Students Thinking and Reading
What is S.T.A.R.
S.T.A.R is part of balanced literacy instruction at Haw Creek. Every child gets 30 minutes of S.T.A.R. time each day. During S.T.A.R. children are taught on their instructional reading level. The Title I staff, which consists of a certified reading specialist and six highly qualified assistants, along with the classroom assistants, the classroom teacher and the AIG teacher work together to create small reading groups that address the individual needs of the students.
Kindergarten, first and second grade students spend part of their time working with Fundations. This phonics based program provides the students with a firm foundation in phonics and word attack skills. Fundations is also used by the classroom teacher during word instruction. http://fundations.com
All grade levels use the Fountas and Pinnell guided reading library located in the Title I room behind the Media Center. Also available are Mondo Magazines, Comprehension Strategies Kits, Quick Reads, Soar to Success and the Benchmark leveled library. These materials are available for all STAR teachers to check out and include a broad range of texts on kindergarten through eight grade+ reading levels.
During S.T.A.R. we focus on broad comprehension strategies and specific reading skills. Gretchen Courtney and Stephanie Harvey provide the framework for the comprehension strategy work which includes:
During S.T.A.R. The Continuum of Literacy Learning by Gay Su Pinnell and Irene Fountas is used to promote reading growth based on the child's needs and their instructional reading level. The student's instructional reading level is determined using the Benchmark assessment system and/or the DRA2 assessment program. This is the level where a child is reading fluently with at least 95% accuracy and is able to discuss the text in a meaningful way. The Continuum provides teachers and assistants with a list of skills needed in order for the child to successfully move to the next reading level.
Mrs. Joslin, the reading specialist at Haw Creek, also uses
Fountas and Pinnell's Leveled Literacy Intervention (LLI) program throughout the day. This program was designed for children in Kindergarten through second grades. However, when needed, some children in third and fourth grade are also in the program. For more information on LLI visit the Heinemann website...
During STAR time Mrs. Threlkeld, the AIG teacher at Haw Creek, uses the Junior Great Book program with students that are identified as gifted readers in 3-5th grades. She works with half the identified students during the fall, and switches with the classroom teacher for the spring semester. The Great Books program has been around over 50 years and encourages deep critical thinking about classic literature using a shared inquiry method of instruction. More information can be found at...http://www.greatbooks.org/
In third through fifth grades we use Words Their Way one day a week during S.T.A.R. This spelling program uses "sorts" to help children recognize and understand spelling patterns. For more information on Words Their Way follow the link below.
To watch videos of Haw Creek staff and students using Words Their Way click here...