Crick Software blog

Joanne Gibbins

Improving secondary literacy

22nd January 2020

A recent report by the Education Endowment Foundation offers guidance to help improve secondary students’ literacy in all curriculum subjects. Many of the report’s recommendations are very much at the heart of our DocsPlus resources. The report talks about prioritising ‘disciplinary literacy’ (recognising that literacy skills are both general and subject-specific), providing targeted vocabulary instruction to help students access and use academic language, and breaking down complex writing tasks.

Currently on LearningGrids, we have over 500 DocsPlus Sets to support students writing in a variety of subjects and topics across the curriculum. Teachers can offer targeted vocabulary through different types of Word Banks: an A – Z Word Bank provides a wide range of vocabulary related to the topic; a Topic Tabbed Word Bank organises the vocabulary according to particular areas of focus within the topic; and a Quick Words Word Bank offers just the key or essential vocabulary related to the topic. As an example, see the McCarthyism resources.

Another way that teachers can provide support with tackling writing tasks across the curriculum is by using the WorkSpace and Voice Notes feature in DocsPlus. Students can plan, record notes and organise their writing – and even use their planners to create their own subject-specific Word Banks. See the Science Investigation Planner which students can use to make notes to prepare and plan a scientific investigation report.

See the full range of DocsPlus sets on LearningGrids to see how you could support your secondary students and their literacy skills in all areas of the curriculum.


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