Institute on the Intersection of Dyslexia and the Reading Workshop

Wednesday, October 14 - Friday, October 16, 2020
Institute will be offered virtually through Zoom.

Grade: K-8
Featuring: Colleen Cruz, Natalie Louis, and Kara Arnold
Payment: Purchase orders for this institute can be made out to: Teachers College Reading and Writing Project, 525 W 120th Street, Box 77, New York, NY 10027

We have all heard the call from parents, policy-makers, and educators to support students with—or at risk of having—dyslexia. TCRWP has dedicated significant time to studying dyslexia over the past few years, both internally and with renowned partners such as The Child Mind Institute. This mini-institute will share new learning about how to support students with dyslexia in reading workshop.

In this institute you will learn and discuss some of the latest research about students with this learning profile. Presenters will discuss ways students may present in classrooms and the steps you can take to support these students. You will, for example, learn about the critical role of phonics and the specific type of phonics instruction necessary for students with dyslexia. Also discussed will be technology that provides greater access to students and the methods of instruction that will best support learners with dyslexia. Time will be spent exploring the structure of the workshop model and where its flexibility can be purposefully utilized to ensure students with dyslexia get what they need in the classroom. We will explore the critical role of coherence and alignment for special educators, service providers and general educators in making sure students thrive.

A portion of each day will be dedicated to learning in grade-level bands. The demands of K-2 teachers are different from those in 3-8. Participants who work with students in primary classrooms will learn how to identify which kids may be at risk and then study the supports that those students need if they are to continue learning and growing alongside their peers. We’ll share quick assessments that can quickly direct you to the teaching that students need most. For example, you’ll see how to use phonological awareness assessments to stay on top of this growth and ensure students do not end up with gaps in this necessary skill. It will be important to learn how students learn to phonic decode and orthographically map words. We’ll show you how to adjust your whole-class teaching, such as shared reading, to promote these skills and you’ll see videos of teachers coaching readers during conferring in ways that support independence with both phonic decoding and orthographic mapping.

Participants who support older students have a unique challenge. When our students hit grades three and above, deciding on the best supports and pathways can be difficult. We’ll help you answer questions like: What happens when a student is not identified until later in elementary school? Does intensive phonics support look different for a 9-year-old than a 6-year-old? What is the role of decodable texts in the upper grades? If a student was identified at an early age and received services, what, besides phonics, needs to be done to support students with dyslexia? In what ways might comprehension, fluency and writing be supported? We’ll share the most important assessments teachers can provide to students that can help you devise a trajectory forward. You’ll learn that many children in third grade or above who have difficulty reading have gaps in phonological awareness and hear how you can teach this skill to students in upper grades. We’ll help you envision ways to balance teaching decoding with teaching comprehension. For example, we’ll share how students might spend a portion of reading workshop studying phonics principles and reading books and another portion listening to audiobooks in a way that allows students to continue to strengthen their age-appropriate comprehension skills as their decoding skills catch up. Most importantly, we’ll help you to protect student dignity while supporting their budding reading identities.

This institute is meant to merge theory and research with in-classroom practice so that you can ensure all of your students grow as readers.


$650/$600 NYC DOE


This institute will be offered online, in real-time via Zoom, and will not be recorded for later distribution. We will accept attendees until the institute has reached capacity.