Literacy in a classroom context includes;
Reading - including narrative and informative texts. This goes beyond the children being able to decode the text and say the words on a page and includes being able to predict meaning, interpret an author's intent, understand inferred meaning, make connections and draw conclusions which can be applied to their own lives.
- The children need to develop their reading skills to make the shift from learning to read, to reading to learn.
- In our classroom, your children will be engaged in guided reading sessions where they use a variety of writing genre to demonstrate understanding. The program allows for many different abilities and levels of interest. It is essential that your child is continually involved in reading a novel of their own choice and suited to their own ability and that they bring it with them to school every day.
- In order to allow them to choose a novel, the children have been instructed on how to conduct a simple test, called the 'Five' test. They use the fingers/thumb on one hand to count the number of errors they make reading one page of a novel. They begin will all fingers/thumb extended and put it away if an error is made. An error can be;
1. stumbling over a difficult word
2. having to reread a passage because meaning has been lost
3. substituting an incorrect word when reading through a passage.
When finished the page, if they have no fingers left - the text is too difficult, if they have all five digits still extended - the text is too easy, if they have two or three fingers extended - it should provide an appropriate level of challenge, without compromising their confidence.
- Writing - in both narrative and informative genres.
The children write poems, stories, lists, plays, procedures, descriptions, diagrams, songs, reports, explanations, persuasions, essays, ........... and many more. They can produce these texts using pen and paper, computers, calligraphy brushes, cameras, tape recorders, or even using video.
- The functional elements of writing, such as spelling, phonics, punctuation, grammar, handwriting, proof-reading and editing, are all an essential part of our learning program and will be treated using explicit teaching.
Our spelling program is focused around examining the phonic structures and commonalities of words and identifying patterns and sound groupings in words. There will a spelling list sent home for them to learn. Tests will be conducted at appropriate developmental times, dependent upon the children's understanding and mastery of the identified spelling conventions. Daily lessons, as well as game based activities will also be conducted. Weekly homework sheets, including the focus phonic sound, will be sent as homework, for your child to independently record words to bring home and learn. This will need to be returned to school, in the assigned folder, every Friday.
Handwriting - A consistent standard of handwriting is expected at this level of schooling. We will be continuing to work on their control and presentation skills by means of a variety of lessons. Speed and fluency also become extremely important at this level, due to the increase in required written work.
- Viewing, Listening & Speaking - this also includes both narrative and informative texts. Communication of information has evolved swiftly over recent years. Students now have access to many channels of information and entertainment. Modern classrooms need to include this evolution in their programs. The students will view movies, documentaries, posters, packaging, advertisements, websites, pop-ups, and even YouTube clips. This is a part of their future and we need to help them to predict meaning, interpret an author's intent, understand inferred meaning and draw conclusions which can be applied to their own lives.