What Is Reading Apprenticeship?

Reading Apprenticeship is a professional development opportunity that serves educators in middle and high schools with a research-validated approach that promotes students' engagement and achievement in subject area literacy.

Three randonized controlled studies of Reading Apprenticeship professional development have found statistically significant gains on standardized tests in reading comprehension, biology, U.S. history, and English language arts. On many measures, students scores were well over a year ahead of the control students.

The instructional routines and approaches embedded within Reading Apprenticeship are based on a framework that describes the classroom in terms of four interacting dimensions that support learning: Social, Personal, Cognitive, and Knowledge-Building. These four dimensions are woven into subject area teaching through the Metacognitive Conversation-- conversations about the thinking processes students and teachers engage in as they read. The context in which this all takes place is Extensive Reading-- increased in-class opportunities for students to practice reading in more skillful ways.

Teachers using the Reading Apprenticeship framework regularly model disciplinary-specific literacy skills, help students build high-level comprehension strategies, engage students in building knowledge by making connections to background knowledge they already have, and provide ample guided, collaborative, and individual practice as an integral part of teaching their subject area curriculum.

As a result, students develop the literacy competencies, subject area knowledge, and the learner dispositions they need-- for school, college, careers, and life.

Extended Reading Resources

Passage Bank
You can access three free leveled passages per month.


The Why Files
Science articles for middle level students. Searchable by key words.


National Geographic Photos

Here you can search for a photo that students can "read" to support their understanding of your content.


Building a Leveled Classroom Library
This is one site to start with. It tells you every lexile level for the books they publish.


Understanding Lexile Levels This may be most useful to help parents understand lexile levels and how they affect book choice.


This site will help you to determine the lexile level of texts that you are currently using or are considering.


Science News for Kids


MeL Kids Databases
Check out KidInfobits and Advanced!


National Geographic Kids


TIME for Kids


For this site you must create an account. You can narrow down the articles by grade level ranges (3-5, 6-8, 9-10, 11-12) The articles seem high interest and current.


Read Works
The reading passages (http://www.readworks.org/books/passages) are listed in a table that includes Lexile, subject, and either a "literary" or "informational" designation.


You can limit your search by grade ranges (K-8) and subject categories (e.g. sports, science, etc.)


Stanford History Education Group
After creating a free account, you can download full lesson plans and the associated documents for units in American and World histories. All units are build around students reading of primary sources.


News ELA
This site allows you to take current articles and convert them to a variety of lexile levels. It also offers a brief comprehension check and free account.


Resources for RA Routines 

Clarifying Strategies: tools to help students notice and move beyond their confusion

Clarifying Roadblocks-Connecting-Infering Chart    

This chart might work well AFTER you have introduced and modeled each of these strategies. You could easily change out the strategies for three that are the focus of your classroom.

Clarifying Confusion

Summarizing Routines
Fish Bone Summary
Use this frame to help students to organize their thinking about the key points of an article. Students can then use their fish bones to draft a summary statement.
This is About... This is Really About... Organizer
A routine for groups to generate a summary that moves past the facts and into implications.
Most Important Words
Think Aloud Talk Stems Bookmark
A clear list to hand out, blow up and post, or tape to desks.
Metacognitive Coaching Talk Stems
I hand these out to students who are listening to their partner's think aloud. These give the students to words they need to coach their peers into higher-level thinking. These questions would also work well for a teacher to use during a whole-class debrief.
Building Schema
Give One, Get One Students first silently list what they know about a teacher-generated topic. Then students pair share or find several shoulder buddies who can "give" them a new idea.
Lesson Planning Templates Rubric
Talking to the Text