March 9, 2009
Indiana State University's elementary, early and special education department is offering a grant-sponsored professional development course this summer to 3-12 grade level teachers so that they can learn new strategies to help students with different backgrounds and skills improve their reading abilities.
Indiana Commission for Higher Education awarded the department a two-year grant of more than $400,000 to offer a three-hour graduate course called Reading with a Difference: Differentiated Reading Instruction. Teachers will learn new teaching strategies to meet student academic needs and develop student thinking skills. The grant will pay for teacher tuition and course materials.
Lisa Cutter, assistant professor of elementary education, stated there is a need for this course after gathering information from school systems on how to improve teachers' skills.
"Every school is going to have different needs," Cutter said. "They are going to try to make themselves better aware of the population they are teaching."
The course, which may transfer into a College of Education master's program, will involve teachers participating in projects from summer through fall 2009 including interacting with guest speakers about different student needs, reading assignments focusing on strategies that can be used in the classroom, implementing strategies within their own classrooms and small group presentations about specific areas of differentiation.
The class, which will enroll 185 teachers during the course of two years, will be offered in three Indiana locations including Indiana State University from June 9-11, Richmond Community Schools June 12, 15-16, and at Indianapolis Public Schools June 29-July 1.
Teachers, who have a 2009/2010 teaching contract, can pre-register with an online application packet at ISU's College of Education Web site, http://www1.indstate.edu/coe/eese/DiffReadWorkshop.htm, by May 18 to enroll in the course.
Contact: Lisa Cutter, Indiana State University, assistant professor of elementary, early and special education, 812-237-2587 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Writer: Marcie Brock, Indiana State University, media relations intern, at 812-237-3773.
Indiana State Universitys elementary, early and special education department is offering a grant-sponsored professional development course this summer to 3-12 grade level teachers so that they can learn new strategies to help students with different backgrounds and skills improve their reading abilities.