Talk That Teaches: Refining Teacher Language During Vocabulary Instruction

Audience: K - 5th Grade Teachers/Specialists

Presenter(s): Dana A. Robertson

Length: 80 minutes

Level: Primary and Intermediate Procedural

Session Description:

No matter which curricular materials teachers use, teachers’ instructional talk is a powerful, and often overlooked, tool when designing and implementing lessons. This session describes the important role skillful teacher talk plays in engaged literacy instruction geared to the CCSS, and focuses on how K-5 teachers can reflect on and improve the ways talk is used in their classrooms. Using classroom vignettes, videos, and templates, how-to-do-it instructions will be provided for implementing lessons in vocabulary. Participants will learn how to talk (and prompt student talk) in ways that help students set explicit learning goals and acquire and use key strategies.

Speaker Bio:

Dana A. Robertson is Assistant Professor of Elementary and Early Childhood Education at the University of Wyoming. He is a former classroom teacher, reading specialist, and literacy coach. He was a featured teacher in the video series, Teaching Reading, 3-5, produced by WGBH Television and the Annenberg Foundation. Dr. Robertson has conducted research and written on teacher talk, comprehension strategies instruction, vocabulary instruction, supporting struggling readers and writers, and teacher professional development. He is a Reading Hall of Fame Young Scholar and a recipient of the Mary Garland Early Career Achievement Fellowship Award.