Michelle Thompson
Director of Literacy

Sheila Billenstein
Administrative Assistant for Learning and Teaching


Literacy is commonly referred to as reading, writing, speaking and listening. As our world relies more on visual communications, literacy also involves viewing. Thinking or meaning-making is at the core of these processes, and literacy proficiency develops over a lifetime. 

Although literacy is a core English Language Arts focus, for learners to become proficient readers and writers,  they develop their literacy in every subject class through the vocabulary, concepts, text structures, and general communication patterns used by people in that discipline.


In Pam Allyn's new book, Your Child's Writing, the author offers five keys to help children write: 

  1. Word Power  - encourage children to practice using new words by writing notes to them, and have them respond back to you in writing; create a "word jar" with your child's favorite words; talk about new words heard in songs.
  2. Read aloud - this is a great opportunity to teach kids about grammar, syntax and other structures of writing.  Use a variety of genres such as poetry, non-fiction, and even picture books.
  3. Identity - just as your child's favorite color changes, so too will their style of writing.  Exposing your child to a variety of writing styles/authors will help them develop their own writing identity. 
  4. Time - to show the importance and value of writing skills, carve out a consistent time to encourage writing. 
  5. Environment  - create an environment that encourages aspiring writers:  a surface for writing, writing tools, good lighting and a little bit of inspiration.