Our literacy work at Saddle Rock Elementary School is supported through the collaboration with the Teachers College Reading and Writing Project. Units are aligned with Next Generation Learning Standards. As a Project School, Saddle Rock benefits from part-time staff developers, workshops throughout the school year, yearlong study groups for administrators and teachers, and summer institutes. Our Literacy Coordinator, Jamie Hackman, also provides ongoing staff development for our staff.
The structure of Reading Workshop, which takes place daily in kindergarten through fifth grade, includes a mini-lesson (brief whole class teacher-directed instruction which may be based on a read aloud or shared reading); a time when children are reading (independently, with partners, in reading centers, in book clubs or in guided reading groups) while teachers are conferring or meeting with small groups; and a shared time.
Classroom libraries are filled with a variety of books organized in bins on shelves by topic, author, series and by level of difficulty. Teachers use a variety of tools to assess the abilities and needs of individual children throughout the course of workshop teaching.
The structure of Writer’s Workshop, which also takes place daily in grades kindergarten through fifth, includes a mini-lesson; a time when children are writing and the teacher is conferring; and a shared time. From kindergarten through second grade, children keep their writing in folders. Starting in third grade, children keep writer’s notebook.