24 January 2015

Have you heard of Landmark??? {Plus a Freebie}

This year my parish adopted a program called Landmark.  They sent a select few teachers up north to Massachuttes the official Landmark School to receive the training over the summer.  They then came back and trained a select few from each school.   Then those few have been training the entire parish.  So this year I have been to three inservices so far learning the techniques used at Landmark.

What is Landmark you might ask?  Well, from what I have gathered so far it was a school that was designed to help reach kids who have a language learning based disabilities such as dyslexia.   It teaches them strategies for learning to read, write, stay organized better, and focus so they can have academic achievements as well.  However, these strategies can actually be applied to all types of learners.   My parish has adopted this program and we are encourage to use the strategies across the board in all grade levels and schools.   It is proven that all learners can benefit from the organizational and writing strategies.  Some of the strategies we have in place in our parish now are, we know have a specific heading that goes on ALL papers (worksheet or loose leaf - you can see an example of the heading below) and we ALL keep a Landmark binder.  The binder setup is flexible according to each grade.  You basically have the students to keep their material organized in a binder with dividers/folders for each thing.  We already had this covered in my grade because we were already using a binder.

We have also learned techniques or strategies to use in our everyday lessons.   The one thing I have noticed with the Landmark technique is that there are a lot of graphic organizers involved.  Some of the few I have been using/applying are split note taking, CHOPS during the writing process, and vocabulary word work.  Split note taking  basically means you split the paper in half and put the main idea on the left side and the detail on the right side.  The split note taking concept can also be applied to  math.   The main one I want to share with you today is Vocabulary Word Work.  It helps the learner get a better grasp of vocabulary words and their meaning because it is broken down into parts each day.

I know most of us go over vocabulary everyday.  I know I certainly do.  I also still show my power points and slide shows because the kiddos love these and like looking at the images and answering questions.  But the Vocabulary Word Work is just another quick easy way to reinforce words.  Research shows that an increase in vocabulary can increase the ease in fluent reading.   Here is an image of the Vocabulary Word Work  that I give the students on Monday.  All of the activities are completed in class and only take a short amount of time.  They are expected to have all areas completed by Friday.

On Monday we list the word and the part of speech.   On Tuesday we right the definition to the word. As of right now we are just using the definition that I give them or what is in their reader's glossary, but some of the older grades have them looking the words up on computers.   I only have a few computers in my class, so at this point we are not using the Internet to look up words.  I hope to get to that point, but it is hard when the student computer ratio does not match up.  On Wednesday the students then write a sentence with each word.  They have to then "CHOPS" their sentence {proofread}. To see what CHOPS stands for read at the top of the paper.  This is another Landmark writing strategy. Thursday the students then draw, illustrate, or label a diagram for the vocabulary word.   I leave Friday open as a day to finish and to double check over their work.   I recently just started taking this up for a classwork grade.

With all the new strategies we have been learning this year, we were asked to just pick a few a stick with them, so this is the one of main strategies I chose.  It is also one I notice a lot of others are using. If you would like you can download a free blank copy to use in your class.   I hope to share more strategies with you in the near future.


Thanks for stopping by and taking a peek!  I {heart} comments and followers!


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