Six guidelines for the use of writing across the content areas

Here are six strategies that classroom teachers need to learn: Determine content and language objectives for each lesson.

Six guidelines for the use of writing across the content areas

Classrooms foster cognitive collaboration Most classroom teachers work hard planning lessons, choosing materials, teaching classes, working with individual students, and assessing student progress.

Yet some schools and teachers seem to be more successful than others. What makes the difference? One of the studies has been examining English programs in two sets of middle and high schools with similar student populations.

In the other set of schools, students perform more typically. Most of the schools in the study serve students from high poverty, big city neighborhoods. By comparing these two sets of classrooms, we have been able to identify and validate six features of instruction that make a difference in student performance.

It is important to understand that the six features identified in this research are interrelated and supportive of one another. The higher performing schools exhibit all six characteristics. As you read the classroom examples, you will see that elements of all features can be found in each.

Although addressing one feature may bring about improved student performance, it is the integration of all the features that will effect the most improvement. Students learn skills and knowledge in multiple lesson types What does that mean?

Teachers in the more effective programs use a variety of different teaching approaches based on student need.

Teaching Reading and Writing in the Content Areas | Adolescent Literacy |

For example, if students need to learn a particular skill, item, or rule, the teacher might choose a separated activity to highlight it. Students would study the information as an independent lesson, exercise or drill without considering its larger meaning or use e.

To give students practice, teachers prepare or find simulated activities that ask students to apply concepts and rules within a targeted unit of reading, writing, or oral language. Students are expected to read or write short units of text with the primary purpose of practicing the skill or concept.

Often students are asked to find examples of that skill in use in their literature and writing books, as well as in out-of-school activities.

For example, a teacher might ask students to identify examples of literary devices within a particular selection, or to write their own examples of these devices. To help students bring together their skills and knowledge within the context of a purposeful activity, teachers use integrated activities.

These require students to use their skills or knowledge to complete a task or project that has meaning for them. Teachers of the higher performing students use all three of these approaches.

They don't use them in any linear sequence or in equal amount, but they use them as they are needed to help students become aware of and learn to use particular skills and knowledge. It is the combination of all three approaches, based on what the students need, that appears to make the difference.

Integrated activities provide ways for students to put their understandings to use in the context of larger and more meaningful activities. In more typically performing schools, teachers often rely on one strategy, missing opportunities to strengthen instruction and to integrate it across lessons and throughout the year.

Some activities that work Offering separated and simulated activities to individuals, groups, or the entire class as needed Providing overt, targeted instruction and review as models for peer and self-evaluation Teaching skills, mechanics, or vocabulary that can be used during integrated activities such as literature discussions Using all three kinds of instruction to scaffold ways to think and discuss e.

For example, she often teaches vocabulary skills within the context of literature and writing, but she also asks students to complete practice workbook exercises designed to increase their vocabularies. To provide practice with analogies, Gail goes beyond merely providing examples: Later, students design vocabulary mobiles that she displays in the classroom.

Gail uses the same approach when she targets literary concepts, conventions, and language. These books incorporate vocabulary, alliteration, and story telling through words and pictures. During one recent school year, five books were entered in the county fair competition, and one of them was awarded first prize.

Teachers integrate test preparation into instruction What does that mean?

Reading Across the Content Areas | ASCD Inservice

In higher performing schools, the knowledge and skills for performing well on high stakes tests are made overt to both teachers and students.

Teachers, principals and district-level coordinators often create working groups of professionals who collaboratively study the demands of the high stakes tests their students will take. They even take the tests themselves to identify the skills and knowledge required to do well.

six guidelines for the use of writing across the content areas

They discuss how these demands relate to district and state standards and expectations as well as to their curriculum, and then they discuss ways to integrate these skills into the curriculum. This reflection helps teachers understand the demands of the test, consider how these demands relate to their current practice, and plan ways to integrate the necessary skills and knowledge into the curriculum, across grades and school years.Reading & Writing Connections Across the Content Areas Participants.

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Nearly half in top 5 US cities don't speak English at home. includes guidelines and steps for teaching writing strategies, examples of writing content and technical areas, particularly at the secondary level, are provided.

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Formal Writing Across the Content Areas.

six guidelines for the use of writing across the content areas

Locate the Incorporating Formal Writing in the Content Areas handout from the handout packet. Read the handout. Then, place a checkmark beside the writing activities on page 2 that you already incorporate in your content area instruction. Locate Handout General Prewriting Guidelines for.

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