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Supporting Literacy in the Upper Elementary Classroom**
 
Course Description
    

In this workshop, participants will learn about technologies that can be used to strengthen teaching and learning in many aspects of literacy development in upper elementary classrooms. The content covered includes multiple ways to use technology to support a variety of approaches to developing students' literacy, including developing vocabulary, framing ideas for writing, promoting critical research skills, facilitating revision processes including teacher and peer editing, and publishing final products. During this workshop, participants will develop a technology-enhanced lesson that addresses national and local literacy standards. To support this lesson development process, participants will examine a sample lesson plan that incorporates several ways technology can support reading and writing across the curriculum. Participants will also discuss strategies for the ongoing assessment of students' literacy development.

*This course is appropriate for teachers of grades 3-5.

 
Course Syllabus
    

Catalog Description

In this workshop, participants will learn about technologies that can be used to strengthen teaching and learning in many aspects of literacy development in upper elementary classrooms. The content covered includes many ways to use technology to support a variety of approaches to developing students’ literacy, including developing vocabulary, framing ideas for writing, promoting critical research skills, facilitating revision processes and teacher and peer editing, and publishing final products. During this workshop, participants will develop a technology-enhanced lesson that addresses national and local literacy standards. To support this lesson development process, participants will examine a sample lesson plan that incorporates several ways technology can support reading and writing across the curriculum. Participants will also discuss strategies for the ongoing assessment of students’ literacy development.

Prerequisites

This is an introductory course for teachers, technology specialists, curriculum specialists, professional development specialists, or other school personnel.  Participants are expected to have regular access to computers.  In addition, participants should be proficient with using email, browsing the Internet, and navigating to computer files.

 

Goals

This workshop will enable participants to:

  1. Develop a technology-enhanced lesson plan that addresses national and local curriculum standards
  2. Learn how new technologies can enhance each phase of the writing process, from brainstorming to publishing student work
  3. Develop a personal collection of web-based resources for curricular use
  4. Learn approaches for using technology to accommodate students’ individual needs
  5. Develop strategies for the ongoing assessment of students’ literacy development

Assessment and Course Requirements

Each session includes readings, an activity, and a discussion assignment, which participants are required to complete.

 

Course Products

As a final product, students will develop a sample technology-enhanced lesson plan for their classroom using the following template:

Template for Planning a Technology-Enhanced Project
http://www.edtechleaders.org/documents/uplit/planningtemplateUpLit.doc

 

Discussion Participation

Participants will be evaluated on the frequency and quality of their discussion board participation.  Participants are required to post a minimum of two substantial postings each session, including one that begins a new thread and one that responds to an existing thread.  Postings that begin new threads will be reviewed based on their relevance, demonstrated understanding of course concepts, examples cited, and overall quality.  Postings that respond to other participants will be evaluated on relevance, degree to which they extend the discussion, and tone.

 

Required Readings, Activities and Assignments

 

Session One: Integrating Technology into Your Language Arts Curriculum
In this session, participants will examine some of the online resources available to help you integrate technology into your Language Arts curriculum. They will read about how technology is changing literacy instruction from the traditional oral and print-based methods to incorporate online and electronic texts as well as multimedia. In the activities section, participants will explore websites filled with teacher resources as well as websites that allow students the opportunity to complete online activities related to building literacy skills.

 

Readings:

 

As an activity, participants will visit several web-based language arts resources that they will evaluate for their own classroom use.

 

Session Two: Using Technology to Enhance Reading Instruction
In this session, participants will read how technology can enhance the way you teach your students to become better readers and to appreciate the joy of literacy. Participants will read about how technology can help them address the needs of diverse learners and how technology can help connect their students to peers around the world to share their love of literacy.

 

Readings:

 

As an activity for this session, participants will read steps 1 – 3 from the Sample Lesson Plan (http://www.edtechleaders.org/documents/uplit/samplelesson/SampleLesson_Intro.htm)and on their Template for Planning a Technology-Enhanced Project (http://www.edtechleaders.org/documents/uplit/planningtemplateUpLit.doc), they will start planning the overall focus of their lesson plan, and write down preliminary ideas for student activities.
Participants will also register for a free ePALS email account so that they can begin to explore the available resources within this site to help them create a larger reading community with their students. (http://www.epals.com/register/)

 

Session Three: Using Graphic Organizers to Build Literacy Skills
In this session, participants will read about how graphic organizers can help students to become better readers and writers. Participants will also explore a variety of electronic graphic organizers that students can use to organize their thoughts around reading and writing tasks.

 

Readings:

  • Graphic Organizersby Tracey Hall & Nicole Strangman
    http://www.cast.org/publications/ncac/ncac_go.html
  • Learning Resources: Graphic Organizers
    http://eduscapes.com/tap/topic73.htm

 

As an activity for this session, participants will read step 4 from the Sample Lesson Plan and explore and evaluate the Graphic Organizer Linkshighlighted in the session.  They will brainstorm ways in which they can incorporate graphic organizers into their literacy curriculum.

 

Session Four: Computers and the Writing Process
In this session participants will investigate ways in which technology can support the writing and revision process for all students, including students with disabilities.

 

Readings:

 

As an activity for this session, participants will read steps 5 & 6 (including links to Sample Rubrics 5 & 6) from the Sample Lesson Plan. On their Template for Planning a Technology-Enhanced Lesson, they will brainstorm how they will take advantage of computers to assist students with writing.  They will experiment with their word processing software to find strategies for keeping track of revisions and adding peer comments.  Lastly, participants will explore some of the software available to help students with reading and writing disabilities.

 

Session Five: Publishing Student Work
In this session, participants will read about the motivating influences of publishing on students' writing development, and they will explore ways to use technology to share students' work with a broad audience.

 

Readings:

 

As an activity for this session, participants will finish reading the Sample Lesson Plan (including the link to NWREL's writing rubric). On theirTemplatet for Planning a Technology-Enhanced Project, they will keep track of ideas and resources for publishing their students’ work. Participants will explore in-depth several online venues where students can publish their work.

 

Session Six: Assessment Strategies and Sharing Lesson Plans

In this session, participants will read about different strategies to assess the literacy development of students. Participants will also plan ways in which to incorporate these assessment strategies in their technology-enhanced lessons. Participants will share draft lesson plans for feedback in the session six discussion forum.

 

Readings:

 

As an activity for this session, participants will complete a rough draft of their lesson plan and post it in the online discussion for feedback. Participants will review and comment on one of the plans presented by their fellow participants in the course.  They will also explore some web sites containing various writing rubrics.