The Benefits of the Programme
On the threshold of the third millennium you may be encountering, as an educator, unforeseen obstacles to make students read, to make them gain meaning from texts and, most difficult of all, to motivate them to undertake independent reading. Generally we find ourselves struggling to find the best selections, and design the most provocative questionnaires to dive students into the chosen texts. As a Literature teacher, it seems to me, rather, that we can obtain much more rewarding results if we address our interpersonal and intrapersonal skills to act as affective mediators between our kids and the text. By striking the right keys you can make your students vibrate and welcome you every morning with questions such as: “ Can we read in the first period? What have you brought us today? I was puzzled by this part! Can we talk about it?”
Too good to be true? A miracle? Wishful thinking? Well, if there is a wish, there is a way; and this is the first step to start and make it happen.
Indeed, within this framework the traditional notion that we “teach” Literature, that we “teach” how to read and write is challenged. The invitation here is to become a Reading and Writing Facilitator, to strengthen our skills to wake up the reader and writer in our kids. To enrich our strategies as communicators and lead our students through exciting reading and writing journeys.
After a rich experiential training programme a SUPPORT LEARNING Reading & Writing Facilitator will surely know how:
To stir excitement around independent reading
To develop a taste in students for shared reading
To engage learners in comprehensive reading
To draw on the Arts to assist readers in the building of reading and writing skills
To help build a core of common values through appropriate texts and activities
To frame talks to make reading a socially interactive process
To make reading a lived-through process
To use writing a s a catalyst for change
Through the SL Reading & Writing Facilitator Programme teachers can revisit myths about traditional literacy instruction and re-discover inner resources to shape engaged and committed readers in the classroom and beyond. The programme consists of four modules: The Reading and Language Arts Workshop, Weaving Literacy through the Arts, Values through Literature and the Reading & Writing Connection.
The whole cycle stresses the importance of affect in a caring classroom as well as celebratory and motivational strategies for students to develop inter and intra-personal skills. A crucial aspect is listening to their opinions and using the right language to trigger connections between our students’ emotional landscape and the texts. This supportive atmosphere can be created through the construction of dynamic literature circles, the use of literary journals and the inclusion of The Arts in the classroom. Central to the success of these encouraging contexts is your own modelling of empathetic skills and your sensitivity to tune in to your students’ needs.
As a school-based researcher and literacy educator, I can affirm that this short programme enables teachers to engage students of all ages, and, very especially, reach boys, who seem to be more academically detached than girls. School experience with boys is validated by specialized research. Just consider these facts:
Boys are three to five more times more likely than girls to have learning/and or reading disabilities placement in schools (National Centre for Education Statistics, 2000).
Boys in elementary school through high school score significantly lower than girls on standardized measures of reading achievement (Portoff, Phelps- Zientarsky, & Skovera, 1996).
Five out of six children and adolescents diagnosed with attention deficit disorder (ADD) and attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHA) are boys. (American Psychiatric Association, 1994).
In a world that craves for repair and healing gestures, most certainly, all children need adults to imbue them with hope and imagination of possibilities. If you really want to become one of these adults you will find in reading the most precious and resourceful way. Give it a try. It is worth undertaking.
For more info on workshops and consultation visits, please contact María Teresa Manteo at firstname.lastname@example.org| 54 11 4503 0605
American Psychiatry Association. (1994) Diagnostic and statistical manual of mental disorders (4thed.). Washington, DC.
Bettleheim, B. (1977). Psicoanálisis de los Cuentos de Hadas. Grijalbo. Barcelona
Brozo William G. (2002). To Be a Boy, To Be a Reader. DE: International Reading Association
Cramer, E.H. (1994). Fostering the Love of Reading: the Affective Domain in Reading Education. DE:. International Reading Association
Portoff, D.D., Phelps-Zientarsky, D., & Skovera, M. (1996). Gender perceptions of elementary and middle school students about literacy at school and home. Journal of Research and Development in Education, 29, 203-211.
Ruggiano Schmidt, P. & Watts Pailliotet, A. (2001). Exploring Values through Literature, Multimedia, and Literacy Events. DE: International Reading Association Sommers, C. H. (2001). The War Against Boys: How Misguided Feminism is Harming our Young Men. New York: Simon & Schuster
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