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Sunday, December 13, 2015

What's My Second Loudest Battle Cry? Literacy for All (Right After Communication for All)

I did a guest post this past week for Education to the Core.  In it, I talk about one of my favorite subjects - literacy skills for all students; including those with moderate to severe disabilities.  You might want to check it out here.

In school districts, I spend time with teachers showing them how to adapt literature that is age or grade appropriate for their students.  I also create a lot of resources that are adaptations of primary storybooks, and have been adding some Middle School books recently, as well.

By coincidence I’ve just finished a bigger guided reading unit - the first of many, I hope - that adapts a simple folktale for students with a range of skills and needs and provides not just language skills activities like vocabulary, sequencing and retelling; but also word and sentence reading and working with words activities beyond what I usually include in my book adaptations.
I thought I’d give you a little sneak peek here. 

I try to cover a lot of ground and give SLPs and teachers as much background information as I can. I talk about the hierarchy of comprehension questions and Bloom’s Taxonomy, making predictions and answering Wh-questions, and provide a range of “I Can..” posters for your room.

I include vocabulary activities for words that are important and maybe unfamiliar in both the story text and informational text we create about the background topic, some simple reading and predictable chart writing activities, and a variety of sequencing and retelling opportunities.

In addition, Word Work activities include counting words and sounds, sound blending and segmenting, manipulating sounds (changing initial sounds in words), rhyming and word families, initial sound sorting and recognition.

I am hopeful that by expanding the materials I usually present with my book adaptations I can provide more ideas for teachers and SLPs for how to work on literacy and language skills with stories, as well as save them a lot of time by having all those things ready-made.

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