The Arizona Department of Education is focused on the importance of teaching children to read. It is important to continue this focus into the secondary classroom, including middle school and high school. In short, literacy instruction remains every bit as important in the older grades, as it is in grades K-3.
The resources provided here are meant to assist secondary (6th-12th) ELA educators and parents in providing the best instruction for all Arizona students.
The Arizona English Language Arts Standards define the knowledge, understanding, and skills that need to be effectively taught and learned for all students to be ready to succeed in credit-bearing, college-entry courses, in the workplace, and/or in military service. The standards present a vision of what it means to be a literate person in the twenty-first century.
Grade-specific K-12 standards in Reading, Writing, Speaking and Listening, and Language translate the broad aims of The Arizona English Language Arts Anchor Standards into age- and attainment-appropriate terms. These standards allow for an integrated approach to literacy to help guide instruction.
Educators have a unique opportunity to provide a diverse selection of texts in their classrooms. There is a world of diverse texts available that provide multiple viewpoints of the world and allow for wider representation. Each of the books in the chart provided here feature protagonists and characters that are a part of underrepresented groups. There are also non-fiction texts that represent diverse voices and perspectives. Additionally, there are resources to help educators diversify their curriculum.
Secondary Reading Fundamentals - Diverse Texts in the Secondary ELA Classroom - Earn 3 PD credits and learn about how to shake up your curriculum through this asynchronous ondemand course. Learn more and sign up!
"Diverse Texts - Creating a More Inclusive Curriculum" Webinar - Thank you to everyone who joined me in Spring and Summer 2021 as we talked about diverse texts and how to implement them in our classrooms. Check out the Padlet for ideas and resources! Please also check out the recording of the "Diverse Texts: Creating a More Inclusive Curriculum" session at the 2021 Virtual Teachers' Institute and Leading Change Conference.
(Other Archived PD related to Diverse Texts listed below in Professional Learning section)
ADE's Equity Framework - The Arizona Department of Education is committed to ensuring that all Arizona students are provided the opportunity to succeed and reach their full academic potential. The department is committed to equity, diversity, and inclusion in its policies, procedures, practices, and programs. ADE Equity Framework
ADE's Office of Indian Education - The Office of Indian Education has compiled resources to help Native American teachers, students, and families, as well as educators and those serving Indigenous students.
GELN - Essential Instructional Practices for Disciplinary Literacy in the Secondary Classroom
IES Practice Guides - Institute of Education Sciences has provided a set of recommendations for evidence-based best practices to address challenges in classrooms and schools that serve the secondary grades.
Keys to Literacy Adolescent Literacy Resources - Joan Sedita of Keys to Literacy provides resources focused on adolescent literacy. Adolescent literacy encompasses the skills that must be taught to all students so they can meet increasingly challenging reading and writing demands as they move through the upper grades, as well as what needs to be done for those students who fall behind who may need intervention instruction in foundational literacy skills.
NCTE Bookstore, Adventurous Thinking: Fostering Students’ Rights to Read and Write in Secondary ELA
ReadWriteThink – Powered by NCTE. ReadWriteThink is a teaching and learning community for English Language Arts teachers from K-12th grade with resources providing free access to the highest quality standards-based practices, lesson plans, videos, activities, and apps.
WestEd Publications, Reading for Understanding: How Reading Apprenticeship Improves Disciplinary Learning in Secondary and College Classrooms
WestEd Reading Apprenticeship - What if instead of teaching around the text, lecturing, or summarizing for students, teachers engaged students in actually grappling with text - reading and talking about what it means and how they figured it out? WestEd has provided resources and materials to teach reading in a metacognitive way.
National Novel Writing Month Young Writers’ Program – National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo) takes place in November. The Young Writers’ Program supports under-18 writers and K-12 educators as they participate in the November event, and take part in smaller writing challenges year-round.
Pulitzer Center - Local Letters for Global Change: A Pulitzer Center Writing Contest, deadline is November 13, 2021
Scholastic, “17 Ways to Keep Your Middle Schooler Turning Pages” - As your kids get older, they may put reading on the back burner. Learn the best ways to keep them turning the pages with these helpful tips.
