- Blacklock is part of the Langley Secondary Family of Schools and is situated in Langley City.
- Blacklock is ‘A Leader in Me’ School; the staff believes that every person is a leader.
- Blacklock offers an integrated fine arts program to students in Kindergarten through Grade 5.
- The students work in learning pods where the BC curriculum is taught through dance, drama, music and visual art and ‘The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People’.
- Lessons and units are organized around themes, providing learning experiences for all students that are meaningful, engaging and inter-connected with each art form.
Blacklock Elementary School Student Population – June – 2017
Total Number of Students 256
Aboriginal Students 42
Special Education 35
English Language Learners 9
Inquiry Question: Year #3
In giving Kindergarten to Grade 3 students a targeted literacy program and access to technology can we increase reader engagement and therefore, oral language; story telling, and comprehension skills?
- Students are coming to school with fewer words learned, attentional weakness, phonological processing issues. Research has shown that these specific deficits greatly affect reading development.
- The staff are greatly concerned about the low reading scores at the Grade 2 and 3 level. Early intervention by targeting the phonological and attentional deficits is the key to enhancing achievement.
- In January 2017 55% of students in Grade 3 were not meeting or minimally meeting reading benchmarks.
The following school data is used to inform the school’s inquiry question:
- Cohort data for K and Grades 1, 2 and 3 in reading levels using Fountas and Pinnell.
- Teacher observations and qualitative data.
- Report Card marks and comments
- Baseline data collected through a tiered reading pilot
- By the end of Kindergarten, Grade 1, 2 and 3 all students will be fully meeting expectations with literacy.
Actions: What did we do in Year #2? What are we going to do in Year #3?
- Explored relevant District resources and utilized the support of District staff.
- Use the principles of teacher inquiry and questioning to move their teaching practice forward.
- Promote academically structured morning until 10:45 am – K – 3.
- Use a literacy app on the iPads. Invited Grade 2 and 3 students 3 mornings a week before school. Open invitation to all students.
- Implement Mind Up in the primary grades.
- Tiered Reading Program. The students reading levels were assessed and then they were placed in three general groups, exceeding, meeting or minimally meeting and not yet meeting. The students were engaged inproject based learning, focusing on writing, comprehension and literacy. These students were sub divided into a Guided Reading and a Balanced literacy group and working with the Resource Teacher giving direct interventions to address specific reading challenges. This was done three times per week for one hour.
- Rhyme time – Kindergarten and Grade One students participate in group sessions of Rhyme Time for one hour per week. Students learn traditional Mother Goose Rhymes, finger plays and action songs. Rounding out the program are some fun modern verses. Rich in all areas of language, rhymes present the sounds of vowels, consonants, inflections of punctuation, cadence, rhythm and diction. Beneath the beat and drama of rhymes are layers of sensory development and celebration of the natural world and it’s cycles. As students grow through the program they become confident leaders of their own Rhyme Time. Aural language experience of its youngest learners is enriched, paving the road to reading success.
- LL Intervention – utilizing district staff
- Fast ForWord is offered to ten students whose reading was at least 2 years below grade level
- District staff were brought in to support and model for staff working with students in the mid range group.
- Balanced Literacy Inservice – 3 x 2016/2017 Grade 1-3 Teachers & Resource. This will inform our conversation during collaboration.
What will we use to measure our success?
- Formative and summative assessments.
- Student engagement survey and interviews.
- PM Benchmark Assessments.
- Teacher satisfaction survey and interviews.
- Student qualitative responses
What resources do we have or need?
- Increased technological support in the forms of document cameras and iPads.
- Staff will create a Rubrics and checklist needed to facilitate the process and collect data.
- Release time for teacher leaders to share their knowledge with their colleagues.
- Langley Community Music School – Suzuki Violin Grades K through 3. Collaborative Performances focusing on Story Telling.
- Reading with the Seniors – 45 minutes once a week. One on one. Specifically targeting early intervention with students reading at their just right level.
- Ten students participated in Fast ForWord. These students have phonological processing difficulties, memory and attentional issues. These students were two grades below in reading and needed intense remediation with specific and individuated programing.
How are we increasing our staff capacity and collaboration?
- Staff have agreed to use the School Improvement day, Professional Development days and all Collaboration times to focus on building capacity to insure that we support all learners in achieving developmentally and grade appropriate reading levels.
How are parents becoming partners in our efforts?
- Parents will be encouraged to facilitate a home reading program. Workshop to share strategies and skills for home practice and to encourage a love of learning as a family will be provided.
- Recommendations of online reading programs.
- Ready Set Learn and PALS continue to provide these valuable workshops to our community.
- Parents began to receive training and materials to support the implementation of ‘The Leader in Me’ and ‘The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People’. The goal being that all stakeholders have a common language and set of principles for guiding our students. This will continue throughout Year 3.
APPENDIX – BLACKLOCK DATA
Grade 1 2017 49 Students of which 22 are below the benchmark of 16. Therefore, 45 % of students are not meeting the reading benchmark.
Grade 2 2017 46 Students of which 16 are below the benchmark of 22. Therefore, 35 % of students are not meeting the reading benchmark.
Grade 3 2017 37 Students of which 17 are below the benchmark of 25. Therefore, 46 %of students are not meeting the reading benchmark.
READING DATA (Grade 2 – collected at the end of May)
Total # of Students Assessed
# @ Level 21 or less
Not yet or Minimally Meeting
# @ Level 22 or above
Meeting or Exceeding