Developing a Love of Language
Literacy is the ability to identify, understand, interpret, create and communicate. In simple terms, it is our ability to read, write, listen and speak. Without these skills, everyday tasks become exceptionally difficult. Imagine trying to go about your daily life if you couldn’t read, write or clearly express your thoughts, ideas and opinions. RAISEducation recognises the importance of Literacy and strives to support students to build a strong foundation.
Literacy is a connected subject that draws on skills and knowledge from multiple areas to solidify understanding. Our individualised programs often incorporate a mix of skills as they are not separate areas. For example, awareness of the structure and sound patterns within words is important not only for writing and spelling but also a key part of being able to read.
Our Literacy programs are evidence-based and incorporate 40+ years of scientific evidence on best practice in teaching Literacy. They are tailored to the individual needs of every student and no two programs are the same just as no two students are the same. We listen carefully to the parent and/or home tutor to identify the strengths and areas for development for each child. We also conduct simple assessment tasks to identify a child’s learning need.
Although Literacy is an interconnected subject, families can identify a specific area they require more support with. Below is further information about the specific areas in Literacy:
At RAISEducation, we understand the importance of delivering learning programs that are based on up-to-date research and evidence. We are constantly updating our skills and knowledge to ensure our learning programs follow best practice and meet the individual needs of every student.
RAISEducation’s reading instruction can be split into two parts:
Decoding: An individual’s ability to apply a knowledge of letter-sound relationships to correctly pronounce written words.
Our decoding instruction has three key areas:
- Phonological Awareness: Developing an individual’s ability to focus on and manipulate individual phonemes (sounds) within spoken words.
- Phonics: Explicitly teaching the relationship between graphemes (letters) and phonemes (sounds).
- Decodable readers: Using texts that only have sounds that have been explicitly taught. This allows students to sound out words and never guess. It also supports students to develop fluency, which is an important component of reading.
Oral Language Comprehension: An individual’s ability to speak and listen with understanding.
RAISEducation has developed a range of lessons that explicitly teach students higher order vocabulary through engaging activities and games. We create opportunities for students to practise these new words in everyday situations, which improves their ability to express their thoughts, feelings and opinions and also leads to improved reading comprehension.
RAISEducation can also provide support, guidance and lesson ideas for parents and home tutors to increase the background knowledge of their child. This is absolutely vital when it comes to good reading comprehension. To demonstrate the importance of background knowledge on reading comprehension, see if you understand the following sentence and can create a mental picture in your head:
The player grabbed their hurley and chased after the sliotar.
Unless you have experience with the Irish sport of hurling, you probably thought the above sentence was gibberish and you could only extract limited meaning, even though you could competently decode (read) the words. We create opportunities for students to learn about a wide variety of topics, which improves their background knowledge, leading to improved reading comprehension.
Spelling is often viewed as a crazy, random system that makes very little sense. For a large number of people, it is seen as a difficult, nonsensical skill that will never be mastered. At RAISEducation we’re here to show you that spelling does make sense and it is defined by rules, patterns and stories that explain how it came to be.
With explicit, systematic instruction, we teach students to master the basic skills of the English language and improve their spelling. Our spelling program connects closely with our reading program and uses a wide variety of engaging learning activities to develop understanding. We spend time studying the structure of words which builds vocabulary and allows children to see the connections between word families.
WRITING (coming soon)
We are currently working on an evidence-based writing program that develops a students’ understanding and ability to construct a quality sentence, paragraph and whole text. It is important they understand how words work together as quality writing follows a different structure to everyday speech.