Secondary ELA Quarterly Office Hours is a virtual opportunity to collaborate, share, and learn about secondary reading and literacy information from the AZ Department of Education with secondary ELA literacy educators and leaders from around the state. Register for December 13th!
Earn PD credit and collaborate with other secondary ELA teachers! A variety of topics including: reading comprehension, writing, diverse texts, secondary MTSS, collaboration with Social Studies, and more!
K-12 Literacy Office Hours once a month - come join us to hear the latest ELA news!
Arizona Reading Fundamentals OnDemand Academy - This academy offers schools a variety of free knowledge blocks on demand. Each knowledge block includes several different sessions. Each session includes three recorded presentations and pre- and post- activities. Districts and schools are encouraged to utilize these resources as a part of a comprehensive professional learning plan that is data-driven, sustained, intensive, collaborative, job-embedded and instructionally focused.
Effective Instruction for Middle School Students with Reading Difficulties
by Carolyn Denton, Sharon Vaughn, Jade Wexler, Deanna Bryan, and Deborah Reed
This book arms language arts teachers with the lessons, strategies, and foundational knowledge they need to resolve older students' reading difficulties and increase their chances for academic success. Ideal for use with struggling readers in Grades 6 and up, this book clearly lays out the fundamentals of effective teaching for adolescents with reading difficulties.
Reading Apprenticeship from WestEd - Arizona SEED Grant
Reading Apprenticeship is an evidence-based professional learning experience focused on disciplinary literacy. Educators are engaged in a process to discover the tools and perspective to “apprentice” their students in any subject area, including secondary ELA and other subjects. This assets-based approach helps teachers develop students’ comprehension skills while also building subject-area knowledge, reader-identity, collaboration, and persistence. As part of a federal SEED grant, WestEd will be offering the opportunity for Arizona teachers to participate in a summer Reading Apprenticeship essentials course with little to no cost.
Informational Webinars: Informational webinars were presented in Spring 2021 and Spring 2022. You can access the slides from the webinar here.
Contact Information to register for the course:Access this flyer for more information on Reading Apprenticeship and to contact Dr. Daryl Michel for more questions about setting up the course for yourself, your school, or your district.
Book Study: Access the materials from the Spring 2022 Professional Learning Book Study on the Reading Apprenticeship core text.
Special Presentation - "Diverse Texts in the Classroom" - In this webinar on 6/30/2021, a panel of secondary ELA educators presented strategies and resources that they use in their own classrooms and schools to share and celebrate diverse texts and voices. We also discussed how to use these strategies and ADE’s Diverse Texts guidance to make inclusive curriculum choices in your own classroom. Recording and Slide Deck
Special Presentation - "A Face Like Mine: Connecting Classic Literature to Modern YA Books" - On 2/11/21, a panel of high school librarians discussed ways to incorporate modern diverse YA books in with teaching classic literature in the classroom, including books on mental health, LGBTQ representation, the importance of #OwnVoices, and the significance of book covers showing “a face like mine.” Click here to view the presentation
Building Background in the Virtual Secondary ELA Classroom - Building schema and background knowledge is one of the best ways to raise reading comprehension for our students. In this webinar, we explored some easy and fun ways to do this in the virtual/distance learning secondary ELA classroom. A better understanding of how building background and surfacing schema will help your students become better readers. Visit the Padlet with resources and slide deck.
Summer Series - Spotlight on Media Literacy and Sourcing - In collaboration with our ADE Social Studies team - Join trainers from ADE, and master teachers from around the state to a webinar to teach and engage with media literacy at all grade levels. Recorded presentation
"What is Media Literacy and How Do I Teach It?" - This webinar will examine what media literacy means, how do we teach students to be responsible consumers and producers of media and examine some methods and lessons you can use in your classroom. Recorded presentation
Integrating Secondary Social Studies and ELA - In collaboration with our ADE Social Studies team - How do you integrate Social Studies and English Language Arts in a secondary setting? What are the benefits of collaboration between English and Social Studies educators? This webinar demonstrated best practices to integrate Social Studies and ELA efficiently and easily. This webinar also used diverse texts to address new ways to create cross-curricular projects and lessons. Slide Deck