Literacy Plan 2015

School Improvement Plan for Literacy

(Reviewed February 2015)
Ardscoil Mhuire Roll No: 62890m


Background A school self-evaluation of teaching and learning in Ardscoil Mhuire was undertaken during the school year 2012/2013. Literacy in IB was analysed with a view to ascertain how best to ensure that the teaching and learning in all other subjects support the acquisition of literacy skills.

Methodology A Literacy Self-Evaluation team was established. The team analysed information from a wide variety of sources including: STEN results, Leaving Cert and Junior Cert results, samples of students’ work, questionnaires from staff, parents and students, staff feedback on pilot strategies and the whole school checklist. The objective of the exercise was to ascertain what areas the school is performing well in and what areas need improving. It was decided to use 1B as a focus group as it was felt that they would be a representative sample and would accurately reflect the results of the group as a whole.

Summary of Self-Evaluation findings

Our school has strengths in the following areas: • STEN scores for reading for high achievers are above the national norm. • Attainment in the majority of subjects at Leaving Cert is above the national norm. • There is a concerted effort to develop knowledge skills and literacy during lessons • Students enjoy listening in class, especially to other students’ stories and ideas • 86% students enjoy reading and 73% enjoy writing • 65% of students read at home and 100% have access to the internet

Our school has weaknesses in the following areas: • STEN scores for average achievers are below the national norm. • Comprehension and organisational skills need to be improved • Punctuation and spelling also proved problematic • Teachers need to employ editing checklists more regularly, 38% of staff never use editing checklists • 57% of teachers never use problem solving strategies during their lessons • One third of teachers do not use comprehension strategies • Students’ lack of self confidence is hindering their participation in class • Communication with parents in terms of promoting literacy needs to be improved as one quarter of parents failed to respond to the questionnaire • 59% of students do not like speaking in class

The following areas are prioritised for improvement: • To use editing checklists to improve punctuation, presentation and organisation skills. • The development of comprehension strategies across all subject areas. • Promote oral literacy in class.

Action Plan

Strategy: To improve punctuation, presentation and organisational skills through the use of editing checklists

Target: -To improve punctuation with particular emphasis on apostrophes -To increase the knowledge regarding the appropriate use of apostrophes from 35% to 70% including the correct use of contracted words
Actions: -Checklist printed in school journal -Checklist in teachers pack -Staff training for use of checklist -Routine use of checklist in all classes -Teachers to revise punctuation rules where applicable

By Whom? All staff

Resources required: -Student journal -Staff copy -Posters -PowerPoint

How we measure: -Repeat Test -Staff questionnaire on presentation
Review date: May 2015
Strategy: Development of comprehension strategies

Target: -Promote effective comprehension skills in all students -To increase the number of students getting the main idea of a text from 64% to 80%

Actions: Teachers using: Bug technique for answering questions SQWR Determining importance Anticipation exercises

By Whom? All staff

Resources required: Graphic organisers KWL charts Laminated posters SQWR

How we measure: Repeat test
Review date: May 2015

Strategy: Promote oral literacy in class

Target: -Improve students’ attitudes towards speaking in class -Reduce the number of students who do not like to speak in class from 59% to 44%

Actions: -Staff are using pre-reading activities & promoting oral skills -Staff using ‘Read Aloud’ strategy in class

By Whom? All staff

Resources required: Pre reading resources Read aloud poster

How we measure: -Student questionnaire -Staff questionnaire

Review date: May 2015