TRANSFORMING STUDENT-ATHLETES INTO LIFE-LONG READERS & THINKERS : Meredith Breitling Reading Specialist Center for Student-Athlete Services Texas A&M University [email protected] “You know what makes a reader better? Confidence. I’m not there yet, but I feel better.” - Freshman Student-Athlete, Fall 2011 HISTORY 2008: Student-Athletes entered Texas A&M at lower reading levels Within one sport, average reading levels upon entrance to Texas A&M fell from 11.3 in 2007 to 7.62 in 2009. 12 11 10 9 8 7 6 5 4 2007 2008 2009 CENTER FOR STUDENT-ATHLETE SERVICES 3 Learning Specialists 2 Reading Specialists 1 Tutoring Coordinator 40 Learning Assistants 100+ Subject-Specific Tutors Common Reading Mistakes Choosing an answer because they recognize one of the words in the answer choice… not because they understand the question and answer choices. Word callers vs. readers Memorizing vs. Learning, Understanding & Applying METHODS- ASSESSMENT Nelson-Denny Reading TestALL incoming student-athletes (whole group, comprehension and vocabulary scores) Woodcock-Johnson Diagnostic Reading Battery- further assessment when needed (individualized) WJ gives feedback for specific reading skills (decoding, vocabulary, comprehension, fluency) MANDATED TESTS Accuplacer/THEA Must pass reading, writing, and math Accuplacer tests before enrolling in certain core courses Our reading program works with the student learning center to count as the student’s remedial reading or writing course METHODS- INSTRUCTION Individualized reading meetings 1-3 hours each week Structured, routine time Attendance is mandatory and enforced by coaches Loose curriculum, firm philosophy No “one size fits all” lessons! METHODS- INSTRUCTION Based on student need and interest Self-selected text: foundation of instruction Paulson (2006) “Self-selected reading for enjoyment, with all its implementation challenges, is key to the goal of creating life-long readers at the college level.” As the text is read, the instructor is able to teach - Comprehension strategies - Sight word recognition - Vocabulary - Fluency METHODS- COMPREHENSION INSTRUCTION Metacognitive reading strategies are explicitly taught through the read-aloud process Ditzel (2010) found a positive correlation between metacognitive strategy instruction and college students’ “ability to self-regulate while reading” Self-Selected Texts METHODS- INSTRUCTION Other interventions are implemented as needed such as: - Fluency passages for repeated readings - Structural analysis instruction - Phonics training METHODS- FLUENCY INSTRUCTION Short passage read for three consecutive meetings Realistic goal setting Progress is graphed for each student to track METHODSSTRUCTURAL ANALYSIS/PHONICS INSTRUCTION We’ve found that talking to them as adults and using direct phonics and structural analysis instruction is the most beneficial method Joshi, Treiman, Carreker, Moats, 2008 - “Good spelling is critical for literacy” - “Explicit instruction in language structure, and especially sound structure, is essential to learning to spell” STAGES 2 & 3 Bridge skills to reading for content-area purposes Methods for reading comprehension that are directly applied to academic reading such as study sheets, textbooks, and tests Direct practice Strategies for self-reading Reading Strategies for College and Beyond Deborah Kellner •Readers apply knowledge of reading from everyday literacy to academic texts (p24-25 Brozo) oTextbook organization (p297-298 Brozo) oPreviewing before beginning a chapter (p300 Brozo) oUsing adjunct displays (graphs, charts, tables, etc.) in text to further meaning (p3 Fisher) oUse fix-up strategies (p303 Brozo) oSummarize, take notes on textbook reading (p303-313 Brozo, p16&107 Fisher) Exiting the Program Different for each student Passing Accuplacer Scaffold to independence REPORTING & ACCOUNTABILITY End of semester progress reports Decisions related to class scheduling Planning for reading interventions the following semester READING ENHANCEMENT PROGRAM DATA- 2011-2012 READING ENHANCEMENT PROGRAM DATA- 2010-2011 Program Goals Meet students’ needs Fill the gaps that have been left by previous educational experiences Empower and uplift Encourage and strengthen confidence EDUCATE so they are ABLE! Final Notes Ever-changing Constantly adjusting and refining Different for each student Questions? Meredith Breitling [email protected] 979-862-6062 SOURCES Ditzel, S.N. (2010). Metacognitive reading strategies can improve self-regulation. Journal of College Reading and Learning, 40 (2), 45-63. England, C. (2012). [Review of the Woodcock-Johnson III(r) Diagnostic Reading Battery]. In Mental measurements yearbook with tests in print. Available from library.tamu.edu Gordon, H. C. (2012). [Review of the Nelson-Denny Reading Test]. In Mental measurements yearbook with tests in print. Available from library.tamu.edu Joshi, R.M., Treiman, R., Carreker, S., Moats, L.C. (2008). How words cast their spell: Spelling is an integral part of learning the language, not a matter of memorization. American Educator, 32(4), 6-16, 42. Lo, Y., Cooke, N.L., Starling, A.L.P. (2011). Using a repeated reading program to improve generalization of oral reading fluency. Education and Treatment of Children, 34(1), 115-140. Paulson, E.J. (2006). Self-selected reading for enjoyment as a college developmental reading approach. Journal of College Reading and Learning, 36(2), 51-58. RESOURCES Fisher, Douglas. 50 Content Area Strategies for Adolescent Literacy. Upper Saddle River, NJ: Merrill/Pearson, 2007. Print. Brozo, William G., Michele L. Simpson, and William G. Brozo. Content Literacy for Today's Adolescents: Honoring Diversity and Building Competence. Upper Saddle River, NJ: Merrill Prentice Hall, 2007. Print. Kellner, Deborah J. Reading Strategies for College and Beyond. San Diego: Cognella, 2012. Print.
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