PaulaV forwarded this great ode to balanced literacy:
When I get stuck on a word in a book,
There are lots of thing to do.
I can do them all, please, by myself;
I don't need help from you.
I can look at the picture to get a hint,
Or think what the story's about.
I can "get my mouth ready" to say the first letter,
A kind of "sounding out."
I can chop the word into smaller parts,
Like on and ing and ly,
Or find smaller words in compound words
Like raincoat and bumblebee.
I can think of a word that makes sense in that place,
Try a word or say "blank" and read on
Until the sentence has reached its end,
Then go back and try these on:
"Does it make sense?"
"Can we say it that way?"
"Does it look right to me?"
Chances are the right word will pop out like the sun
In my own mind, can't you see?
If I've thought of and tried out most of these things
And I still do not know what to do,
Then I may turn around and ask
For some help to get me through.
(Thanks to Jill Marie Warner, a reading specialist in the Ithaca City School District.)
This would be Plaintiffs' Exhibit One in the ensuing malpractice litigation.