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EDUC 580 Childrens and Adolescent Literature Reflection

Artifact Description
To demonstrate professional growth gained from participating in the EDUC 580 Childrens and
Adolescent Literature, I uploaded a multimedia unit completed during coursework. This class
focused on teaching lifelong wild reading habits and an appreciation for literacy through
reading, Reading in the Wild, by Donalyn Miller, watching book trailers, videos of exemplary
teaching strategies, and discussing learning with other professionals. This learning is
documented within the multimedia unit surrounding the novel La Linea, by putting teaching
strategies learned within the course into practice through multimedia outlets. Goals of this unit
were as follows:
1. Apply knowledge gained from studying educational research and learning gained from
reading Donalyn Millers, Reading in the Wild.
2.
Reflection on professional practices within my own teaching setting, specifically how I
will/am implement(ing) gained knowledge and instructional strategies.
3.
Improvement of instructional strategies that provide and enhance habits of lifelong literacy
engagement.
4.
Improvement of student autonomy in reading and writing.
Creating an environment that promotes lifelong reading habits is something that I have always
striven for. Writing this multimedia unit and applying Donalyn Millers strategies has resulted in
professional growth for myself as an educator and increased reading engagement within my
students.
Professional Growth and Development
I am currently beginning my 5th year of teaching. I will be working as a 6th grade teacher for
the Fox C-6 School district. Prior to this position, I taught 3rd and 4th grades as well as 3-5
interventions in different locations. Becoming an expert in the area of reading instruction has
always been a professional goal for me. Before taking this course I had implemented strategies
that I believed increased reading engagement, but without the background knowledge and
confidence that a true literacy leader possesses. Taking this course has given me background
knowledge of the research supporting reading engagement strategies within the classroom. It has
also given me a new level of confidence in my knowledge as a reading teacher. I was able to
acquire new resources throughout the course, both online and within readings, such as resources
like Book Source, The Global Read Aloud, InstaGrok, and book review forms and strategies
within Millers book. I would feel comfortable teaching the created unit and also implementing
the new strategies and resources gained. This instructor and class provided many opportunities
for growth. Some of the gained knowledge is as follows:
1.
New knowledge in reading engagement and instructional strategies throughout reading
Donalyn Millers Reading in the Wild. Throughout reading Millers book, I gained new

knowledge about children and adolescent readers and reading engagement strategies such as
reading doors, reading graffiti walls, book bistros, and book talks.
2.
Improved my own adolescent literature knowledge through reading and blogging about
Adolescent novels [Evolution, Me, and Other Freaks of Nature Brande (2007), La Linea
Jaramillo (2006), The Fault in Our Stars Green (2012), and Weve Got a Job Levinson (2012)]
within a book club.
3.
Better knowledge of texts to support English Language Learners from the creation of book
lists. Within the course, a book list was created based on researched based text types that support
English Language Learners progress in literacy development. After researching books, the final
product became a resource for future teaching.
4.
Knowledge of multimedia resources gained during online classes and face-to-face
meetings. Within the course a repertoire of resources to engage adolescent learners and build
background knowledge for success, organize new learning, or synthesize understandings was
built. Within the class and readings resources such as Book Source, InstaGrok, The Global Read
Aloud, The Reading and Writing Project, TedEd, and many other resources were added to my
teaching toolbox.
Impact on the PK-12 Learner
During next school year, following participating in the Childrens and Adolescent Literacy
course and implementing new instructional strategies and resources, I foresee improved reading
engagement and reading habits. By promoting book talks, students will go from finding new
reading materials because they are told to and depending on the teacher to find their new books,
to asking peers about books and engaging in literacy discussions about shared reading
experiences. Students will go from deserting books quickly to finishing because of other wild
readers in the classroom. Students will become confident in sharing reading experiences, no
matter their reading levels. Students will go from reading little to none at home to beginning to
take books home, to practice, appointments, etc. after discovering their own reading
emergencies. All of these wild reading habits that students will engage in will in turn promote
lifelong reading habits as well as improve their reading comprehension, fluency, accuracy,
vocabulary, and writing. I foresee students reading engagement going from being an
independent engaged reading 50% of the time to being an independent engaged reader 80% of
the time. The following practices to impact my learners have been implemented:
1. Reading Engagement and Reading Habit Strategies: Students will connect with text more
deeply, will have purpose to their reading, will make future reading lists, and will participate in
literacy discussion with their peers. This will all happen due to improved instructional strategies
that include book talks, book bistros, book graffiti, book reviews, and use of multimedia to
engage students in blogging and book networking experiences.
2. Independent Reading: Students will read and complete a larger number of books both at
school and home. Putting reading engagement at the forefront of their instruction will improve
their desire to be part of the reading community. This will also cause students to become more

