Strategic Instruction: Humanities 9
I had the opportunity to collaborate with Linda Watson, a Humanities 9 teacher, and together we planned the unit: Arrival to Canada: First Contact.
The Essential Questions for the class were:
- Who were the major players of early settlement in Canada
- Where did they come from and where did they go? and
- What were the consequences of their arrival?
For Lisa and Jack, the 2 student who were modified in the class, their goals were to answer the first 2 questions. As a part of a text set, I wrote a book for these 2 students with the information they need to answer the questions.
To incorporate literacy, as an extension activity, the class also had to prepare a mind map of the information. A scaffold was made for students, as well as a template built into the book for Jack and Lisa.
Goal Area(s): social studies- terms and vocabulary, Literacy- main idea and details/mind mapping
Literacy Level(s): Emergent (red print), Transitional (Black print)
Text: Arrival to Canada
Extension Activities: Mind Map (Emergent), Mind Map (Conventional)
Strategic Instruction: Social Studies 10
This social studies 10 class was learning about supply and demand, for Sharon, however, her goal was to understand and differentiate the concepts of buy, sell, craft and goods. This also happened to be the the first lesson for everyone in the class. A great strategy for teachers who want to create accessibility and build background knowledge at the same time. Spending time on this foundational, otherwise assumed, background information, proves helpful to many students, not just those with additional learning needs. Although Sharon stayed with this goal for the unit, the rest of the class built on from there. A much easier strategy than teaching and then trying to simplify and retrofit curriculum after its been taught, or trying to modify a lesson on the fly. This book was used to support Sharon learn the new information.
The book has been differentiated for multiple learners, words in red are at an emergent text level and words in black are transitional text level.
Goal area(s): sorting and classifying, increasing vocabulary
Literacy level: emergent, transitional
Explicit Instruction: Literacy
There are great resources already out there in terms of age appropriate and interesting texts at levels accessible to all types of learners. One of those resources is News2You. News2You publishes a weekly unit on engaging topics and current events. Based around differentiated texts, this resource also develops extension activities. One additional aspect that I wanted to include, however, was a lesson that helped me see what my students already knew about the topic. With many of them having so many gaps in their learning, a background knowledge lesson also helped calibrate the group and get everyone on the same page.
In keeping with the inquiry theme, I tried to develop a prior knowledge activity adapted from the KWL strategy (What do I know, want to know and what did I learn).
Using the pictures as visual supports, students chose pictures that finished the sentence, ‘I know that Monarch Butterflies…..’ At its most basic, this was just a choice activity. But as I scaffolded the lesson, picture boards contained additional distrators, or students had to find pictures and words on their own. If additional challenge was needed, I asked students to think of their own responses without visual prompts. Once each student had a collection of pictures and words to describe their thinking, they made a title page for the unit. By the end of the lesson we had a compilation of title pages filled with words, pictures, symbols which all met the same goal!
Goal Area: Literacy-Activating prior knowledge
Literacy Level– Emergent
Support Link: News2You
Explicit Instruction: Literacy
Peter is in Grade 10 and his team wanted to work on developing his literacy skills. Being a BIG FAN of Superheroes, we made a theme incorporating this interest. We started with a book of his favourite characters and then built on from there. Because peter is an emergent reader, we included super hero toys as a support to help Peter interact with and engage with the pictures and word in the text.
As an extension word work activity, Peter used letter stamps and match letters to spell out each super hero name. Individual stamping boxes were used to support his reference matching, but we hope that we will eventually not need them. In the template attached, I have included both the letter and the word boxes. We used stamps, but yo could use markers or glue and sparkles!
Goal Area: Literacy- motivation and engagement, joint attention, matching, print referencing
Literacy Level: Emergent
Text: Superheroes book
Extension Activity: SUPERHEROES word work
Strategic Instruction: Language Arts 3
Andy, with his class, worked with a text set focused around the author Todd Parr. An Adapted text was created to match Andy’s literacy level, and his goal was to match the words to the pictures in the text. Accompanying Board Maker symbols attached with velcro supported Andy’s comprehension and interaction with the text. An augmentative communication device assisted Andy to read the predicted text, “it’s okay” on each page.
Goal Area: Literacy-Sight words, matching picture to word
Literacy Level: Later Emergent
Text:It’s Okay to be different
Visual Supports: It’s Okay to be Different