of the students who will be reading the book.

A detailed plot summary.

Values of the book to the students who read it.

Literary qualities of the book.

Objectives in using the book.

Teaching methods to be used in reading the book.

Assignments to be completed by the students while reading the book.

Professional educators’ opinions about the values of reading the book.

These guidelines are taken from Teaching English, How To…. By Raymond Stopper, Xlibris, 2004, pp. 434-435.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011


Q. Why do people become teachers?

A. "None of us became teachers out of a burning desire to raise students' test scores."

CM Santa. Journal of Adolescent and Adult Literacy (Mar. 06), 475.

[RayS. In light of the No Child Left Behind law, I think it is time to poll teachers on why they became teachers. How do the effects of the No Child Left Behind law affect their goals as teachers?]

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Action Research

Q. How encourage teachers to participate in action research?

A. Publish their work.

LS Eckert. Reading Research Quarterly (Apr/May/Jun 06), 288.

Comment: As a supervisor, K-12, I didn't encourage teachers to do enough action research in the classroom. If I had, I could have published their work. One of many opportunities I missed. RayS.

Monday, October 10, 2011

Reading and Science

Q. Why don't teachers use science picture books in primary grades?

A. Reading and writing science are different from typical primary narratives. Predominance of the story genre. Not aware such books are available. Undermine the hands-on approach to science.

 CC Pappas. Reading Research Quarterly (Apr/May/Jun 06), 226.

[RayS: Raises question as to how best to use information books in the primary grades.]

Friday, October 7, 2011

Innercity Libraries

Q.  How reform inner city libraries to try to address the achievement gap between low-income students and privileged students?

A. Merely providing resources--print and technological--did not bridge the gap. Low-income students with low knowledge and background did not make better use of libraries even though the resources had been upgraded significantly. One idea, however, seemed to offer hope--librarians who got out from behind their desks to work actively with students.

JP Neuman and D Celano. Reading Research Quarterly  (Apr/May/Jun 06), 176-201. [RayS: I think the latter finding is significant. Librarians need to be teachers.]

Thursday, October 6, 2011

ESL (English as a Second Language)

Q. How help ESL students learn English?

A. "Survival English" to understand important words.

CL Medina and G Campano. Language Arts (Mar. 06), 337.

 [RayS: What "survival words" would I emphasize in my secondary English classroom in teaching English? Interesting idea. A place to begin. This idea might be of value for native-English speakers. Reduce the class to key words or concepts that are really important to the meaning of the class. More realistic would be to begin units with key words.]