Question Detail

What are the best strategies for teaching 7th grade language arts BSIP students?

Aug 20, 2014 1:58pm

I've taught 7th/8th LA/writing for 7 years and this year I've been assigned to 7th grade BSIP. I don't want to lower my expectations for the students or "dumb down" the material, but I do know that I need better strategies for reaching students who are struggling with basic skills.

  • English Language Arts
  • 7
  • Behavior / Differentiation / Engagement


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    • Aug 27, 2014 4:35pm

      Hi Bethany-

      Learn all you can about Universal Design for Learning. It's a framework for planning instruction when you teach a wide variability of students. Although you are working toward grade level standards, your needs will need more scaffolding and more explicit instruction on executive function to be successful.

      There are a number of amazing books and web sites about UDL which you can look into to learn about all the research that supports its use in learning environments like your own. Most of this research comes out of CAST, the Center for Applied Science and Technology. You can learn about UDL on their site, here:

      I also just published a book on UDL specifically for teachers who want to implement it now. It's called UDL Now and you can pick it up from various booksellers. Here is a link to Amazon where you can read some pages for free.

      Regardless of the resource you explore, I'm fully confident that UDL will help you make this year a success and your students will be accessing rigorous standards.

      Katie Novak

      • Mar 4, 2015 6:17pm

        Have you tried cooperative learning? There are dozens of station ideas for middle school ELA on!