Learning to Read, Reading to Learn - A Middle Years Literacy Intervention Project: Success for all Learners in the Middle Years of Schooling (5-9)

By Claire Acevedo and David Rose.

Published by The Learner Collection

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Article: Print $US10.00
Article: Electronic $US5.00

This paper describes a unique literacy program Learning to Read, Reading to Learn, and its implementation in the Middle Years of Schooling (5-9) by the Catholic Education Office Melbourne, to successfully accelerate the literacy development of “at risk” learners, and close the gap between the most and least successful learners in our schools. It enables teachers to use mainstream texts to scaffold student learning, using a carefully sequenced series of reading, writing and spelling activities which can be applied in all disciplines. The distinctive features of this approach are that it uses high quality, challenging, age-appropriate texts, articulates strongly to mainstream curriculum and assessment practices and rewrites classroom discourse patterns to enable success for all learners. It can be used in mainstream or withdrawal contexts and models literate language features in both fiction and factual texts. Furthermore it is capable of extending the learning of the most competent students in the class or group. Data on student progress, collected over a two year period, shows improvement in literacy outcomes at an average of two to four times expected rates of development, for all students across all classes and schools.

Keywords: Literacy Learning, Teacher Professional Development

The International Journal of Learning, Volume 13, Issue 11, pp.73-84. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Article: Electronic (PDF File; 1.232MB).

Claire Acevedo

Senior Education Officer, School Services, Catholic Education Office Melbourne, Australia

Claire Acevedo is a Senior Education Officer at the Catholic Education Office in Melbourne. She is responsible for the implementation of the Middle Years Literacy Project (Yrs 5 -9) and Secondary Literacy provision as part of the CEO Literacy Advance Strategy. In her current role she provides professional development and strategic advice to teachers and school leaders in the area of Literacy and curriculum and leads and co-ordinates research projects in the areas of Literacy Intervention and Inclusive Curriculum for marginalised students. She is an experienced secondary ESL and LOTE teacher who has taught in the adult literacy and tertiary education sectors. She has been involved in leadership, whole school literacy initiatives and school based research into literacy learning in Catholic schools for many years.

Dr David Rose

Principal Research Fellow, Faculty of Education and Social Work, University of Sydney, Australia

Dr David Rose coordinates a long-term action research program in language and literacy, entitled Learning to Read: Reading to Learn. This program trains teachers from junior primary, though secondary to university levels in literacy scaffolding strategies. It currently conducts major training programs with state and independent school systems in NSW and Victoria, and in universities across Australia, and in South Africa and Latin America. Within Sydney University the program works with the Koori Centre and Yooroang Garang School of Indigenous Health. David's work has been particularly concerned with Indigenous Australian communities, languages and education programs, with whom he has worked for 25 years, in remote communities in northern and central Australia, as well as in NSW, Victoria and South Australia. As well as literacy teaching and teacher education, David's primary research interests now include language and cultural contexts and language evolution. He is the author of The Western Desert Code: an Australian cryptogrammar. Canberra: Pacific Linguistics, 2001, Working with Discourse: meaning beyond the clause (with J.R. Martin). London: Continuum, 2003 and Genre Relations: mapping culture (also with J.R. Martin). London: Equinox, 2005.

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