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Literacy workshop focuses on repeated reading and poetry

CHICOPEE The Pioneer Valley Reading Council will present its fourth "Literacy and Community" workshop for the 2009-10 academic year on March 25 at the Chicopee Elks Lodge 1849 at 431 Granby Rd. Janice DeFilipi will present a workshop "Building Fluency through Poetry, Practice and Performance."
Over the years DeFilipi has worn many hats as an elementary teacher in Agawam. Currently, she is a fourth grade teacher. In the past she served as Elementary English Language Arts Specialist (2000-2009). During this time she became certified as a Reading Specialist and was the instructor for the elementary gifted program at four elementary schools. During the summers of 1999 through 2009, she continued her literacy work as director of the district's summer reading program Camp Soar.
Repeated reading is the most researched method of improving fluency and is proven to help students acquire adequate fluency levels. Research has also found that using poetry to teach fluency is an effective way to improve students' reading fluency.
DeFilipi has found that practicing and performing poetry engages students enthusiastically in repeated readings and helps to build reading fluency. She finds that is also provides the necessary support and scaffolding that teachers need to provide effective instruction to ELL students in the areas of reading, listening, and speaking.
"In grades one through six, I have seen growth in students' reading fluency, comprehension and self-confidence that I can only attribute to the repeated reading, practice and performance of poetry. Often as teachers, we read ideas of how to help our children learn; so many times the tip is lengthy or requires materials we do not have. This teaching tip does not require expensive materials; all it requires is time, patience and the willingness to give it a try. If you do, the success you will see in your students will astound you."
Teachers from elementary to high school will leave with a packet of poetry scripts that they will be able to use in their classrooms the next day.
For further information, call Meredith Cox at 323-5524 or e-mail her at belchertown@juno.com. Join us for this timely presentation. On-site registration will be available.


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