Friday, January 22, 2010

Literacy Circles

I was talking to some teachers this morning and they were asking if I knew of any resources for literacy circles. They wanted to add some materials to what they already had on the subject so they could continue to differentiate their teaching with their students. Take a look at the following eight resources and let me know what you think.

So check them out, poke around, and let me know of any websites that you use for literacy circles. It's by sharing that we come together as a community of educators and help all of our students.

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

More resources......

Teachers are constantly looking for new resources for their classrooms. The internet has many excellent resources for teachers and students to use but the internet can be overwhelming in it's size. If you look to the left of this blog, you can see a list of websites that we have found helpful. As we meet with teachers through the year, we constantly add to our list of links based on their recommendations. Please take a moment to look at some of the new additions.

Homework resources:



More resources will be added this week. Please let us know of websites that you have found to be helpful!

Monday, January 11, 2010

More on Response to Intervention (RTI)

Our previous article explored some of the frequently asked questions about Response to Intervention (RTI). I would like to continue with that theme and provide more information. RTI is composed of several activities that support students in both academics and behavior. Parent involvement is strongly encouraged and documented throughout the process. RTI supports the use of high-quality instructional and behavioral structure in a school. Scientific, research-based interventions are provided to students on a consistent basis to students who have been found "at-risk". These interventions are documented so that both parents and school personnel are aware of what the specific components and structure of the process are in regards to the interventions. Interventions address each individual student's learning difficulties and provide the needed level of intensity in order to make adequate progress. Progress is continuously monitored of at-risk students in order to help guide their instruction and ensure the instruction is meeting their needs. This data is documented and maintained on each student to help ensure that interventions are being implemented with fidelity and the intended intensity. The team of parents and school personnel use the data to make a data-based decision as to if interventions are working or if a comprehensive evaluation might be necessary in order to rule out the possibility of a learning disability.
Response to Intervention is a multi-layered process. It allows home and school to collaborate on ways to support a student in need. RTI is a process that is growing and changing, improving what all of us can do to help that student reach their potential and beyond.

Friday, January 8, 2010

Frequently Asked Questions About RTI

FAQ: Response to Intervention (RTI)

1. Q: What is Response to Intervention (RTI)?
A: Response to Intervention is a multitiered process that provides interventions to struggling learners at increasing levels of intensity. Universal screenings are used for the early identification of struggling learners. The process allows for collaboration between teachers, specialists, and parents in order to plan strategies and the use of resources to help a student make progress in the general curriculum.

2. Q: What is the purpose of RTI?
A: RTI is intended to provide interventions to a student before they begin to fail. This is different from the discrepancy method which has been called the "wait to fail" approach. The Individuals with Disabilities Education Improvement Act (IDEA) of 2004 allows the use of RTI data as part of the evaluation for learning disabilities. This Act adds the concept in eligibility that prohibits children from being found eligible for special education if they have not received instruction in the five components of reading as identified by Reading First. The components are: phonemic awareness, phonics, fluency, vocabulary, and comprehension.

3. Q: What are the other benefits to RTI?
A: RTI has many benefits. It promotes collaboration between general education and special education professionals, earlier identification of students using a problem-solving approach, and the provision of more instructionally relevant data.

4. Q: What are the central principles of Response to Intervention?
A: First, schools should use scientific, researched-based interventions and instruction in general education. These interventions and instruction should have a high probability of success for the majority of the students. Teachers should monitor classroom performance and progress to ensure students are meeting grade-level standards on a regular basis. Waiting until information is provided on statewide assessments does not allow the teacher to adjust their teaching and lesson plans throughout the year.

These are just four of many of the questions about RTI. As the year progresses we will continue to answer more questions. If you have a question about RTI, please send it in an email and we will do our best to address it.