Disciplinary Literacy: Big Ideas
Instruction and Assessment
Students in the elementary grades are taught literacy strategies to read, write, think, and talk about texts across the curriculum. As they encounter increasingly complex texts through the grades, more specialized literacy practices are required for understanding and interpreting key concepts that reflect the demands of each discipline. This means that middle and high school students—even those who are considered effective readers—continue to need explicit instruction <p><strong>explicit instruction</strong><br /> A model of instruction in which teachers make learning visible to students and provide opportunities for group and independent practice. Explicit instruction is the foundation for the gradual release of responsibility and cognitive apprenticeship models of teaching and learning. The teacher begins by modeling and demonstrating a particular skill or practice and then allows students to practice with the teacher or peers, moving to independent application. The goal is to teach students to identify an appropriate strategy for learning, to understand how to use it, and to know when to use it for successful learning.</p> in disciplinary literacy practices to think critically about text and to answer essential questions.
The general framework for reading is structured around thinking before, during, and after reading. The teacher’s role is to determine what explicit instruction is necessary during each of these phases based on knowledge of each student as a reader: prior knowledge of the topic; understanding of key concepts; understanding ways of thinking in the discipline; and motivation for reading and learning.