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Running Head: I As A Learner: Part 2

I As A Learner: Part 2
Dai’ Janai Yarber
University of Nevada, Las Vegas
Running Head: I As A Learner: Part 2
Rationale and Objectives

I currently teach at Matt Kelly Elementary School; a relatively small school on the

historic westside of Las Vegas. The student population is predominantly low income black and

brown students​.​ Although, I am a first year teach; I quickly learned that my fifth grade students

as well as many other students within the school struggled in Reading. After reviewing the

reading data, I learned that all students were performing the lowest in Reading Comprehension.

Specifically, reading comprehension of informational text. As a response, I decided to create a

student learning goal based on the common core standard RL.5.10 which states “By the end of

the year, read and comprehend informational texts, including history/social studies, science, and

technical texts, at the high end of the grades 4-5 text complexity band independently and

proficiently.” My specific classroom goal was to insure that 75% of all my students will be

reading and comprehending informational texts, including history/social studies, science, and

technical texts, at the high end of the grades 4-5 text complexity band independently and

proficiently. To reach this goal, I researched different strategies that will focus on informational

text and implemented them in my classroom. Additionally, I compiled all my resources and

findings into a virtual toolkit that can be access by students, parents, and other educators.

Collecting Literacy Strategies

To collect my reading comprehension strategies, I set a goal to review 5-10 scholarly

articles that focus on informational text. I ended up using 6 scholarly articles to complete my

research. Along with peer suggestions and the occasional Google Scholar search. My research

resulted in me increasing my use of graphic organizers, think alouds, rereading, expository texts,

and overall reading of informational text in my classroom. The peer suggestions I received
Running Head: I As A Learner: Part 2
resulted in my students getting to experiment with many different online reading programs. For

my virtual toolkit, I provided parent, student, and educator resources. Additionally, I uploaded

the scholarly articles; and provided brief summaries of each.

Implementation of Literacy Strategies

For the implementation of my reading comprehension strategies; I incorporated them into

my intervention small group time. Before implementing the new strategies; I was nervous that I

would not have time, or it would impeded on the schedule I already had in place. However, I

found that implementing them during my intervention time would allow for me to still teach my

normal math and english language arts instruction, while providing my students with the much

needed reading comprehension interventions they needed. As I did my research, I would

incorporate the new strategies I learned into my small group rotations. I also used the online

reading programs my peers suggested as a part of my technology station. On Mondays,

Wednesdays, and Fridays; every station rotation included reading comprehension practice. I ran

four stations continuously within my classroom.

Gathering Student Work

As a teacher in a one to one technology school, I took advantage of the use of technology

in my classroom to collect student work and data. Gathering student data online made keeping

track of my students growth and progress so much easier. Many of the assignments I assigned to

my students, was assigned on Google classroom; Readworks.Org, or done on Additionally, I monitored their work on the peer suggested site that I linked on my

virtual toolkit.

Creating a Website Portfolio

Running Head: I As A Learner: Part 2
Creating a functional website was not an easy task. I had many visions of what I wanted

my virtual toolkit to look like. Many of those ideas, I could not being to life. I played with many

different website creators before I decided to use Weebly to create my toolkit. Ultimately, the

precreated layouts were the deciding factor. They were sleek and easy to edit. Although, my

virtual toolkit does not look like the visions I imagined when I was first assigned the task; what I

did create I believe is a organized, easy to use site that can navigated by all those who it was

intended for.

Overall Reflection

Reaching my goals were challenging. I set many different goals this semester; specially

for the CIE course and for my classroom. My goal for the CIE course was to research and

implement reading intervention strategies that would help develop my students ability to read

and comprehend grade level informational texts. Additionally, I set a goal to create a virtual

toolkit so that I can share my research findings and assessment results with students, parents, and

other educators. However, I feel that my student learning goal was more challenging; moving the

needle of achievement from a class with almost no one being able to comprehend informational

texts to a class with 75% achievement took a lot of hard work and dedication. Throughout this

time, I had many successes and many failures; but through it all I enjoyed the experience. While

trying to complete my research goal of reviewing 5-10 scholarly-reviewed articles about teaching

strategies that focus on informational texts; I came across many different strategies; many of

which I tried in my classroom and many of which I would never try in my classroom. Ultimately,

I believe the recommendations I received from my peers had the biggest effects on my students
Running Head: I As A Learner: Part 2
growth and progress. Furthermore, I gained many great resources that I can and will continue to

use in my many years to come as an educator.

Throughout the semester, my students demonstrated extreme growth in their reading

comprehension skills. Through their ability to read and comprehend grade level informational

text I believe they will have a better outcome in the future. My goal was never just to prepare my

students for the end of the year standardized test; (although that is part of it) I made it very clear

that their achievement in reading comprehension was so they can obtain the ability to

independently read and comprehend complex and rigorous informational text; specifically so that

they can be college and career ready. I understand that as an educator, my job is more than just

preparing students for standardized test or the next grade level. Hopefully, my virtual toolkit is a

testament to this. My hopes are that the toolkit I created will reflect all the hard work that my

students and I have done throughout this school year; as well as provide students, parents, and

educators with strategies that will continue to increase the reading comprehension skills for the

years to come.
Running Head: I As A Learner: Part 2

Baker, L., Derher, M., Shiplet, A., Beall, L., Voelker, A., Garrett, A., Schugar, H.,

Finger-Elem, M., (2011).Children’s comprehension of informational text: Reading, engaging,

and learning. International Electronic journal of Elementary education, ​4 (​ 1), 197-227.

Coiro, J., & Dobler, E. (2007). Exploring the online reading comprehension strategies used by

sixth-grade skilled readers to search for and locate information on the Internet. ​Reading

research quarterly ,​ ​42 (​ 2),214-257

Ermis, S. (2008).Using graphic organizers to facilitate elementary students comprehension of

informational text. ​ College Reading Association Yearbook,​ ​29 (​ 1), 101-116.

Hedin, L., & Conderman, G. (2010). Teaching students to comprehend informational text

through rereading. ​The Reading Teacher,​ ​63 (​ 7), 556-565.

Kucan, L., & Beck, I. (1997).Thinking aloud and reading comprehension Research: Inquiry,

instruction and Social Interaction. ​ Review of Educational Research​, ​67 ​(3), 1-31.

Spries, H., & Donley, J (1998). Prior Knowledge Activation: Inducing Engagement with

informational texts. ​Journal of Educational Psychology,​ 1-13