The mission of the Teachers College Reading and Writing Project is to help young people become avid and skilled readers, writers, and inquirers. The Teachers College Reading and Writing Project was founded and is directed by Lucy Calkins, The Robinson Professor of Children’s Literature at Teachers College. Lucy is the author or co-author of over two score of books, including Pathways to the Common Core (with Ehrenworth and Lehman) which was recently listed as #8 in the New York Times list of best-selling education books. She has also authored/co-authored The Art of Teaching Writing, The Art of Teaching Reading, Writing Pathways, and a series of books titled Units of Study in Reading and the recently released Units of Study in Opinion/Argument, Information and Narrative Writing: A K-8 Common Core Curriculum.
TCRWP reading instruction relies on research that shows that children need to read a lot of texts, with high comprehension, in order to move up levels of text complexity. TCRWP reading workshops are structured to allow for students to read (eyes on print) every day for 35-45 minutes in the reading workshop. Volume is vigilantly watched.
Each grade’s curriculum includes units which are entirely devoted to supporting students in reading to learn through nonfiction reading—about topics of high-interest to them as well as topics related to the content area curriculum.
One of the principles that inform the TCRWP Units of Study for Teaching Reading, is a strong emphasis on students gaining the practices and skills of reading comprehension, and encouraging teachers to model the strategies that will help their students to acquire and draw on a repertoire of skills. As with reading, the TCRWP advocates for long stretches of time where students are engaged in the act of writing at least four days a week for 45 minutes or longer each day.
Since its inception, the TCRWP has recognized that a “one size fits all approach” does not match the realities of the classrooms and schools in which we work, which is the reason that the instruction that is happening inside of a workshop classroom at any given moment is tailored to the student, or group sitting in front of the teacher. The structures of workshop teaching calls for teachers to adapt a responsive stance to instruction, taking their cues from children and planning instruction that articulates next steps or goals that address their needs.
To learn more please visit: http://readingandwritingproject.org
The Workshop model at New Hope Academy Charter School
Each reading and writing workshop consist of:
- Teaching Point: Address the standards in an “I can” statement.
- Connection: Activate prior knowledge and focus attention on the lesson for 1 minute.
- Mini-lesson: Teacher explicitly demonstrates the teaching point for 10-15 minutes.
- Link: Review and clarify key points
- Active Engagement: students try out the teaching point through a “turn and talk” or “stop and jot”
- Independent practice: Students work independently or in groups while the teacher is conferring, assessing individual or small groups of student readers conducting guided reading or writers for 40-50 minutes based on the mini-lesson.
- Mid-Workshop Interruption: Students are reminded of the Teaching Point, receive a compliment and or misconceptions are clarified for no more than 1 minute.
- Share: Two or three students get to share what they wrote or read, linked to the day's lesson for 1- 2 minutes.