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ABC order activities … These activities help your child learn letter names and the order of the

Affective learning … The affective dimensions of learning are feelings, emotions, and self-
esteem. Emotions have an important connection to memory; emotions help to store
information and also trigger its recall.

Affix … An affix is a bound morpheme that is joined before, after, or within a root or stem .

Appositive … An appositive is a noun, noun phrase, or noun clause which follows a noun or
pronoun and renames or describes the noun or pronoun; provides additional information

Automaticity … Automaticity is defined as fast, accurate and effortless word identification at
the single word level. The speed and accuracy at which single words are identified is the best
predictor of comprehension. It is well established that difficulties in automatic word recognition
significantly affect a reader's ability to effectively comprehend what they are reading.


Basal … A basal reader is a kind of book that is used to teach reading. It is based on an
approach in which words are used as a whole. The words are used over and over in each
succeeding lesson. New words are added regularly. Also called an "anthology."

Blooms Taxonomy … In 1956, Benjamin Bloom headed a group of educational psychologists
who developed a classification of levels of intellectual behavior important in learning. Bloom
found that over 95 % of the test questions students encounter require them to think only at
the lowest possible level...the recall of information. Bloom identified six levels within the
cognitive domain, from the simple recall or recognition of facts, as the lowest level, through
increasingly more complex and abstract mental levels, to the highest order which is classified as

    1.   Knowledge: arrange, define, duplicate, label, list, memorize, name, order, recognize,
       relate, recall, repeat, reproduce state.
    2. Comprehension: classify, describe, discuss, explain, express, identify, indicate, locate,
       recognize, report, restate, review, select, translate,
    3. Application: apply, choose, demonstrate, dramatize, employ, illustrate, interpret,
       operate, practice, schedule, sketch, solve, use, write.
    4. Analysis: analyze, appraise, calculate, categorize, compare, contrast, criticize,
       differentiate, discriminate, distinguish, examine, experiment, question, test.
    5. Synthesis: arrange, assemble, collect, compose, construct, create, design, develop,
       formulate, manage, organize, plan, prepare, propose, set up, write.
    6. Evaluation: appraise, argue, assess, attach, choose compare, defend estimate, judge,
       predict, rate, core, select, support, value, evaluate.


Caldecott Award … The Caldecott Medal is awarded each year to the illustrator of the most
distinguished American picture book for children by the Association for Library Service to
Children, a division of the American Library Association. The award is named in honor of
the nineteenth-century English illustrator Randolph J. Caldecott, and was originally created
as sort of the flip side of the Newbery Medal. While the Newbery is awarded to the "most
distinguished American children's book" of the previous year, the Caldecott is awarded
specifically to illustrators.

Compound word … A compound word is made when two words are joined to form a new

Critical Thinking Skills … Perhaps most importantly in today's information age, thinking skills
are viewed as crucial for educated persons to cope with a rapidly changing world. Many
educators believe that specific knowledge will not be as important to tomorrow's workers and
citizens as the ability to learn and make sense of new information. Teaching children to
become effective thinkers is increasingly recognized as an immediate goal of education.


Diagnostic testing … diagnostic reading test such as the Stanford Diagnostic Reading Test
(SDRT) is a group-administered, norm-referenced multiple-choice test that assesses
vocabulary, comprehension, and scanning skills. It provides information on student progress,
targets individual students who are in need of additional reading support, and provides data
on the effectiveness of support and intervention programs. SDRT test results provide
preliminary student placement information. The SDRT provides a grade-level equivalent for
each student's overall reading level and vocabulary, comprehension, and scanning skills. The
overall reading level is compared to the student's grade level, including month of instruction,
to determine how the student is doing compared to the expected reading level.
If the diagnostic reading test indicates that the reader is below grade level, then a more
comprehensive reading assessment must be performed, to identify whether the low score is
due to dyslexia or another cause.

Distar … DISTAR is an acronym for Direct Instruction System for Teaching Arithmetic and
Reading. The program is used particularly for historically disadvantaged and/or at-risk
students. Direct instruction is one of several highly structured methodologies for teaching
elementary, middle and high school students.

Directed Reading Activity … The Directed Reading Activity (DRA) uses teacher questions to
activate prior knowledge, create interest, and establish purpose for reading.

