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More on Language and Vocabulary Development

posted Mar 30, 2019, 11:00 PM by HSD Principal
During some of our language PD this year, you may have been thinking, "But those methods don't really apply to how my class engages with our course content." Help is here. The article Instructional Leadership for Disciplinary Literacy (you will need to login to your ASCD account for access) provides a bunch of helpful questions to figure out what good language use looks like in your class. Those questions are divided in to four categories and some sample questions are below:

Reading:
  • In your classroom, what does it mean to read like a historian/literary critic/ mathematician/scientist? Have you made this explicit to your students?
  • Which texts might students read that mirror what professionals in this field read?
  • What supports might students need to read such texts?
  • What real-world problems, tensions, phenomena, or discoveries might these texts address?
  • What’s the best balance between easy, challenging, and complex texts to help students improve their reading skills in this field?
Writing:
  • In your classroom, what does it mean to write like a historian/literary critic/ mathematician/scientist? What kinds of writing are common in this discipline? Have you made this explicit to students?
  • What are some good mentor texts for students to study – for example, argumentative essays, infographics, writing from sources, technical reports?
  • How might what students are reading inspire their writing?
Oral communication:
  • In your classroom, what does it mean to speak and present like a historian/literary critic/mathematician/scientist?
  • What types of public presentations are common in this discipline?
  • What exemplars might students watch – for example, TED Talks?
  • How is vocabulary used in oral communication in this field?
Group work:
  • In your classroom, what does it mean to collaborate in ways similar to professionals in the discipline?
  • What language structures and communication norms are common in the field?
  • What roles do members of this discipline play when working with others?

And if you're still looking for more ideas, here is some extended reading:
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