Welcome to Content Area Literacy!

ED 120
Tuesday & Thursday 2:30-3:50 (first half of semester only)
Matthew Broda, Ph.D.
Office: Morgan 226
Office Hours: MWF 10-12, anytime by appointment
Phone: 330-263-2424 (office), 330-264-7969 (home), 330-466-5428 (cell)
Email: ude.retsoow|adorbam#ude.retsoow|adorbam

Class Online Calendar: http://ical.me.com/matthewbroda/ED120

Course Description
Students earning the AYA and multi-age licenses will address the challenges of working with struggling readers in grades 7-12, especially in the content areas. Students will spend time focusing middle and high school settings, working directly with teachers and students in the content areas and reading. In addition, candidates will study methods for helping all students read more effectively in content areas.

Required Course Readings (cheap and very practical) - Additional required readings will be distributed throughout the course

Welcome to our class Wikibi!

We are going to be doing things a little different this semester. Traditionally you are presented with a syllabus at the beginning of the semester that essentially tells you what you are going to do and when you will be doing it. For this class, however, we will be focusing on developing class content and process as a learning community. We will still have assignments, presentations, readings, and guest speakers, but we will work collaboratively to establish timelines and expectations for these class components.

Also, you may notice that this is a very different type of document than a traditional syllabus. Because we hope to create a living dynamic for the class, I felt that we needed to expand our notions of a traditional class syllabus and provide it life, make it a living thing, something that could effectively document the journey we will all take together, though on very different paths.

This Wikibi is as much an experiment in the social construction of course material as it is an opportunity for you to develop new literacy skills as well. As a content area reading course, we will be exploring a variety of literacy strategies that will help promote content literacy within your students. In addition, it is also important for us to remember that literacy is a very broad concept, one that is changing daily. To help us expand our own notions of literacy we will be using this Wikibi as a means of developing our own new media literacy capacity - pushing the boundaries of how we traditionally conceive literacy.

To begin your exploration and to enable you to take ownership over this document and make it come alive you first need to develop some basic skills. Before beginning the semester I ask that you take the time to visit the following website:


This site will walk you through some of the basic editing codes that you will need in order to become a part of this living syllabus. For many of you this will be a language acquisition process, not too different than what many of your students encounter on a daily basis when presented with new concepts and terms. Take some time to explore the site. When you are feeling adventurous, visit the Wikidot Sandbox. The sandbox is where you can practice your writing and coding without making it public. (hmm, providing students with ample, safe, yet structured opportunities to practice new skills before subjecting them to assessment - sound familiar?)

Once you feel you are ready to jump in, return to our class Wikibi and complete the Pre-Class Assignment below. You will use the "edit" link in the bottom right corner of any page to make your contribution (you will need to be logged into your Wikidot account to make any changes).

Good luck to you all! I look forward to our journey together.


Content Area Literacy - Strategy Presentations

Student teams will develop and present a 30 minute whole class presentation/lesson based on an assigned content area reading strategy. Each presentation will need to have supplemental materials that enhance the lesson's objective, as well as, reflect each content area represented in the team.

In addition, a section of the Wikibi is devoted to each of the specific strategies that you will be presenting to the class where each team will be required to create a Wikipedia-style entry for the assigned strategy that your colleagues can use as a resource. Listed below are the presentation dates and participants.

Strategy Presentation #1 - January 29, 2009
, Eva Hendrix-Shovlin, Hanna Cordray – Direct Reading-Thinking Activities (DR-TA)

Strategy Presentation #2 - February 5, 20089
Dustin Geitgey, Danielle Killinger – Question-Answer Relationship (QAR)

Strategy Presentation #3 - February 12, 2009
Zach Wisniewski, Kristine Mann, Betsy Drake – The KWL Genre

Strategy Presentation #4 - February 19, 2009
John Mullet, Carly Herman, Mark Hillegass- Writing Frames

Strategy Presentation #5 - February 26, 2009
Michael MacNeill, Josh Kime - PQ4R

Content Specialist Dialogs

To supplement the field exposure in this class, each student is required to make contact with a teacher specific to their content area in order to develop a dialog about the use of content area literacy strategies in today's classrooms. To ensure that these discussions are rigorous, insightful, and in-depth, each student is required to seek and select a scholarly article that discusses some facet of reading within his/her content area. Each student is then required to post the article, and an annotated bibliographic entry, on their personal wiki page by January 29. Requirements for this assignment are as follows:

  • Selection and posting of scholarly article by 1/29
  • Establishment of content specialist contact by 1/22 (hand in email printout)
  • Weekly rigorous, insightful, and in-depth correspondence with specialist (five weeks)
  • Hand in final correspondence packet (minimum of five) - 2/19
  • Provide content for the Content Specific Strategies page on the wiki

Strategic Teaching Plan

"Teaching strategically means being purposeful and thoughtful about planning instruction. It means analyzing how every aspect of the lesson will contribute to the instructional goal or objective. It means selecting teaching and learning strategies that will enhance student learning. It means helping students acquire the skills they need in order to be self directed, independent learners" (Barton 1998).

