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Literacy Glossary

A list of terms pertaining to literacy and reading.
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Literacy Glossary

  • Accuracy Rate: This is the rate, shown as a percent, at which students accurately read the text.

  • Concept Map: A concept map is a type of graphic organizer which allows students to consider relationships among various concepts. Often students are encouraged to draw arrows between related concepts enclosed in oval or other shapes.

  • Error Rate: This is a ratio of errors to words in the text.

  • Fluency: The rate and accuracy with which a person reads. Fluency results from practicing reading skills often and with a high rate of success.

  • Formative Assessment: These tests are ongoing and based on the curriculum, providing a way to monitor student progress. They can be used to place students in groups, based on instructional needs.

  • Frustrational Level: This is the level at which students are unable to read with adequate comprehension.

  • Genre: A genre is a particular type of literature, such as narratives, poetry, dramas, or fables.

  • Independent Level: This is the level at which students can read without assistance. Materials at this level should be chosen for independent reading, or fluency practice.

  • Independent Reading Inventories: An informal formative assessment that provides graded word lists and passages designed to assess the oral reading and listening comprehension.

  • Insertion: In a running record or informal reading inventory, this is a miscue in which students add another word when reading printed text. For example, if the sentence is: "The dog played," the student reads: "The happy dog played."

  • Instructional Level: This is the level at which students can read with assistance from the teacher. Materials at this level should be chosen for reading instruction.

  • Metacognition: This is thinking about one's own thinking, or being aware of one's own learning. When students are aware of how they think and learn, they can be taught to regulate their thought and learning processes.

  • Omission: In a running record or informal reading inventory, this is a miscue in which students do not read a word or words in the printed text. For example, if the sentence is: "The sky was bright blue," the student reads: "The sky was blue."

  • Onset: The part of a syllable that comes before the vowel of a syllable. The onset of the word box is /b/.

  • Phoneme: the smallest unit of sound. It distinguishes one word from another (e.g., man and fan are distinguished by the initial phoneme).

  • Phonemic Awareness: This is a type of phonological awareness that involves the awareness and manipulation of individual sounds.