READING ACROSS THE CURRICULUM
After the elementary years, students are seriously engaged in reading for learning. This process sweeps across all disciplinary domains, extending even to the area of personal learning. Students encounter a variety of informational and fictional texts, and they read texts in all genres and modes of discourse. In the study of various disciplines of learning (language arts, mathematics, science, social studies), students must learn, through reading, the communities of discourse of those disciplines. Each subject has its own specific vocabulary, and for students to excel in all subjects, they must learn the specific vocabulary of all subject areas in context.
In the middle grades, students self-select reading materials based on personal interests established through classroom learning. Students become curious about science, mathematics, history, and literature as they form contexts for those subjects related to their personal and classroom experiences. As students explore academic areas through reading, they develop favorite subjects and become confident in their verbal discourse about those subjects.
Reading across the curriculum develops students’ academic and personal interests in different subjects, as well as their understanding and expertise across subject areas. As students read, they develop both content and contextual vocabulary. They also build good habits for reading, researching, and learning. The Reading Across the Curriculum standards focus on the academic and personal skills students acquire as they read in all areas of learning.
ELA6/7/8RC1: The student reads a minimum of 25 grade-level appropriate books or book equivalents (approximately 1,000,000 words) per year from a variety of subject disciplines. The student reads both informational and fictional texts in a variety of genres and modes of discourse, including technical texts related to various subject areas.
ELA6/7/8RC2: The student participates in discussions related to curricular learning in all subject areas. The
a. Identifies messages and themes from books in all subject areas.
b. Responds to a variety of texts in multiple modes of discourse.
c. Relates messages and themes from one subject area to those in another area.
d. Evaluates the merits of texts in every subject discipline.
e. Examines the author’s purpose in writing.
f. Recognizes and uses the features of disciplinary texts (e.g., charts, graphs, photos, maps, highlighted vocabulary).
ELA6/7/8RC3: The student acquires new vocabulary in each content area and uses it correctly. The student
a. Demonstrates an understanding of contextual vocabulary in various subjects.
b. Uses content vocabulary in writing and speaking.
c. Explores understanding of new words found in subject area texts.
ELA6/7/8RC4: The student establishes a context for information acquired by reading across subject areas. The student
a. Explores life experiences related to subject area content.
b. Discusses in both writing and speaking how certain words and concepts relate to multiple subjects.
c. Determines strategies for finding content and contextual meaning for unfamiliar words or concepts.