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 LC (Medium)   Students write about non-fiction texts as they practice comprehension strategies.

Elementary teachers in Rochester Community Schools deliver literacy instruction using a balanced literacy approach which research has shown is most effective.

Read Aloud:  The teacher reads aloud to the whole class using a carefully selected text which maybe fiction or nonfiction. Some read aloud sessions include student responses with partners turning to talk to each other about the text to aid in comprehension, and other sessions are for enjoyment and vocabulary development.

Shared Reading:  A text is read together as a class. Texts are chosen based on literary value or askill or strategy the teacher wants to target. It is often a text that would be too difficult for some students to read if they were asked to read it alone. Students read the text multiple times and are engaged in discussion about the text, skill or strategy. After practice, the teacher may ask the students to demonstrate their learning by completing a task related to the text.

Reading Workshop:  A variety of literacy activities may occur during reading workshop. The teacher begins with a whole class mini-lesson focusing on a skill or strategy that will benefit all students. Next, the teacher may meet with guided reading groups or have conferences with individual students about their reading. During this time, students self-select and read books that are at their independent readinglevels where they can read almost all the words accurately and fluently. Comprehension of the text is of the utmost importance.

Guided Reading:  The teacher works with small groups of students who have similar reading needs. Books or articles that are at the students' instructional level are used, and the teacher makes teaching points and supports the students as they read the text silently or aloud. The text may be above, below or at what is considered grade level. Students are able to learn and practice new skills or strategies that will help them grow as readers.

Writing Workshop:  Using a format similar to reading workshop, students engage in a variety of writing activities. The teacher guides the process and provides instruction through mini-lessons and conferences. Students use notebooks to collect ideas and practice strategies as they work their way through the prewriting, drafting, revising, editing and publishing process. An important aspect of the workshop involves students sharing their writing with others and getting feedback.

Shared Writing:  The teacher and students work together. At times, a "shared pen" technique is used that involves the children in the writing. It is an instructional approach with a focused outcome. In grades K-2 the outcome may be as simple as composing sentences, messages, or stories. In grades 3-5 the outcome might include writing dialogue, outlines or using previously-gathered information to generate a research paper

Spelling, Phonics and Grammar: Instruction in these areas is woven throughout all the elements of the Literacy Model. Teachers help students notice and use letters, sounds, and spelling patterns. Each grade level has a list of priority words that all students are expected to spell correctly in their everyday writing. Grammar is taught within the context of authentic writing experiences.