• Wonders 2020 Goal Completion Report

    The Elementary Reading Program Selection Committee continued its work during the fall of 2019. The Committee met regularly and reviewed multiple programs in order to determine which of those programs would best provide a resource for instruction in the five pillars of literacy and meet the needs of our students in grades K-2. Early in the fall, Dr. Pam Kastner and Ms. Kirsten DeRoche, both literacy experts from PaTTAN, visited the Committee to answer questions and provide guidance related to resources that could best align with the science of reading research. Using the selection rubric developed by the National Center for Educational Evaluation as well as additional components that were deemed important to the District, the Committee considered the following criteria in the selection process:

    • Explicit Systematic Phonemic Awareness, Phonics & Morphology Materials
    • Aligned Spelling Component
    • Content aligned with speaking, listening, vocabulary, and writing development and skills
    • Aligned with reading comprehension for literary and informational texts
    • Leveled and Decodable Texts
    • Whole group with grade level texts aligned with standards
    • Materials for Instruction and Assessment
    • EdReports “Certified”
    • Incorporable by new/sub teachers
    • Culturally Diverse

    Alongside the rubric, programs were also evaluated on content, adaptability, and rigor. Seven programs received consideration for implementation. After careful deliberation, the Wonders 2020 program was selected for implementation. Although each program had strengths, there were numerous factors that led to the final decision.

    • Foundational Skills: Systematic decoding, encoding, and controlled text available for each skill.
    • Spelling words and activities are incorporated into daily lessons.
    • Models conversational routines to enhance speaking and listening skills.
    • Possesses Social/Emotional Learning Lessons.
    • Additional options for collaboration among the students via activities.
    • Developmentally appropriate, scaffolded academic vocabulary.
    • Explicit Close Reading Routines
    • Exceptional comprehensive scaffolding is evident.
    • Content is Aligned to Common Core Standards.
    • Contains a digital home component and technology for learning stations that matches foundational skills being taught in class from week to week.

    In addition to the work of the Selection Committee, additional steps were taken to ensure teachers and administrators were best equipped to meet the literacy needs of the District’s students. All members of the Selection Committee received LETRS training in the fall of 2019 and at their recommendation, all teachers in grades K-2 received training in LETRS Modules 1, 2 and 3. During the 2019-2020 school year, all elementary principals and several District Administrators completed the PaTTAN Leadership in Literacy training program, which promoted systemic change to build success in reading, and included information regarding various forms of assessment, reading support structures, and data to drive instruction. The District also launched a Literacy webpage which will provide resources and updates on literacy learning in the TESD for parents and community members.

    Implementation of the new reading resource began in the spring of 2020 as materials arrived and professional development began. The resource became part of classroom instruction for grades K-2 in the fall of 2020.

    Staff Development

    During the 2019-2020 school year, the District provided multiple professional development opportunities for teachers to enhance their instructional practices related to the five pillars of literacy. In the fall, those reading specialists and special education teachers who began the Orton-Gillingham certification process during the 2018-19 school year continued and completed the requirements for certification. Concurrently, in partnership with the Chester County IU and PaTTAN, the District provided training in LETRS modules 1, 2, and 3 for all K-2 teachers. Additionally, at the middle school level, the District purchased the Wilson program, Just Words, for the reading specialists to use as another resource for instructing their students. Three reading specialists were to attend the Just Words training in the spring, however, due to COVID-19, they will now attend in July.

    Specific to the new elementary reading resource selection and implementation, the selection committee received a presentation from Dr. Pam Kastner and Ms. Kirsten DeRoche in September of 2019. This presentation reviewed the five pillars of reading instruction and provided a frame of reference for choosing a resource that would include strong foundational skills. Once Wonders 2020 was chosen as the new resource for K-2 teachers, all teachers received initial training on the various program components. Additional training by grade level is planned for the end of the year and professional development for the fall will include both further work with the publisher’s trainer and work with the CCIU to integrate the resource into the LETRS framework as appropriate.