Read the extract: Students need many opportunities to read, read, read.
Now refer to the document Checklist of research-based experiences to improve students' reading and use this to evaluate some aspects of your personal and/or school's literacy work.
If you value the research and wish to improve your literacy work some of the questions to ask yourself are:
Working with a colleague, perhaps a literacy coordinator, work through these questions and the practices referred to in the checklist and note some ideas that you could implement to improve Independent Reading for your students. You might conduct a brainstorming session at a grade level, KLA or Faculty meeting where you could all benefit from the ideas generated.
For example, ways to collect resources for classroom libraries:
Read the document: Statements from Research about the Importance of Independent Reading. Consider the implications for classroom practice and whether your students have sufficient time and resources for Independent Reading.
Reflect on any changes you may need to make to your teaching and consider the importance of whole school policies about issues related to Independent Reading.
If you have been spending too much time on test practice rather than Independent Reading you need to be aware of the research stated regarding this issue. More information about this research is provided in Unit 6: Best Practices in Literacy Teaching: the Basis of Best Preparation for Standardised Assessment.
The basis for Best Practices in Literacy, was initially written to offer guidance to schools where the influence of standardised test results could have caused the curriculum to have been skewed towards tasks that focused on test practice. The implications of the cited research and actions need to be considered by both school leadership teams and classroom teachers in order to achieve the best literacy results, even in standardised tests.
Throughout this course you will find more information about the actions suggested, particularly in relation to the suggestions about Independent Reading and comprehension.
For further information about research about Independent Reading refer to the articles: The effects of Independent Reading on Reading Achievement
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