engaged while learning comprehension and decoding strategies to support their reading of
complex texts.
3. Student Confidence: By allowing all students at every level to participate in book talks,
quick talks, and previously mentioned strategies student self-confidence in their reading ability
will improve.
Alignment to WI Teaching Standards
Standard 6-Teacher communicate well
Throughout coursework and readings, I was able to reflect on my communication with my
students. While reflecting during the course, I realized that how we communicate as readers has
greatly changed from when I was in school. Today students need to be using multimedia outlets,
blogging, creating videos and presentations, while still communicating in traditional
conversations as well. By reading Donalyn Millers Reading in the Wild, watching videos,
blogging within a book club, and reading professional articles, I was able to practice and plan
new strategy use and create a multimedia unit to support our tech and media savvy students.
Reflecting and implementing new avenues to communicate throughout the reading community
will improve reading engagement, comprehension, and overall readiness for life in the 21st
century.
Standard 7-Teachers are able to plan different kinds of lessons
During coursework of Childrens and Adolescent Literature, I was able to enhance and plan
different types of lessons revolving around reading engagement and habits using multimedia
outlets. I was able to understand the importance of teaching reading engagement and reading
habits on their own, and instilling a pure love for reading and literacy. This course gave me the
understanding that teachers need to take the time to foster love for literacy rather than just teach
strategies without putting the literary purpose into students lives.
Standard 5-Teachers know how to manage a classroom
Throughout coursework and readings, my knowledge and understanding of how to manage a
literacy environment within any classroom has greatly improved. Within Millers book, she
provided many management forms that followed the strategies discussed in her book. Enhancing
the classroom environment through book doors, book graffiti walls, and allotting time to share,
discuss, and enjoy literature will greatly influence my future teaching. This course and readings
have reminded me of the true purpose of teaching literacy-to create people who engage with the
world through reading, who dedicate time to reading, and who discuss reading with others.
Managing the literacy block will allow all of these things to occur.
Standard 9-Teachers are able to evaluate themselves.
Within the course, I was able to reflect on my own reading habits and behaviors. Beginning the
course, I read out of necessity, to fulfill requirements for work, school, or other obligations. I
rarely read for the pure pleasure of reading. As a reading teacher, I found this sad. How will I
teach what I dont practice? While reading Millers book, I began to practice the strategies that I

intended to implement with my students. After finishing her book, I had truly transformed as an
adult reader, a reading teacher, and a person who just simply loves books! I rekindled my own
love for reading by evaluating myself as a reader. This reflection and evaluation of myself will
allow me to model what I teach, make my teaching believable, and will create more student buyin.
Standard 10-Teachers are connected with other teachers and the community
During course work I had many opportunities to connect with other teachers and the community.
During the online portion of the class, we were able to connect and blog about novels that we
were reading as a group. We also discussed key elements of Reading in the Wild as well as other
articles read throughout the course via discussion board. I also had the opportunity to share my
thoughts and opinions on topics within the face-to-face meetings held at Viterbo. All of these
experiences allowed me to grow through connecting and sharing with other educators. During
one of our face-to-face meetings we were able to connect with the community through a guest
speaker. The speaker modeled how to tell stories and engage students in the storytelling process.
He also made helpful suggestions on how to use storytelling as an avenue to writing. Overall,
the professional discourse that I was able to participate in resulted in tremendous professional
growth that will translate to classroom and student success.
Alignment to Viterbo Standards
-Hospitality-as we welcome everyone we encounter as an honored guest
Within the Childrens and Adolescent Literature course, we were challenged to read and blog
about four young adult novels that were written currently. The novels challenged my thinking.
While reading, I had to recognize where my own beliefs and attitudes were and then put those
thoughts to the side and focus on the text and author. This experience will make me a more
hospitable and culturally responsive teacher by keeping my own beliefs and attitudes out of how
I react to students beliefs, cultural differences, and attitudes. Teachers who are hospitable, not
only are more successful with students and their learning, but also show Christs love by not
judging or stereotyping books and students.