Talent Development Secondary’s English Language Arts program encompasses a variety of instructional techniques and strategies for teaching reading and writing to adolescents ranging from grades 6 to 12. The instructional frameworks and approaches incorporated in the program better equip English teachers to deliver core curriculum and/or meet the challenges of struggling readers and writers.
By design, TDS’s literacy program re-conceptualizes students’ daily literacy experiences at the secondary classroom level and supports cohorts of students exhibiting a broad range of abilities and skill sets.
Talent Development Secondary’s Literacy Initiative is a comprehensive approach to instruction, providing a variety of programs so students can build and apply a range of prior knowledge, strategies, and skill. Working collaboratively, students are encouraged to think creatively and critically in response to specific academic tasks. Teachers consistently engage students to cooperative learning to comprehend and respond to rich literature and informational texts with increasing demands.
Essential to TDS’s English Language Arts core component are collaborative and social learning skills. Students are given opportunities to work in teams to master the literacy challenges that 6th- to 12th-grade learners face, as compared to those in earlier grades. Talent Development teachers also provide students with ongoing support allowing them to take charge of their learning while managing the challenges that prepare them to move beyond high school.
Teachers understand that formative assessment is critical to monitoring student progress and targeting extra help when needed. Effective use of data is key for informing instructional practices and helping students advance their ability to become more independent readers, writers, and thinkers. As facilitators of learning, TDS’s English & Language Arts teachers work to increase students’ literacy skills to impact their ability to meet the accelerating demands of the global economy, to get well-paying jobs and to function as informed citizens.
We believe that talented, competent, caring teachers who are willing to participate in continuous professional development can promote student success when supported by a research-based literacy intervention.
Secondary students are expected to learn new words, new facts, and new ideas from reading — in all their subject areas — as well as to interpret, critique, and summarize the texts they read.
As students progress through school, literacy demands change:
Adolescents — even those who have already “learned how to read” – need systematic support to learn how to “read to learn” across a wide variety of contexts and content.
Talent Development Secondary’s Literacy Initiative rises to this challenge by helping adolescents meet the demands by experiencing a continuum of literary processes. Our Literacy Initiative addresses the following areas:
Talent Development Secondary’s curriculum and resources not only support the developmental needs of middle and high school students, but also support teachers by delivering highly engaging, non-traditional literacy lessons.
Talent Development Secondary’s middle grades English language arts (ELA) program includes:
Student Team Literature a research-based, thoroughly tested and highly effective cooperative learning approach to using TDS’s Student Discussion Guides. Teachers select titles from more than 100 high-quality, high-interest, culturally relevant trade books for which TDS Student Discussion Guides are available. Student Team Literature helps students progress beyond elementary literacy by developing proficient reading, writing, communication, and language skills by teaching effective reading strategies, extending comprehension skills, and developing fluency in reading and writing. Ongoing assessment is provided through weekly literature and vocabulary tests as well as Standardized Reading Practice Tests administered after the completion of each book. Read more…
Talent Development Secondary’s high school model includes:
Talent Development Secondary’s high school curriculum includes:
Standards-based, required English curriculum in the second semester across all grades is further supported through Student Team Literature and Talent Development Writing.
Recent research evidence has shown that reading achievement gains are significantly larger for ninth-grade students whose teachers make more frequent and stronger use of the instructional practices recommended in the Strategic Reading program of Talent Development Secondary’s Literacy Initiative.
The results come from a large, three-year study that included 64 high schools in urban, suburban, and rural locations, involving 130 ninth-grade teachers and 3,236 ninth-grade students.
Figure 1 (above) shows that students’ one-year reading achievement gains are significantly greater when their teachers are high on a scale of implementing instructional practices recommended by the Talent Development model, compared to other classes with less frequent and weaker use of the approaches. In the figure, the “low” category includes all teachers’ classes below average on the implementation scale, while the “high” category is average or above. The difference between the categories is about five months of additional gain over the year.
Figure 2 (above) compares three different conditions of teacher support on the implementation of the recommended literacy instructional approaches by ninth-grade teachers, to show that coaching has the strongest benefits.
As the Adolescent Literacy Initiative Study, conducted at Johns Hopkins University, reflects, Strategic Reading yields significant impact on student achievement. When recommended & research-based approaches are used by SR teachers, student achievement is significantly impacted: