My project needs
As a first and second grade teacher in NW DC it is clear to me that the most important instructional objective for the children I teach is to learn how to read. Learning to read is a complicated undertaking made up of many difficult and demanding tasks. Successful readers require proficiency: correspondence of the written word to the spoken word, letter sounds and word blending, understanding that a sentence moves from left to right across the page, comprehending that language is a system of symbols used to define ideas, feelings and information. Reading success comes easier to children who enter school with a basic knowledge of language structure, and who have experience in word-rich environments. At our school, our students are not only second language learners but have had limited literacy experiences. This can be a handicap and we have made it our goal to provide our students with language-rich experiences and language-rich environments in order to facilitate the acquisition of literacy skills that are so necessary for academic achievement. One successful activity is the Image-Making Within the Writing Process. Despite the success of this process, it is expensive to supply the necessary materials. Image-Making Within the Writing Process is an innovative art-centered curriculum utilizing visual, kinesthetic and verbal modes of thinking to support the development of basic literacy. A language- and art-driven program, it is an effective way to teach second language learners the comprehension skills necessary for language acquisition and academic competence. Developed by Beth Olshansky of the Laboratory for Interactive Learning at the University of New Hampshire and validated in 1993 by the United States Department of Education Program Effectiveness Panel of the National Diffusion Network, the Image-Making Within the Writing Process is a proven effective and groundbreaking literacy program. I am requesting funds to cover the material cost for the participation of 50 students. We have already utilized the Image-Making within the Writing Process in the past. It was enormously successful. If Means for Dreams funds this project it will help us to again facilitate the children as they craft, write, illustrate and publish collage books.
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