CUSD English Language Arts Instructional Support Sessions



Signature Practices

*Foundational Reading Skills

Participants will review best practices and teaching strategies focusing on alphabetic principle, phonemic awareness, phonics, and fluency. Teachers will explore resources for whole and small group settings to enhance the instruction of reading in the kindergarten and 1st grade classroom.

ELA Blueprints

Claims and Targets

Participants will delve into the CAASPP components. The test blueprints provide critical information about the number of questions, scoring, and depth of knowledge for items associated with each assessment target. This information will guide teachers in the development of questions and performance tasks, scoring criteria, and reporting systems.

*Thinking Maps

Thinking Maps are visual representations of 8 thinking processes.  Participants will learn about the 8 Thinking Maps and how to utilize them during classroom instruction and across disciplines. This training and support can be adapted to meet beginning or intermediate needs.


*Close Reading

Participants will learn to create close reading lessons that include the use of technology, question stems, and engaging and appropriate sources.

Utilizing CAASPP Question Stems

Participants will be able to create lessons that utilize CAASPP question stems in both reading and writing. Participants will learn strategies to support students in developing critical thinking  skills required to answer constructed response questions.

Participants will need to bring a digital  device.

*Depth & Complexity Icons

Participants will learn how to incorporate the various Icons of Depth and Complexity into different content areas to provide more in-depth examination of the topic(s).

*Reading Strategies  

Participants will explore key strategies proven to increase literacy for learners. The strategies introduced will provide teachers with tools to increase subject-matter competence, comprehension, retention, review, and application.

*Student Engagement

Participants will learn various strategies to increase student engagement and active participation for a diverse group of learners.

Using Data and Strategic Resources to Determine Instructional Focus  

The training will help ensure that teachers have a clear understanding of CAASPP testing expectations. Participants will:

1.)   Learn to pull CAASPP Reports in EADMS

2.)   Analyze their claim data

3.)   Review the SBAC blueprints

4.)   Gain access to district resources that clearly communicate the connections between claims, targets, standards and question stems

5.)   Develop a strategic plan for increasing student achievement

This is an interactive training designed to give participants practical knowledge that can be easily utilized and implemented.

Participants will need to bring a digital device.

*Genre Based Writing

Participants will explore teaching strategies to connect reading and writing across the curriculum with the inclusion of the Common Core State Standards and 21st Century Skills. The session will focus on specific genre traits and how to support students in developing those traits.  Please select one of the following genres:  narrative, informative, or opinion.  

Performance Tasks

Participants will learn about the components of ELA performance tasks, their rubrics, and strategies to teach them. Participants will have  time to develop  constructed response questions  and prompts.

Participants will need to bring a digital device.

*Digital Resources

Participants will learn how to navigate and utilize district adopted digital resources to support instructional planning and delivery. In requesting this support, please specify the digital resource(s): Achieve3000, Discovery Education, or AIMSweb.  

Participants will need to bring a digital device.

   *In classroom support available for this topic.