WILMINGTON — Holmes Elementary is focused on phonics as one of many important parts to the Wilmington School District’s three-year plan around literacy.
“Because literacy is a foundational skill for every content area, our new three-year plan outlines a focus on literacy practices across all grade levels,” said Nikki Quallen, the district’s director of curriculum and instruction shares. “We are taking a close look at both practices and materials to ensure that we are providing the optimal opportunity to grow every reader.”
Teachers in grades K-3 at WCS are using the Phonics to Reading curriculum as one of the tools in building a strong foundation for literacy. This approach provides systematic and explicit instruction.
“I have loved watching our teachers increase their own understanding of how students learn to decode,” said Jen Hohenbrink, the elementary literacy coach. “Teachers are focusing on helping students not only read words in isolation, but also apply their phonics skills to reading and writing real texts.”
Students learn foundational skills and immediately apply them to reading and writing in every lesson.
According to kindergarten teacher Courtney Caparso, “In our last professional development about our new phonic resource, we learned how this resource connects with our kindergarten standards and how this will help improve fluency and blending in reading. The repetition of practicing sounds and letters is helping the students orally blend sounds to make words. The students are consistently hearing the first sounds in words and are able to write that letter.
“I have been so impressed with the growth in phonic in the first 9 weeks of school.”