- How do instructors of adults most benefit from the free resources on The Change Agent site?
- What top reading and writing practices are recommended in the magazine?
- How are CCR Standards aligned to articles?
- What is the deadline and topic for the next edition?
Leecy -- thanks so much for pointing people to that poem. I hope everyone can go find it and listen. I'll paste in the text of the poem here, so you can follow along with the audio if you find it. When I played the audio during the webinar, teachers were excited to use it in the classroom -- not just for the content but for the rich audio experience, the chance to hear an authentic voice, the opportunity to practice listening to diverse accents, etc. Let me know if you check it out and what you think.
Some Fiiiine Hair
by Sadonia Feazell
Straight from the bare bottom of my mother’s womb
my hair was very straight and clingy.
My mother thought to herself,
“My baby gonna come out with some fiiiiine hair.”
She could imagine putting it in all types of cute little styles
running her fingers through her baby’s thin, straight hair.
Weary she would become,
not yet ready to take on the shape and the color that it would
The fist pumping baby has come and the feeling of I will
has now become a teenager
with a different strand of hair—curls and afros,
not to mention the beaded braided kinky now twisted hair.
The world has no choice but to be ready
but the mother thinks she’s got this covered
with all the dyes and perms that will fry her daughter’s hair.
A solution to the madness:
let the hair grow
whatever way it’s going to grow.
Don’t try to tame it like it’s something you’re afraid of.
Love the God given hair that’s thin, thick, straight, curly,
I don’t care; this is my hair. And, yes, Momma,
Your baby’s got some fiiiine hair!
The Change Agent has about 15 free lesson packets. I put these together to mark our 20th anniversary. I dug through issues of The Change Agent and came up with creative ways to group articles into interesting lesson packets. Then I created activities for those articles aligned with the College and Career Readiness Standards. Check out all the packets, but particularly the first one: https://changeagent.nelrc.org/in-the-classroom/lesson-packets/
I noticed that one of our writers, Timothy Lovett, had written three articles for us and that it was fun to track how his writing developed over time and what he was willing to share about himself. If you start at the beginning of the packet, you'll see he writes in a kind of light-hearted way about his job in a Hallmark warehouse. Then he shares a very humorous piece about being an enthusiastic meat-eater. He uses an extended metaphor about going "hunting" for his meat at the supermarket. Finally, he shares a much more somber piece called "Day One" about his first day in prison. His previous bios. did not include the fact that he had been in prison when he wrote those pieces. By the time his third piece is published, he shares this about himself.
The activities give students a chance to dig deep into Timothy's writing -- for meaning and for style and for structure. The idea is that students will be hooked by the engaging content and by the fact that the articles are written by a peer in adult learning, and that from this platform, there will be more of a willingness to do the work on basic skills.
If you have a chance to look at the packet, I'd love to know what you think of the writing. Which article do you think might be most interesting to your students? What activities look helpful? Are there additional activities you would try?
Cynthia, thank you for the valuable comments and suggestions you shared in response to yesterday's topic! I know that people are reading your responses because we have 114 views to date. Hopefully, we'll have a few responses from members today on this critical area of adult instruction.
Today, let's focus on practice, as we reflect on the following questions:
1. In creating the lesson plans and activities that accompany articles, what major reading and writing challenges do you address to help adults prepare to pass HSE exams or enter college? I know that The Change Agent activities assist students with finding main ideas and details in articles. What other skills are emphasized in the activities that support academic development through different articles? NOTE: Those of you reading this are encouraged to drop in and comment on challenges that you hope are addressed when you select reading content for your students!
2. How do you correlate articles with CCR Standards? Do you think that instructors should share those standards with students?
Thank you Cynthia and participants here in advance for sharing your ideas! Leecy
Thanks for your questions, Leecy. For now, let me focus in on #2.
If you go to this link https://changeagent.nelrc.org/in-the-classroom/ccr/ and scroll down, you'll see a chart that lists groups of standards in the first column. In the second column, I re-write that group of standards into "everyday English." In the third column, there is a list of page numbers where you can find activities aligned to that group of standards.
Below I have copied and pasted the 4 groups of Reading anchor standards, so you can see what I'm talking about without having to go to the link.
I thought it would be helpful to teachers to have these groupings. It strikes me that some of the standards don't seem all that different from each other. So I grouped them in what felt like a logical way and pointed teachers directly to pages in the magazine that address those standards.
I have heard from teachers that it's helpful to have this kind of accessible "shortcut" so that they can check their teaching against the standards and have resources right at their fingertips for filling in on certain standards. Let me know what you think!
THE 10 ANCHOR STANDARDS FOR READING CAN BE BROKEN UP INTO 4 GROUPSAnchor Standards In Everyday English TCA Excerpts Key Ideas and Details (R.CCR.1-3) What does the text say? What does it not say? What does it mean? How can you prove it? pp. 3, 6-7, 10, 16, 23, 37, 44, 46, 47, 52-53 Craft & Structure (R.CCR.4-6) How does author use language to commu-nicate? How is the text organized? Who wrote this and how/why does that matter? pp. 22-23 Integration of Knowledge and Ideas (R.CCR.7-9) How does this connect with other sources? Does it measure up? Is it valid? pp. 36, 42-43, 45, 50-51 Range and Level of Text Complexity (R.CCR.10) Can students read widely and deeply from a broad range of high-quality texts? pp. 8-9, 24-25
That grid posted above is an excerpt from the Technology issue. But we have grids like that for all our issues going back a number of years.
We put each grid in PDF, too, so it's easy to print out and keep in a folder somewhere...
Cythina, this is a very helpful model for matching skills to CCRS. How do others here match instruction to standards? What tricks can you share with us? Leecy
Thank you, Cynthia, for sharing all of the insights and resources offered by The Change Agent, along with your helpful comments on different aspects of how reading can improve the writing skills of adult learners! Thanks to all of you who viewed the comments share in this forum. I hope that you have gained tips on how to accelerate the acquisition of skills among your adult leaners.
I hope that this discussion continues in the following days, weeks, and months, blossoming from the seeds that were sown in this ground to date. Thanks to all! Leecy