Meet Amanda Lutz. Amanda has worked with Learners Edge for a number of years as a course evaluator hearing from teachers across the globe through their work submissions. She has been in the field of education for 15 years and has served as a 6th and 3rd grade teacher, a K-4 interventionist, and an instructional coach. She has a master’s degree in literacy. Because of her education and experience, Amanda was a perfect choice when we were looking for a subject matter contributor for a new course we were writing to assist Florida teachers with license renewal. Amanda and I collaborated on Magnifying Reading Intervention Through Science and Research.
This course is filled with content to better equip you as you plan and implement literacy interventions and develop reading lessons and strategies for your learners. Course activities include investigating the Science of Reading, multi-sensory intervention, and the important differences between phonemic and phonological awareness. Participants will discover and practice explicit, systematic, and sequential approaches to reading instruction. In addition, the course includes strategies and methods to use with students with disabilities including ideas for adaptation and modification of content.
Created to meet the needs of Florida educators, the course was developed at the same time as interest was growing around the Science of Reading and structured literacy instruction. These topics were included in the course content making this course relevant for any educator that teaches early literacy skills and/or reading.
Amanda and I talked about the Science of Reading and other course related topics. Below are excerpts from our conversation.
Keely: What is the one most important concept you hope participants understand and apply to their teaching from the course?
Amanda: As I reflect on the vast topics covered in this course, the most important concept that leaps out to me is this: children learn in different ways, and we, as teachers, are responsible for always finding ways to reach each one uniquely because reading impacts everything we do. Through the resources in this course, one will experience the varying beliefs on how to best instruct learners. We can choose to lean more one way than another, but we should halt ourselves from completely shooting down an approach for we never know what it will take to reach that one learner different from all others before him.
Keely: What was your favorite resource and why?
Amanda: Favorite resource…all of them, because I picked them, right? But, if I am being forced to pick one, I’d have to say the Fish Bowl video in Module 3 is a favorite of mine. As an instructional coach, I loved seeing this one in action in classrooms. It led to interesting conversations & student-owned learning. I recommend trying it with any age of learner!
Keely: What advice would you give teachers right now (COVID times and moving forward) related to differentiation and/or unfinished learning?
Amanda: Well, I’d have to say, for starters, convert whatever paper documents you have to e-files. Secondly, and more importantly, build relationships with stakeholders in your children’s lives. We, teachers, families, community members, have to work together to teach & reach our children. In the past two years, our creative problem-solving and need to be flexible has risen to the surface. (Oh, and unrelated to reading instruction, self-care is of the utmost importance for these tirelessly dedicated teachers!)
Want to learn more about course 5150: Magnifying Reading Intervention Through Science and Research? Check out the course description:
Title: Course 5150: Magnifying Reading Intervention Through Science and Research
Graduate Credits: 3 semester credits
Grade Level: K-12+
Course Description: In this course, you will investigate the Science of Reading, multi-sensory intervention, and the important differences between phonemic and phonological awareness. Dig into the use of explicit, systematic, and sequential approaches to reading instruction and discover strategies and methods to use with students with disabilities including ideas for adaptation and modification of content. Read More >>
Wondering how this course applies to Florida license renewal?
Based on the approval of your district or state institution, this course may meet the requirements for license renewal outlined in the Just Read, Florida! Initiative and the requirements of license renewal around teaching students with disabilities (SWD).
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