The goal of literacy instruction in Virginia is to ensure that all children have the necessary skills to become successful readers, writers, speakers, and listeners with the critical thinking skills that are required to be successful as they progress and transition through the stages of their lives.
- State Literacy Plan (PDF)
Birth Through Grade Five Literacy
Literacy begins at the very earliest stages of development. As infants and toddlers gradually become aware of language they soon begin to take steps to interact with it. These experiences form the basis of future literacy learning.
- Elementary School English Resources – VDOE instructional resources for K-5 students, families, and educators.
- Lexile Framework for Reading – A system of determining text difficulty. Lexiles are correlated to Standards of Learning (SOL) reading assessment scores in grades 3-8.
- Virginia's Foundation Blocks (PDF) – A set of minimum standards in literacy, mathematics, science, history and social science, physical and motor skill development, and personal and social development with indicators of success for entering kindergarten.
- Center for Early Literacy Learning (CELL) – A Web site providing evidence-based early literacy learning resources.
- International Reading Association (IRA) – Literacy Resources by Topic
- National Center for Family Literacy – A national organization supporting family literacy.
- Public Broadcasting Service: PBS KIDS – Provides online games for children that promote literacy and reading.
- Smart Beginnings – A network of locally operated coalitions that are working to improve the quality of care and education for children from birth until kindergarten.
- Video workshops for teachers provide practical advice for teaching reading- from Anneberg Learner:
- Virginia Early Childhood Foundation – Provides leadership for Smart Beginnings and affiliated coalitions.
- Virginia Head Start – Provides advocacy, training, and support for individual members, member agencies, partners, and others who impact the lives of children and families
- Virginia's Office of Early Childhood Development – Focuses on helping Virginia’s children to reach kindergarten healthy and prepared for school success.
- Virginia State Reading Association – offers professional development to meet instructional needs for all levels of reading instruction.
- Zero To Three: Early Literacy Tips and Tools – A national, nonprofit organization providing information, training, and support for parents and professionals responsible for infants and toddlers.
- Florida Center for Reading Research (FCRR) Instructional Materials Search Tool – an online search tool that assists teachers in aligning instructional activities with reading research. K-5 teachers can search for instructional materials to support phonemic awareness, phonics, fluency, vocabulary, and comprehension. Begin by selecting the area of focus tab (e.g., fluency, or vocabulary), grade level from the pull-down menu, and the desired instructional element checkbox(es), then click “Show Results”.
Adolescent Literacy Through Grade Twelve
Adolescents need to apply literacy skills across all content areas. An important factor with this age group is engagement. Teachers and family members can provide the support and guidance necessary to ensure student success.
- Content Literacy Continuum (CLC) – An instructional model incorporating the research validated Strategic Instruction Model (SIM). The CLC is a coordinated & aligned school-wide approach to improve literacy for all students in secondary schools.
- Middle School Vocabulary Videos – a series of video clips with Virginia educators demonstrating vocabulary strategies and activities
- Middle School Reading Modules in Support of Project Graduation (PDF) – a series of one-hour lesson plans to enhance the teaching of reading
- Middle School Writing Modules in Support of Project Graduation (PDF) – a series of one-hour lesson plans that focus on writing instruction including setting up and using writing portfolios and revising and editing lessons to encourage the development of a strong essay
- Project Graduation English: Reading Skills (PDF) – reading modules on comprehension strategies using both nonfiction and informational texts from Web-based resources
- Project Graduation English: Writing Skills (PDF) – writing modules with strategies for developing strong essays that include examples of activities using Virginias three-domain rubric: composing; written expression; usage and mechanics
- AdLit.org – A national multimedia project offering information and resources to the parents and educators of struggling adolescent readers and writers
- Creating Active Readers (presented in partnership with WHRO) – video series allows middle school English teachers to observe and apply reading comprehension instruction into English classes
- Literacy Instruction in the Content Areas (PDF) – report of the Alliance for Excellent Education asserts the benefits of addressing literacy through core curricular subjects
- National Council of Teachers of English – promotes literacy and offers professional development resources for all grade levels
- National Writing Project – serving teachers throughout the country by providing professional development in the area of writing
- Virginia Association of Teachers of English – offers varied programs and services to meet the needs of all levels of literacy instruction
- Florida Center for Reading Research (FCRR) Instructional Materials Search Tool – an online search tool that assists teachers in aligning instructional activities with reading research. K-12 teachers can search for instructional materials to support phonics, fluency, vocabulary, and comprehension. Begin by selecting the area of focus tab (e.g., fluency, or vocabulary), grade level from the pull-down menu, and the desired instructional element checkbox(es), then click “Show Results”.
Literacy for Special Populations
Some aspects of literacy learning may pose particular challenges to students with diverse cultural and linguistic backgrounds, as well as those with special needs. Information to support these students in literacy is provided below.
- Assessing Comprehension & Communication in English State-to-State for English Language Learners (ACCESS for ELLs). English language proficiency test developed to meet requirements of federal testing and reporting of English proficiency.
- Department for the Blind and Vision Impaired – A resource for eligible individuals to obtain free library services as well as for schools to obtain instructional materials for use with blind and visually impaired students.
- Top 10 Resources on Dyslexia – A collection of resources to better understand this reading disability.
Standards of Learning Documents for English
- Standards, Curriculum Framework, Enhanced Scope & Sequence, Test Blueprints, Released Tests, Online Writing Practice Tool
Progression Charts for Reading, Writing, Grammar & Research
The Standards of Learning Progression Charts for reading, writing, grammar, and research identify the grade level at which specific skills are formally introduced in the 2010 English Standards of Learning. The progression charts provide a visual representation of the grade level at which a student should have formal instruction on specific skills. Not all skills in the English Standards of Learning are represented in these charts nor are the skill progression charts a replacement for the English Standards of Learning or the English Standards of Learning Curriculum Framework.
Reading, Writing, Grammar and Research
- Reading Skills Progression by Grade (PDF)
- Writing Skills Progression by Grade (PDF)
- Grammar Skills Progression by Grade (PDF)
- Research Skills Progression by Grade (PDF)