Kings Beach Elementary Literacy Needs

Grant Applicant
Julie Otis, Reading Specialist
School Site
Kings Beach Elementary
Grant Category
Literacy
Grant Date
2020
Description (10 points)

The objective of this grant is to meet the current literacy needs of Kings Beach Elementary, focusing primarily on classroom guided reading instruction as well as accompanying take home materials. Guided reading is the cornerstone for teaching literacy, as it systematically guides students to acquire necessary reading comprehension, phonics, fluency, and vocabulary. Students must be explicitly taught to read in a small group setting at their reading instructional level. When a teacher lacks a certain number of books at a guided reading level, it poses a detrimental educational dilemma. Furthermore, students should be able to keep their guided reading materials in a book box to continue reading or reread independently at a later time. This is similar to the way that students should continue this leveled reading practice at home. Thus, teachers desire the opportunity to supply students and families with leveled literacy materials which can be sent home to further their reading acquisition. 

 

Earlier in the 2019-2020 school year, I asked teachers to fill in a document, summarizing their current literacy needs. It was brought to my attention that many teachers were lacking guided reading materials, especially in lower instructional levels, which are critical to helping students not only access the curriculum, but also to enhance it with interesting, diverse, colorful and pertinent reading materials. Furthermore, many of our teachers are lacking leveled readers to send home with families to help deepen a student’s understanding (and love of) reading in their home learning environment. 

Please see a copy of the KBE Literacy Needs Survey Attached at the end of this application.

Benefits of Program (10 points)

All students in kindergarten through fourth grade classes would benefit from this grant. All teachers gave input for their literacy needs and every teacher at our site (except transitional kindergarten) responded with a need for guided reading materials as well as materials to send home. The guided reading kits chosen for this grant are of high interest, a 50-50 mix of narrative and nonfiction, complete with accompanying guided reading lesson plans. This grant promotes explicit guided reading instructional strategies in an engaging manner, which helps students acquire necessary skills to be literate. By sending books home, this grant not only benefits students but also their families, by providing them the materials necessary to access and enhance the curriculum. 

In addition, after further analyzing the needs at our site, first through third grade teachers are in need of lower level books. These educators need to provide more guided reading opportunities for students who are below grade level and thus are needing to differentiate. Thus, first through third grade students who are at risk of not meeting reading standards would most benefit from this grant. By providing more diverse levels within all classrooms, teachers are able to benefit all students by meeting their academic needs. 

 

Success of Program (10 points)

A grant that puts more books into children’s hands is a success. A grant that puts more reading materials into a child’s home is a success. A grant that gives more books to teachers for student use, enhances the classroom. A grant that allows students to bring books home, enhances the home learning environment. 

To be more specific, there are many ways in which this grant can measure its success. Foremost, next school year (after fulfilling this grant) teachers can fill out a survey/document stating their literacy needs in regards to guided reading. If there are significantly less needs, then this grant was successful. Also, if teachers are not running out of a certain instructional level, and are able to give students copies of these books to keep in their book boxes and copies to take home, this grant was very successful in enhancing the classroom and home learning environments. Lastly, we are able to measure the success of the program by monitoring and adapting our guided reading instruction. Better guided reading instruction means more successful readers, less students requiring reading intervention, and more students committed to a lifetime of reading. 

This grant aims to increase our guided reading instruction capabilities by fulfilling literacy needs with more leveled books and take-home copies of the same books. This grant will definitely enhance both the classroom and home learning environments. 

 

Implementation (10 points)

This grant will be implemented simply and in a time-effective manner without requiring much teacher time. The guided reading kits will be purchased promptly (within 1-2 weeks of receiving funding). Upon delivery, the reading intervention teacher will distribute the materials to the teachers (within 1-2 weeks). Each teacher is receiving a kit based on her literacy needs in the classroom. The kits are ready to use and require no set-up nor sorting. The most timely part of implementing this grant, wil be that teachers must correctly label books, of course with Excellence in Education stickers, but also with teacher names so they are returned after being sent home. This process will take again 1-2 weeks to allow teachers to thoroughly mark their items. Similarly, teachers must have a very organized check out system, with tracking sheets, to determine who has borrowed the books, in case they are not brought back by students. Thus, overall, it seems that the grant will be implemented within a month or two of receiving funding (minus time for delivery from the publishing company).

It is also critical that teachers take the time to improve their guided reading instruction with these materials. By reviewing the guided reading lesson plans provided with the materials, teachers can help students improve their reading comprehension, phonics, fluency and vocabulary. Using Collaborative Team Meetings to organize, prepare, and master effective guided reading lessons will be helpful for implementation. This process is always on-going, as our teachers are always looking for ways to refine their teaching strategies to be more effective. We are lucky to have so many skilled teachers at our site who will shine in delivering these lessons! 

 

Can you share this grant with your grade level or subject team?

This grant is written to be shared with the ENTIRE school! 

Sustainability
This grant is fully sustainable. The guided reading materials will last a very long time under supervision of our teachers. Students are instructed on how to care for literacy materials at our site. Books last a long time (with an occasional piece of tape) and are always applicable to various content areas. By buying different sets for different teachers, students can read a variety of books year after year.
The send home materials are fully sustainable, as well. There are extra sets purchased for sending home, thus teachers will have enough for the classroom and home learning environments. One critical part of this grant’s sustainability is that students and parents must understand their role in protecting these items when taken home. Parents might need to sign a contract, read a letter, or have a checklist that clearly denotes the importance of receiving take-home materials. After agreeing to the teacher’s terms, and understanding the important role that they play in their child’s education, parents will be more likely to help sustain, return, care for, and LOVE these materials.
Amount Funded
$8000.00
Individual Budget Items(s)
$4400 - Mondo Kit #1 x 8
$3850 - Mondo Kit #2 x 7
$1100 - Mondo Kit #3 x 2
$550 - Mondo Kit #4 x 1
$1400 - Mondo Kit #6 x 2
$750 - Mondo Kit # 7 x 1
$1600 - Mondo Kit #8
$516 - Lef Books Publishing Spanish pre-k set of 100 books x 4
$300 - Spanish Chapter books for 3rd grade Literacy Circles
$273 - 4th Grade class set of Seed of Hope
Shipping
$1474.00
$1069.00
Other funding sources

When I shared this survey, Kyle Mohagen did not mention that there are other funding sources available. 

Notes

Thank you so much for reviewing this application! I know it is a lot of money since it is for our entire school, but rest assured that it will serve many readers.