Literacy

Reading Resolutions for Educators: #5—Literacy for All!

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We’ve come to the conclusion of this series of posts on reading resolutions for educators. Could anyone have predicted what is happening in our schools? For me, my belief in education as the means to social justice, health, and safety has been bolstered. And a student’s ability to read competently and confidently remains essential to participating in school and life beyond the classroom.

The five resolutions I’ve presented you with were meant to apply research to create the best conditions for students learning and loving to read. Here’s a recap of the first four resolutions:

Resolution #5 breaks the pattern because it’s based on action research rather than academic research. I have learned from experts, along with the many students, colleagues, and educators I’ve had the privilege to be in contact with, about the power of AND. This leads to resolution number 5: And it will take all of us to make it a reality. Educators, families, and communities working together can achieve the goal of Literacy for All!

As literacy educators, we can be more effective when we embrace the power of and. Look at the difference a word can make:

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Each word on this list is connected to a robust evidence base. As most of us have been working in new ways that include more digital access, it makes sense to determine what works best in a “bricks” environment and what works best in a “clicks” environment. I’ve seen wonderful examples of teachers reading to whole classes with visuals that make the read-alouds feel very personal. Meanwhile, reading out loud to a family member is a perfect bricks activity that reinforces the home-school connection and provides for meaningful practice. This is but one example of how all the content and instructional items on this list are better together.

And it will take all of us, as is illustrated in the graphic below, with students at the center. This graphic reinforces what we all know to be true: Children and youth want to learn, teachers want to teach, school leaders want to provide support, and families want to help. There are also critical roles for researchers whose work inspired and informed these resolutions, and learning companies like HMH that are working to provide high-quality educational resources and professional learning experiences that support the important work of fostering reading and writing.

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Together, we are creating a new system of teaching and learning while focusing on literacy as a civil right. It will take all of our collective skill and will to ensure we reach this goal.

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This is the fifth and final post in a blog series based on Francie Alexander's recent webinar, “The Five Big Research-Based Ideas That Will Have a Positive Impact on Literacy Outcomes.”

Learn more about our science of reading curriculum, an evidence-based approach to help students in their reading journeys.

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