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Ideas @ Work: 10 Principle Assignment

CIERA's 10 Research-Based Principles Assignment
TE 402 Sections 1 and 3, MSU
Nell Duke, Instructor 


The purpose of this assignment is for you to practice analyzing classroom practice in terms of whether and how it reflects recommended practices in literacy education. I ask you to analyze classroom practices you have observed in your field placement in terms of the recommendations of the Center for the Improvement of Early Reading Achievement (CIERA) in Improving the Reading Achievement of America's Children: 10 Research-based Principles. My hope is that you will carry this perspective with you into your own teaching, constantly evaluating whether you and your colleagues classrooms reflect recommended practices in literacy education (and, if they don't, that you either change them or have a good reason not to).



This assignment has three major steps:

1. Read the CIERA Principles (available on the CIERA Web site at http://www.ciera.org).

2. Think about which principles (and activities listed under them) you have seen represented in your field placement classrooms. Feel free to use everything you have learned about the classroom, including: (a) the activity you observed during your 30 minutes of observation; (b) other activities you have observed; (c) activities you did not directly observe but believe occurred based on things hung on the walls, things students have shown you, etc.; (d) things you know about the daily routine of the classroom; and (e) things that the teacher has told you.

3. Write a short paper in which you identify at least three CIERA principles and describe how they are represented in your field placement classroom.



I have written an example paper and included it on the other side of this handout. In the example handout, I draw from a specific classroom activity observed, other more general observations of the classroom, things the teacher has told me, and things I know about the daily routine in the classroom. As noted above, you too should feel free to use multiple sources of information in your analysis.

Be sure to use a fictitious name for your teacher(s). (FYI--The example paper is not based on any of your field placement classrooms. It is actually based on a composite of many different classrooms I have observed and classrooms I have read about.)



This assignment will be graded on a check plus, check, check minus basis. The major questions I will consider in evaluating the assignment will be:

-Do I understand the described practices/activities?

-Do the described practices/activities fit with the identified principle?

-Are there multiple practices/activities to go with each identified principle?

-Does the document meet professional standards? (mechanics, etc.)

If all of these questions can be answered clearly and affirmatively, you can expect to receive a "check plus" for this assignment.

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