At NIS we…

  • Believe that children learn to read by reading, and learn to write by writing.
  • Treat all students as readers and writers and instill enthusiasm for and enjoyment of reading and writing.
  • Explicitly teach comprehension strategies and writing “moves”.
  • Encourage student engagement by promoting choice in reading and writing.
  • Differentiate for students through gradual release of responsibility and the use of flexible groupings.
  • Provide opportunities for students to critically reflected on and improve their work in all areas of Language Arts.
  • Recognize that students’ languages and cultures are valuable resources to be tapped and incorporated into language learning.
  • Use the language of the Six Traits to reflect on and assess student writing
  • Document stand-alone writing units on Atlas planners (ie where writing falls outside the UOI).

Core Practices:

  • Encourage reading and writing in both English and mother tongue.
  • Provide daily opportunities for reading by offering The Daily Five choices of Read to Self, Read to Someone and Listening to Reading.
  • Daily Read Alouds
  • Flexible, targeted guided reading
  • Teach students how to find and identify good fit books.
  • Teach the eight research-based core comprehension strategies
  • Assess student’s reading through PM Benchmarks and Probe
  • Use mentor texts to learn about author’s craft
  • Write for authentic purposes and audiences
  • Assess student writing at the end of each unit using an agreed upon rubric
  • Use the language of the Six Traits to reflect on and assess student writing
  • Teach the genres identified on Grade Level Overviews.
  • Use Words Their Way is the basis of our Word Study Programme.
  • Handwriting Without Tears has been adopted as our handwriting programme for K2-G3 in 2017. This is explicitly taught with a focus on writing fluency and correct letter formation.



Words Their Way – Fifth Edition

The Continuum of Literacy Learning

The Daily Five








Handwriting Without Tears – Teacher Guides for K, Grade 1-4

Probe Reading Assessment

PM Benchmark Kits










Core Comprehension Strategies

Handwriting Core Practices

Reading Levels for Reporting

G1- G5 Language Arts Assessment Schedule

Reading Levels Correlation Chart

Looping Protocol