DR-TA … Directed Reading-Thinking Activity. DR-TA helps students to develop critical
awareness by moving them through a process that includes prediction, verification,
judgement, and extension of thought. The teacher guides reading and stimulates thinking
through the judicious use of questions. These questions prompt response through
interpretation, clarification, and application. It is vital to the success of DR-TA that the teacher
create a supportive environment and encourage free participation on the part of students.


Editing … Editing is the process of preparing language for presentation through correction,
condensation, organization, and other modifications.

Emergent reading … Literacy development is seen as emerging from children's oral
language development and their initial, often unconventional attempts at reading (usually
based on pictures) and writing (at first, scribbling) -- hence the term emergent literacy.
Within an emergent literacy framework, children's early unconventional attempts at
reading and writing are respected as legitimate beginnings of literacy.

ESL … English as a Second Language

Expository … Expository essays are written by students to demonstrate their knowledge and
understanding of a particular topic. Expository writing is a type of writing that is used to
explain, describe, give information, or inform. The text is organized around one topic and
developed according to a pattern or combination of patterns. The writer of an expository text
cannot assume that the reader or listener has prior knowledge or prior understanding of the
topic that is being discussed. Since clarity requires strong organization, one of the most
important mechanisms to improve skills in exposition is to improve the organization of the


Fluency … Reading fluency encompasses the speed or rate of reading, as well as the ability to
read materials with expression.

Fry readability graph … Edward Fry, formerly of the Rutgers University Reading Center,
created one of the most widely used, and easy-to-use readability graphs for educators.
Randomly select three 100-word passages from a book or an article. Plot the average number
of syllables and the average number of sentences per 100 words on the graph to determine
the grade level of the material.


Grade equivalent … Grade equivalent scores use a scale based on grade levels and months to
report how well students have performed. For example, if a child obtains a score on a test that
is the same as the median score for all third graders in the ninth month of school (3.9), the the
grade equivalent would be 3.9. Avoid using grade equivalent scores. Grade equivalent scores
were designed to be easily understood by parents and teachers; however, these scores are so
frequently misunderstood and misinterpreted that they usually do more harm than good.


Homonym … words that sound the same but mean something different and are spelled

Hyperbole … A hyperbole is a type of figurative language. It is often confused with a simile
or a metaphor because it often compares two objects. The difference is a hyperbole is an


Interactionist theory … Interactionist theory involves internal mental models as opposed to
external social models. Meaning-making occurs when the individual associates objects and
actions with meaning for themselves. Consequently this type of theory appears more tentative
and even negotiable.

Interactive model … Interactive teaching is giving students something to do, getting back what
they have done, and then assimilating it yourself, so that you can decide what would be best
to do next.

Invented Spelling ... As children become writers, they begin to invent spelling for the words that
they wish to put on paper. Invented spelling is sometimes referred to as "temporary spelling"
because it is used by children until they learn the conventions and rules that adults use when
they spell. Invented spelling is a developmentally appropriate step in the process of learning to
read and write. It does not interfere with a child's ability to spell correctly in later years.


Language Experience Approach (LEA) … The language experience approach supports
children's concept development and vocabulary growth while offering many opportunities
for meaningful reading and writing activities. Another benefit of the language experience
approach is the development of shared experiences that extend children's knowledge of the
world around them while building a sense of classroom community. A major purpose of
this approach is to impart the understanding that anything that can be said can be written,
and anything that can be written can be read or said.

Learning centers … Effective early childhood programs provide an appropriate physical
environment by subdividing a classroom into learning areas or centers. Such an environment
allows children to direct themselves through the arrangement of materials and equipment to
engage in meaningful learning.

Literature based reading program … Literature-based instruction is the type of instruction in
which authors' original narrative and expository works are used as the core for experiences to
support children in developing literacy. The types of activities done with the literature are the
natural types of things children and adults would do when reading and responding to any
good book. For example, it is natural to share and talk about a good book after reading it; it
is not natural to answer ten questions about the book. The teacher's role becomes one of
planning and supporting authentic learning experiences.


