At Bishop Woods Executive Academy, the weekly student instruction schedule is two 90 and one 45 minutes block of instruction. A natural fit for this curriculum within the existing ELA class structure for a whole class implementation would be the one 45-minute weekly learning block. Placement within the independent reading section of the existing curriculum affords students a greater range of individual choice by piquing interest and generating exploration of issues and concerns that greater awareness results in. It also provides an appearance of something extra—aside from the “regular” curriculum and perhaps something less formal. A chance for 7
graders to talk about stories and characters, and identity. This “liberating” appearance is a further attempt to create an environment for experiential learning and greater exploration of concepts, rather than a search for the “right” answer.
The structure of the current Readers and Writers Workshop implemented at Bishop Woods Executive Academy consists of the following:
Objective: This is a statement of what the student will be able to achieve as a result of the particular lesson.
Do Now: Generally, a precursor to the lesson. Often used to direct the student’s attention to where a lesson may begin or a review of past related lessons.
Direct Instruction: (I Do.) A 10-15 minute presentation of the instruction of the subject matter by the teacher. Students are expected to follow, using listening and note taking skills.
Guided Practice: (We Do.)
Teacher models for the student the lesson being taught and then the student attempts to apply the lesson taught.
Independent Practice: (You Do.)
Teacher releases the student to work independently to apply the skills taught in the lesson.
Reflection about the day’s lesson and perhaps respond to a question.
Additionally, as part of this Readers and Writers Workshop format, the New Haven curriculum divides the school year into quarters where the first and last quarter cover fiction and the middle quarters focus on nonfiction. Each quarter requires that a student read a New Haven curriculum determined Core book, and complete a major writing assignment and two performance tasks.