We have already reviewed their first three questions and answers:
- Why does the Common Core include disciplinary literacy standards?
3. But don’t disciplinary subjects have their own standards already?
This week we will discuss their next question which is:
4. If teachers in science, social studies, and other subjects are teaching disciplinary literacy, what are English teachers doing?
English teachers do have disciplinary skills they are responsible to teach. For example, literature is one of those areas. Understanding novels, short stories, poems, etc. demands a specific skills set. Figurative language and the use of symbolism are other areas of disciplinary knowledge and skills unique to the English classroom.
In addition to their own specific skills, English teachers also teach general literacy skills that can be applied across disciplines. They often teach fundamental vocabulary, reading comprehension, grammar, etc. These base skills can be transferred to any area of study; however, other teachers need to then extend on these basics within each specific discipline for ultimate student success.