For this assignment, students will utilize previous curriculum developments to assess their strategic teaching abilities. Using past lesson plans, students will conduct the following assessment:

  • analysis for preparation through prereading activities
  • analysis of strategies to ensure comprehension through the use of metacognitive strategies during reading; and
  • analysis of the ability to extend and refine the new knowledge students acquired.

Once the analysis is complete, students will then reconstruct the lesson plan in a manner that corrects the findings gleaned from the strategig teaching analysis.


Your challenge is to add your name and a brief introduction to the Class Roster below and create a link to your E-portfolio, a personal blog, or other online presence you may have. If you you not yet have a presence in cyberspace you have a few options:

  • Go to http://wordpress.com and create a new blog for yourself
  • Link us to a website you feel best embodies you and your beliefs
  • You decide…

Content Area Literacy - Spring 2009 Roster

  • Matthew W. Broda - Greetings! I will be your guide through the world of content area literacy for the next seven weeks. I look forward to meeting new and seeing familar faces when the semester begins. Here is a link to my personal webpage and a link to the International Reading Association which has some great content literacy resources.
  • Ann — ¡Hola! Estoy en mi segundo año a la Universidad de Wooster, especializando en el español. For those of you who don't read Spanish, I'm a sophomore Spanish major here at the College. In seventh grade, I walked into my first Spanish class and was immediately hooked. I love the challenge and opportunity that learning a second language provides. Thanks to some amazing high school Spanish teachers of my own, I chose not only to continue to study Spanish in college, but also to work toward a teaching license. Eventually, I hope to teach at an urban high school similar to my own and share my love of language and culture with my students. If you would like to learn even more about me, please visit my e-portfolio.
  • Betsy Drake — I am a sophomore majoring in music education and specializing in string education. Obviously, I am seeking a Multi-Age licensure in Music. I have always enjoyed the outlets that my music classes in the past have offered me and I want to be able to provide future students with those opportunities. Whether this music offers a simple break from daily life or an opportunityfor a student to find their life's passion, I want to be able to address each student's individual needs and learning style in order to maximize their musical growth. I hope to apply lessons learned in this course to the process of learning to read music notation. We want all students to be literate, but I also want to see all students be musically literate in order to become independent musicians. More of my ideas on music education, as well and a some more information on me is on my e-portfolio
  • Carly Herman — Hello there! I realize that I am doing this a bit late so for starters, it was really nice meeting everyone today. As you know my name is Carly. I am a junior here at the college. My major is English with a minor in Spanish and Education. I'm from Ann Arbor, MI but grew up in Atlanta, GA. I love to travel and would love to teach in another country at some point in my life after graduating. One of the reasons that I want to be a teacher is because I firmly believe that teaching is one of the best ways to learn; I would love to, in a world with so much turmoil, inspire people to strive to learn, to communicate effectively, and be compassionate towards others and I believe that being a teacher and promoting these things inside and outside of the classroom is one of the best ways to achieve this. e-portfolio.
  • Danielle Killinger — Hello! My desire to become an art teacher comes from a combination of an immense passion for the arts that began when I was just a wee tyke and going through school receiving little support for the arts. Art wasn't a main focus in the community or in the school, and some of the teachers lacked dedication, approachability, and passion. I remember being really frustrated with the attitude towards art. I knew that it was a very important discipline, and I couldn't understand why I could see the possibilities in the wonderful world of art so clearly when others couldn't at all. I want to help students to be inspired by their world and themselves, as well as raise awareness and support for art within the community. In addition to teaching and art, I enjoy watching The Office, playing Catchphrase, monsters, childrens books, spinach artichoke dip, Australia, and octopi. If you think I'm awesome and you want to know more, feel free to take a look at my e-portfolio.
  • Dustin Geitgey — I am pursuing a career as an educator of adolescents and young adults in the field of Social Studies. I am very excited to work with young people and make a difference in their lives. Here is a link to my e-portfolio.
  • Eva Hendrix-Shovlin—Greetings and Salutations!! I'm a sophomore Music Education major here at the college of Wooster. I hope to give back a little of the joy I've experienced through music making with a career teaching music appreciation/general music in the public schools. I firmly believe that music is a facet of life that expresses our deepest humanity and has the potential to connect those across boundaries of race, ethnicity, age, gender, and other differences that seem to divide us. I hope to encourage others to explore music's illuminating possibilities to help us understand culture and therefore, ourselves. To find out more check out e-portfolio
