Close Reading Made Easy for English Language Arts

Selecting appropriate reading material for students is hard. For decades, teachers have known that quality Instruction requires a careful matching of reading materials to students. The goal of selecting materials that is neither too difficult nor too easy for students is a task that needs constant attention and adjustments on the part of the teacher. To ensure that students learn to read increasingly complex texts, teachers have to understand not only what makes a text hard but also fun and engaging. The introduction of the ELA State Standards has placed a spotlight on text complexity and the art of close reading.

This course focuses on the quantitative and qualitative factors of identifying texts that are neither too difficult nor too easy for students but rather, helps them stretch and grow as readers. We also examine how close reading of complex texts scaffolds student understanding of what they are reading at deeper levels and allows them to develop the skills necessary to read an informational text like a detective.

This interactive course is designed for job-embedded learning and practical classroom application using our virtual lesson study process. This virtual lesson study environment will help facilitate the process for teachers to better incorporate the instructional practices outlined in the English Language Arts Standards.

This course is divided into the following modules:

  1. Defining and Implications of Deeper Text Complexity
  2. Matching Readers with Text
  3. Helping Students Develop Close Reading Skills
  4. Using Text-Based Evidence and Questioning
  5. Deepening Student Understanding of Complex Text
  6. Raising the Level of Rigor in Reading





Demonstrating Knowledge of Content and Pedagogy


Engaging Students in Learning


Reflecting on Teaching