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Sayre Language Academy structures its literacy blocks using the Balanced Literacy framework. Through this approach reading, writing, speaking and listening instruction is based on the Fountas and Pinnell Curriculum and is customized to meet the needs of our students. 

In grades Kindergarten to 4th grade, the literacy block is 120 minutes broken up into the following components.

  • During the week, students might listen to a text read-aloud by a teacher, followed by interactive questions and discussions about the text. 
  • Teachers also provide a mini-lesson where teachers lead explicit instruction usually containing building connections to students’ background knowledge, active engagement, and linking students to the new learning objective.
  • The mini-lesson ends with the kids being sent off on their own for independent practice – students are given time to practice and incorporate the strategies they are learning in their own reading and writing.
  • A portion of the lesson features small group instruction where students work on various tasks that build vocabulary, fluency and discrete literacy skills. During this time, the teacher confers with individual students and leads guided reading groups – this provides an opportunity for teachers to individualize student learning to support and drive differentiation.
  • In grades K-2, teachers also teach explicit phonics and fluency using the Heggerty curriculum.