Language Learning Literacy Review

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Recommendations

  1. Consider the key elements of the L3 professional learning model for future training.
  2. Clarify the best way to program and implement the K-6 English curriculum.
  3. Clarify how best to differentiate the teaching of phonics in different contexts.
  4. Clarify the purpose of different assessment tools and how to use the data they generate.
  5. Develop a logic model and evaluation plan for a comprehensive evaluation of future program outcomes.

Principle results

While L3 relied on some research, it did not rely on the full range of research available on early literacy teaching, especially research that emphasized the use of approaches code-based teaching for early reading through explicit and systematic pedagogies.

L3 provides only limited ‘systematic’ instruction and a form of ‘explicit’ instruction that is not in line with current best practice, particularly with regard to phonetics and phonemic awareness.

Over time, L3 has evolved from a closely monitored and targeted intervention to a general literacy pedagogy suitable for any school. This shift was exacerbated by a lack of departmental alternative whole-class literacy programs from which schools could choose.

The demand for professional learning from literacy teachers has led to the use of the L3. L3 filled knowledge gaps in initial and continuing training on the basics of teaching reading and writing.

Three out of five schools reported using the L3 in 2019, and the implementation of the L3 varied widely between schools. In addition, 84% of these schools said they had adopted other programs in addition to L3. Two-thirds of schools said they had changed L3.

Teachers reported that one of the strengths of L3 was a substantial change in their knowledge, practice and confidence. Setting goals every five weeks and using data to inform practice supported teachers’ reflective practice. Many said they were impressed with the training model, especially the school-based coaching.

Teachers reported that some of the L3 strategies were time consuming and difficult to implement, with some students needing more support than the L3 offers. The implementation of L3 has also presented challenges for classroom management, with some schools reporting that students struggle with being required to work independently during L3 lessons.

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