  • Hanna Cordray — Hey everyone! I'm sure I've already met most of you, but for those of you who don't know me, I'm a senior German major here at the college, and am seeking a Multi-Age licensure. I'm also majoring in Religious Studies (and Education) and am excited to combine religion and German for my senior I.S.. I am really passionate about teaching, because I know how often school was boring for me throughout the years, and I think that I can bring something new and fun into the students' education. I am a huge advocate for creating a comfortable community atmosphere in my classroom, but I'm still learning how to make it also a place of structure and discipline. (I know that this isn't a class with a placement, but maybe we can share ideas about this kind of stuff!) If any of you feel inclined to learn more about me and my ideas about teaching, feel free to look at my e-portfolio.
  • John Mullet — I'm am currently a junior here at the college with a major in mathematics; as such, my I.S. will give me an above average risk for dependency on prescription anti-anxiety medication. Teaching young people is the thing that will keep me in my orbit, for I lack the sanity to endeavor further out into the ether of mathematical understanding. Whereas I may be cresting upon the zenith of my own knowledge, I will not drop the torch of hope that one of my students will have the courage, the strength, and the endurance to continue the good fight and carry the human race into the farthest reaches of human understanding. That is my goal, and I will strive to see it brought to fruition. If you care to know more about me beyond this reading, I invite you to delve into the pages of my e-portfolio.
  • Joshua Kime — Hello I am currently a sophomore here at the college. I am interested in obtaining licensure for the AYA Social Studies Program and I am also a History Major. I am involved with two varsity sports for the Fighting Scots including football and track. I am from Bucyrus, Ohio which is located in Northwest Ohio. I became inspired to teach from my grandparents who were both teachers for almost 35 years each. I believe that the teaching profession is a job that is for only the most motivated and strong willed people because of the work and time that is put in on a daily basis. If you wish to find out more about me, please feel free to follow the link to my e-portfolio
  • Kristine Mann — Hey! I am a Math major and am currently a junior at the college. Becoming a teacher has been my dream since I was three years old. It is the only career that I have ever considered or wanted to pursue. I have had three teachers in my education career that have had strong impacts on me, and as a teacher myself, I am hoping to impact my students in the positive way those teachers impacted me. Outside of academics, I am also a very dedicated athlete. I am pursing swimming through this college experience, and I am also interested in beomcing a coach in the future as well. If you are interested in knowing anything else about me, the link to my e-portfolio is included.
  • Mark A. Hillegass Jr. - Hello! As I have grown up throughout the years, I have been inspired by many and by God to make a difference in the lives of many people. It is through music, whether it be through performing on the saxophone to composing, or orchestrating that I can do so and to inspire others. While one day I will become a band director and will make an impact amongst several, I inspire to become a recording saxophone artist in hopes to travel and to share my music with the world! If you are interested in learning more about me and what I do, please visit my two websites on Myspace.com which will allow you to listen to my own personal saxophone recordings and compositions/orchestrations. Saxophone Website: http://www.myspace.com/markhillegassjr , Composition Website: http://www.myspace.com/markhillegassjr2 , E-portfolio: http://eportfolio.wooster.edu/eportfolios/mhillegass10/home/
  • Michael MacNeill — Hello! I am a History major and am currently a sophomore in college. I have wanted to become a teacher since I started 7th grade and met my history teacher for that year. I see history as something that you need to learn to inspire in students, instead of lecturing in front of the class for 45 minutes. I think that teachers are an important part of our society, and that influencing the youth of our country is something that shouldn't be taken lightly by anyone. Besides history and teaching, I am an avid Washington Nationals and Washington Capitals fan, being from DC myself. If you are interested in knowing anything else about me, feel free to look at my e-portfolio
  • Zachary Wisniewski — Hey! Hows it going!? So I realize that I am doing this after we already had our first class but apparently I types it up on the wrong website… or something like that. I am not that great with computers and this is all new but I think I am getting the idea. Well anyways, my name is Zack, I am a sophomore at The College of Wooster. At the present moment, I am seeking my licensure in AYA history and integrated social studies. I have always loved history, and am planning to major in it. I am from the city of Fenton, MI. I love to travel, play soccer, paintball, ski, snowmobile…etc. Please feel free to look at my E-Portfolio as well.


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