Strategies for Improving Reading and Writing Skills
Internet Sites for Improving Reading
- Building Cathedrals: Secondary Reading Strategies - contains a number of general and specific reading strategies for content area teachers. Information on schema theory and cueing systems is also provided. Also, included are strategies for critical reading and working with words.
Corner - has secondary reading strategies for comprehension, vocabulary, writing a report, and test taking. Step-by-step directions for each strategy is included, as well as samples and blank forms that can be copied and pasted into Word.
- Teachervision.com - provides a number of graphic organizers that can be used in all content areas. Printable versions can be downloaded and/or e-mailed. These graphic organizers can be used as Preparation, Assistance, and Reflection activities. There are also links to professional development, lesson plans, and other resources.
- Reading Strategies - Students become better readers when they know why they are reading. Teach them to recognize when they are reading to be informed, reading for literary experience, or reading to perform a task, and help them to name, select, and apply strategies appropriate for each intent.
- Strategies for Reading Comprehension - a nice collection of proven reading strategies that can be useful in teaching Social Studies content.
- Teaching-Learning Strategies - a collection of strategies to develop fluent and proficient readers capable of comprehending a range of texts, then being able to interact with the texts, and to shape their responses based on their reading.
- The Read to Write Project - a site that tries to allow students to make a real connection between reading and writing. Students can use the site as a concrete, visual tool to help them look at reading material in a much more analytical way.
- Content Reading Strategies - some techniques that teachers can use to help students obtain information from their content books and participate in the classroom discussions.
- Strategies for Reading in the Content Areas - contains strategies to strengthen students' abilities to read for information and to become strategic readers.
- Help! I Am Not A Reading Teacher - One teacher's tips on teaching reading and content; create a lesson for your content area that embeds quality reading instruction within the context of a lesson specifically for your content area.
- Teaching Today: Reading Skills - Teaching Today offers a host of ready-to-use teaching tips and free downloads to help you improve your students' reading skills.
- Retellings - A downloadable PDF File containing a specific reading strategy
- Literary Circles - A downloadable PDF File containing a specific reading strategy
- Secondary Reading Strategies Applied to "Wish You Well" by David Baldacci - This lesson plan in PDF format provides ideas that promote reading as a strategic and interactive process. Many of these strategies could be applied to other literary works that are included in the secondary curriculum.
- Reading in the Content Areas: Strategies for Success - This article stresses that content teachers can structure lessons to assist struggling readers when they are reading content-based material.
Internet Sites for Improving Writing
* The Internet list for "improving writing" was provided by The Educator's Reference Desk.
The T.R.A.D.I.T.I.O.N. Project
- The Neglected "R:" The Need for a Writing Revolution - "American education will never realize its potential as an engine of opportunity and economic growth until a writing revolution puts language and communication in their proper place in the classroom." A report from the National Commission on Writing in America's Schools and Colleges.
- The Nation's Report Card - Writing - This site includes information on the writing achievement of American students as determined by the National Assessment of Educational Progress.
- About.com -- Writing Instruction Resources for Secondary School Educators - Includes links to the following writing instruction resources: Grammar, Style and Mechanics, Essay, Paragraph and Research Paper Instruction, and Multi-featured Internet Writing Resources.
- Writing About Literature - This guide for students responding to literary texts was created as part of the online companion to The Norton Introduction to Literature.
- Word Processing and its Effect on the Writing Process - This article examines the effect of word processing on the writing of third through sixth graders.
- 6+1 Traits of Writing - A writing assessment model that identifies seven traits of successful writing. Provided by the Northwest Regional Educational Laboratory.
- How to Start a Writer's Workshop - This site includes information and advice from a district literacy trainer on running a writer's workshop.
- Journal Writing Every Day: Teachers Say It Really Works! - "Education World talked with teachers who use daily journal writing in their classrooms." This article also includes a thread for teachers to post ideas for writing prompts that work with their students.
- Gloria's Web Site - "This web site is an online workshop for classroom teachers that are interested in implementing the writing process in their classroom."
- Young Authors Workshop - Provides students with resources to help them through the writing process. Also includes some additional information for teachers. Mainly intended for middle school students (Grades 4 through 7).
- KAIROS: A Journal For Teachers of Writing in Webbed Environments - "An electronic journal designed to serve as a peer-reviewed resource for teachers, researchers, and tutors of writing, including such areas as composition studies, rhetoric, technical and professional writing, creative writing, and literary studies."
- About.com -- Creative Writing for Teens - A collection of resources to help develop creative writing skills.
- A+ Research and Writing for High School and College Students - Sections include: Step by Step - guide to researching and writing a paper, Info Search - finding information in cyberspace and in your library, Links - to great online resources for research and writing.
- The Nuts and Bolts of College Writing - This online guide includes information on thinking, style, structure, evidence, mechanics, and citation styles.
- The Five Paragraph Essay - Instructions on writing a five paragraph essay for junior high school students. This site includes information on getting started, writing the essay, and editing/revising. There are also prompts for narrative, expository, and persuasive essays and a section with tips and techniques.
- Paradigm Online Writing Assistant - Information for all stages of the writing process. Also covers different types of essays. Developed by Professor Chuck Guilford of Boise State University.
- OWL - Online Writing Lab (Purdue University) - Information for students and teachers on writing concerns including ESL, grammar, documenting sources, and writing across the curriculum.
- Guide to Grammar and Writing - Includes links to guides for good grammar at the sentence, paragraph, and essay levels; samples of difference forms of communication like business letters, resumes, memos, meeting minutes, application letters, agendas, and research papers; principles of composition; interactive quizzes; Ask Grammar!; Grammar Englishs bookshelf; other online resources for writing; eminent quotables; and more.
- ERIC Digest - Writing Instruction - Current Practices in the Classroom (2000)
- ERIC Digest - Grading Students' Classroom Writing - Issues and Strategies (2000)
MaryAnn Salinger - Project Director
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