Mean Length Utterance ... For English, it is common to measure the stage of language
development by counting and then averaging the morphemes (words and inflections) in a
child's set of utterances, and refer to that as the mean length of utterance (MLU). The
inflections are surprisingly variable in children's utterances, sometimes present and sometimes
absent even within the same stretch of conversation.

Metacognition …Metacognition is defined as "Knowing what I know and what I don't
know." Metacognition, or awareness of the process of learning, is a critical ingredient to
successful learning. It consists of two basic processes occurring simultaneously: monitoring
your progress as you learn, and making changes and adapting your strategies if you
perceive you are not doing so well.

Metacognitive theory … a framework for teaching literacy, writing, and math skills; a
metacognitive strategy is a memorable "plan of action" that provides students an easy to
follow procedure for solving a particular problem.

Miscue analysis … Miscue analysis overall can be employed assist professionals in gaining
insight into the reading process. It involves both a quantitative and a qualitative
component. To analyze the oral reading of individual students to gain insight into the
linguistic knowledge and strategy use of readers while reading and "meaning making".
Miscue analysis also helps professionals evaluate reading material. It provides an objective
basis for determining whether a given selection should be used in a reading program and
for determining material's suitability for use by students.

Morpheme … a morpheme is the smallest linguistic unit that has semantic meaning (example:
the word cats has 2 morphemes: cat is one and the s makes it plural)


Newbery Award … The Newbery Medal recognizes the author of the most distinguished
contribution to American literature for children. Named after John Newbery, the famous 18th
century British publisher and bookseller, the award is presented annually by the Association of
Library Service to Children, a division of the American Library Association.

Nonstandard English dialect … The English used in college compositions is “standard written
English,” but this is not necessarily what students speak. Almost everyone speaks differently
from how they write. Students who are not native speakers of English or who speak dialect will
often make persistent errors of verb tense or subject-verb agreement when they write.


Overgeneralization … A classic error noticed in the acquisition of English inflections is the
overgeneralization of plurals and past tenses. In each case, when the regular inflection begins
to be mastered, it is overgeneralized to irregular forms, resulting in errors like foots, sheeps,
goed and eated. In the case of the past tense, children usually begin by correctly using a few
irregular forms like fell and broke, perhaps because these forms are frequent in the input and
the child learns them by rote. At first they may not be fully analyzed as past tenses of the
corresponding verbs fall and break. But when the child begins to produce regular past tense
endings, the irregulars are sometimes also regularized (e.g. failed and breaked). Two kinds of
overgeneralizations occur: one in which the -ed ending is attached to the root form of the
irregular verb (e.g. sing - singed) and the other in which the ending is attached to the irregular
past form (e.g. broke -broked).


Percentile … A percentile rank is typically defined as the proportion of scores in a
distribution that a specific score is greater or equal to.

Phonemic awareness … Phonemic Awareness is the awareness that language is composed into
small sounds and the ability to manipulate these sounds.
Phonics … Phonics refers to an instructional design for teaching children to read. Phonics
involves teaching children to connect sounds with letters or groups of letters. Phonemic
awareness focuses on sound units (phonemes).

Phonological awareness ... Phonological awareness involves the auditory and oral
manipulation of sounds. It does not involve printed letters. Phonological awareness refers
generally to the awareness of words, syllables, or phonemes (i.e., individual speech sounds),
whereas phonemic awareness refers only to the awareness of individual sounds in words (such
as the three phonemes /c/a/t/ in cat).

Process – writing … The Process Approach focuses on the process of writing and not the
product. The process approach is recursive in nature. This means you can do any of these
things at any time during the process of producing your text.

Pronoun antecedent … an antecedent is the noun that comes before the pronoun. A pronoun
must agree with its antecedent in three ways: number, person, and gender.


Raw score … A raw score represents the number of points a student received for correctly
answering questions on a test or for a content area. Because tests may assign different
points to questions and have a different total number of questions, the raw score is only
useful in relation to that test or content area.

Readability … Readability describes the ease with which a document can be read.
Readability tests, which are mathematical formulas, were designed to assess the suitability
of books for students at particular grade levels or ages.

