Leading Literacy Instruction, Wells, Summer 2019

Course Number: EDU 5620 C03 (Graduate)
Instructor: David Wells
Location: In-person + online/independent format. In-person meeting on July 8 in Berlin, VT
Dates and Times: July 8 - August 17, 2019. In-person session from 8:30-2:30 on July 8 with the remainder of the course in an online environment.
Credits:  3 graduate credits
Tuition:  $975

Note: Course payment or purchase order of $975, payable to Castleton University, is due at the time of registration. A purchase order number can be entered into the online registration form. Please mail the check to: Financial & Registration Services, Castleton University, 62 Alumni Drive, Castleton, VT 05753. To help us ensure that your payment is applied to the correct course, PLEASE WRITE “CFS” IN THE CHECK MEMO LINE. Thank you.

Course Description

Effective literacy instruction is the foundation of student achievement.  School leadership plays a pivotal role in aligning effective instruction.  Participants in this course will increase their expertise in literacy instruction and will learn how to guide and support effective literacy instruction in their schools.  Participants will leave this course with a concrete set of goals to improve literacy instruction in their own schools.

 Audience: K-8 Administrators, Curriculum Coordinators, Literacy Interventionists, and Teacher Leaders

Course Goals

Present a framework for effective literacy instruction in grades K-8

  • Describe a professional development plan that supports balanced literacy
  • Describe the role assessment in a balanced literacy program
  • Discuss supervision and evaluation of a balanced literacy program.

 Course Objectives:

 Participants in this course will demonstrate their ability to do the following:

  • Develop an understanding of effective literacy practices in reading and writing
  • Develop an assessment plan that supports effective literacy practices.
  • Develop a professional development plan that supports effective literacy instruction.
  • Identify key criteria to look for during supervision and evaluation of a language arts classroom

Course Expectations


Workshop:  Goodby Dick & Jane: An overview of literacy best practices

Week Two:  The administrator’s role in leading effective literacy instruction


Calkins, chapters 1, 2 & 3

Forum Discussion: Describe the key building blocks for effective literacy instruction in your school.


Week Three: Professional Development: Getting everyone on the same page

Readings: Calkins, chapters 4-8

Written Reflection: Growing your knowledge of effective literacy instruction

Forum Discussion: Describe your professional development plan


Week Four:  Measuring Your Progress

Readings: Calkins chapters 10, 15, & 16

Written Reflection: Changes you will bring to your school’s data team

Forum Discussion: Watching a Reader: Feedback on Assessment


Week Five: Supervising & Evaluating an Effective Literacy Classroom

Readings: Selected videos from the following website:


Danielson, Framework for Teaching

Forum Discussion: Feedback on selected literacy classroom observations


Week Six:  Overcoming obstacles while reaching literacy goals


Calkins, chapters 13, 14, 17, 18

Written reflection: Goal Statement

Forum: What obstacles to you anticipate


Final Project:

Administrative Goal Statement: Develop a data driven goal statement outlining concrete steps taken to improve literacy instruction in your school.


It is expected that participants will be highly engaged in each classroom forum discussion.  Forum discussions will demonstrate the participants’ understanding of new information learned in each week.  Weekly Written Reflections will demonstrate the participant’s ability to apply course concepts to their own instruction. The completion of the final project will demonstrate the participant’s ability take concrete steps to improve literacy instruction in his or her school.

Required Texts

Required texts are not included in the course tuition.

Calkins, 2019. Leading Well

Calkins & Danielson, 2014. The Intersection of Danielson’s Framework for Teaching and Best Literacy Practice (web resource)

Danielson, 2013. Framework for Teaching Evaluation

For additional course information

David Wells
(802) 661-4049

For additional registration information

Bethany Sprague
(802) 468-1325

Register online now!