In order to ensure that all students are reading and writing on grade level and to strengthen core instruction, Austin ISD promotes a model of balanced literacy through reading and writing workshop to implement the English and Spanish language arts curriculum. This model facilitates the achievement of every student, representing an unwavering belief in the brilliance and potential of each child. The Literacy Plan supports a bilingual trajectory for students in Dual Language programs with the goal of complete bilingualism and biliteracy. For more information regrading Dual Language programming, visit http://duallanguage.org.
While the Austin ISD Literacy Plan focuses on strengthening core, tier one instruction, students needing additional support receive specialized tier two and three interventions. This includes structured, systematic, and explicit instruction for students with dyslexia and other reading disabilities. Trained reading interventionists or Certified Academic Language Therapists (CALTs) provide interventions with a goal of a CALT on every campus.
District-Wide Literacy Strategies: Austin ISD students will build literacy prowess throughout the school day by engaging in talking, reading, and writing across digital and print platforms.
• Talk About It: Students talk with partners, in small groups, and as a whole class in informal and formal discussions to process lesson content, use academic vocabulary, express opinions, ask questions, and give information.
• Write to Learn: Students process content, grapple with ideas, and explain their thinking through short, informal writing. This is low-pressure writing that is not evaluated for conventions.
• Read Actively: Students read actively with a pen (or a mouse) in hand, annotating on the text, using an online platform, or an interactive notebook.
The Literacy Plan provides reinforced, vertically aligned support for the Language Arts classroom, pre-kindergarten through 12th grade. This includes a glossary of instructional terms, classroom norms, and recommended schedules that illustrate how to organize and maximize the instruction of daily components of literacy.
In the Language Arts classroom, teachers provide direct instruction on grade-level TEKS in short Focus Lessons as shown in the Austin ISD curriculum. Dynamic learning continues through a variety of contexts, including independent reading as well as conferring, guided and cooperative groups. Reading and writing are connected, and students individually engage with the reading and writing processes. This framework serves to empower students and teachers to cultivate relevant, challenging, and transformative literacy experiences.
|Beyond the school day, students have opportunities to engage with literacy through online reading platforms, writing contests, and community engagement projects. All students have access to downloadable e-books through MackinVia and MyOn.com. Parents should reach out to their student's teacher or librarian for information. The e-books can be read on any device and do not require having internet access at home.|
Research shows that students who read the most are the ones who do the best in school! Therefore, Structured Independent Reading is the Year 1 Focus of the Austin ISD Literacy Plan. This is a key time for teachers to maximize strategic, individualized instruction while students actively read and discuss books and other texts. Through this focus, we aim to develop lifelong readers with deep motivation and investment in reading in and out of school.
To support the year 1 focus, all Language Arts classrooms will receive books for classroom libraries! These collections have been carefully curated to include a wide variety of grade and language appropriate, culturally relevant, fiction, nonfiction and content area texts. Students have access to classroom library books, school library collections, e-books as well as specialized reading support platforms for students identified with dyslexia.