Reading/writing connection … When approached as similar, related composing processes
rather than as isolated skills and behaviors, writing and reading can influence and support the
development of reading, writing, and thinking (Squire, 1983). Writers incorporate what they
have learned about language, structure and style from the texts they have encountered as
readers. They also reflect on their knowledge of texts they have read and experiences they
have had as a way of generating and synthesizing ideas for writing.

Readiness/emergent reading … Reading readiness skills are those abilities necessary for a
person to begin the process of learning to read.

Reciprocal teaching … Reciprocal teaching refers to an instructional activity that takes place in
the form of a dialogue between teachers and students regarding segments of text. The
dialogue is structured by the use of four strategies: summarizing, question generating,
clarifying, and predicting. The teacher and students take turns assuming the role of teacher in
leading this dialogue. The purpose of reciprocal teaching is to facilitate a group effort
between teacher and students as well as among students in the task of bringing meaning to
the text.

Reductionism … Reductionism is the tendency to divide knowledge into increasingly discrete
realms resistant to integration and coherent understanding.

Reliability … Test reliability refers to consistency of measurement, the extent to which a test
yields the same results for the same individual over time. Reliability is the consistency of your
measurement, or the degree to which an instrument measures the same way each time it is
used under the same condition with the same subjects. In short, it is the repeatability of your
measurement. A measure is considered reliable if a person's score on the same test given twice
is similar. It is important to remember that reliability is not measured, it is estimated.


Scanning … Skimming is reading quickly to get "gist" of a section. Scanning is reading quickly
to locate specific information.

Schema … The term schema was first used by Piaget in 1926. This learning theory views
organized knowledge as an elaborate network of abstract mental structures which
represent one's understanding of the world.

Scope and sequence … is a map of the territory of the subject; focuses on the interrelated
strands of learning; shows the development of speaking and listening, reading and viewing
and writing; is related to stages of development and/or to a particular stage of a student’s
schooling; shows progression in student development throughout the bands of schooling.

Sight words … Sight words are words that good readers should instantly recognize without
having to "figure them out." The 100 most common words actually make up about 50
percent of the material we read! The 25 most common words make up about one-third of our
written material. The Dolch sight list contains 220 words.

SQ3R … Survey, Question, Read, Recite, Review. SQ3R (Robinson, 1970) is a method for
active elaboration of material that you read, say in a textbook. It consists of 5 steps.

SSR … Sustained silent reading is a period of uninterrupted silent reading. Independent
reading time is not only enjoyable, but it also helps learners increase reading skills , and
provides quiet reading work that a class can do while the teacher gives individual help.

Stanine … one of the steps in a nine-point scale of standard scores. Stanine is short for
standard nine. The name comes from the fact that stanine scores range from a low of 1 to a
high of 9.

Structural analysis … Splitting words into parts to discover the meaning of unknown words is
called structural analysis.

Synonym … different words with identical or at least similar meanings.


USSR … Uninterrupted Sustained Silent Reading (USSR) is a common reading strategy


Validity … Validity is the strength of our conclusions, inferences or propositions. More
formally, Cook and Campbell (1979) define it as the "best available approximation to the
truth or falsity of a given inference, proposition or conclusion." In short, were we right? Let's
look at a simple example. Say we are studying the effect of strict attendance policies on
class participation. In our case, we saw that class participation did increase after the policy
was established. Each type of validity would highlight a different aspect of the relationship
between our treatment (strict attendance policy) and our observed outcome (increased
class participation). In survey work the term face validity is used if the questions look as if
they measure what they purport to measure.


Whole language … Whole language reading instruction (also known as "look-say" or "sight"
reading) is the most widely used method of teaching reading in the U.S. and many other
countries. Whole language is said to be "literature-based" because students are expected to
learn these words by "reading" them as teachers read stories aloud.

Words in Color … This effective reading program focuses on these elements of reading and
writing one's native tongue: phonemic awareness, phonics, fluency in decoding, vocabulary
expansion, text comprehension, spelling, and self-expression through writing. The
Subordination of Teaching to Learning, created by Dr. Caleb Gattegno. Dr. Gattegno's basic
principle is that if teachers encourage children's innate curiosity through multi-sensory
learning activities, the teachers can step out of the way and the students will learn far more
than they would in traditional classrooms.

Writing process … 5 steps: prewriting, writing, revising, editing and publishing


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