Leveraging Diverse and Complex Text in the Classroom

  • Description
  • Files

Dr. Alfred W. Tatum once said, “out of all the texts in the world, why do I want to put this text in front of my students at this time?” We know that students do not read or write in a vacuum - they spend time in literacy classrooms developing their reading, writing, speaking and listening skills in response to and while making sense of texts and developing their own critical lens. How can we ensure that students are challenged in a variety of ways: through grade-level quantitative and qualitative complexity; through texts that offer both representation and new knowledge of the world; and by cultivating curiosity, inquiry, and agency? At Student Achievement Partners, we are creating a growing bank of resources meant to support educators in the work that helps us leverage diverse and complex text for instruction. Join us for our first online course focusing on applying the text analysis toolkit resource in your classroom and learn alongside us about the opportunities and next steps needed for this work.

This course will consist of three bite-sized asynchronous learning modules (totaling roughly 5 hours):

  • Know Yourself; Know Your Students: How identity impacts text selection and instruction
  • Text Analysis: Analyzing text for complexity and cultural relevance
  • Text Examples: Text specific examples of analysis and the implications for instructional planning

Educators will have the opportunity to learn virtually, try out and give input on our evolving resource bank, and examine text-based sample resources by grade level bands. This course will also include an optional webinar (1 hour) as an extension/culmination of the work. Registration will close on June 6 or when the course reaches capacity. See this flyer or the accordion below to review the course sequence, goals, and requirements. 


If you’re accessing this page on a mobile device, the link to register is  available under “files.”

  • Course Details

    Duration: 5 hours self-paced course + 1 hour webinar (optional)
    Course Dates: June 12-July 24, 2022. Course modules will be released June 12, June 26, and July 10.
    Cost: free
    Primary Audience: K-12 literacy teachers, curriculum specialists, coaches/literacy leaders.
    Certificate: Participants who complete all three modules of this course by July 24 will receive a professional learning certificate for 5-hours. Participants will also have the opportunity to receive an additional 1-hour certificate for attending the webinar extension. Please reach out to your school district to ensure they will accept these certificates. 

  • Course Requirements

    To earn a certificate showing 5 hours of professional learning, participants must successfully complete the following for all three modules of the course between June 12 and July 24:  

    • Review all course content, including videos and readings.
    • Complete all embedded interactive activities, including discussion boards.
    • Submit a closing survey, including a link to your culminating task. 
  • Course Pacing
    PLEASE NOTE: Coursework for all three modules must be completed by the course close date on July 24th in order to receive a professional learning certificate. After that time, course content will remain available, but the course will no longer be monitored.

    Module 1 |  Know Yourself; Know Your Students  (Releases June 12)
    Overview: In this module, participants will closely consider how identity shows up in the classroom. They will consider how their own identity, the identities of their students, and the identities of the authors of the texts used for instruction impact text selection and use, and why this matters in the classroom.  When educators are (1) able to deeply interrogate their own identities, perspectives, and assumptions and (2) discover the importance of utilizing students' identities for overall learning, then they will be better positioned to foster the language and literacy skills, intellect, criticality, and joy that all students are entitled to. 


    >> Learn: Build knowledge on how identities impact authorship, text selection, and text use with students.

    >> Application of Knowledge: Identify ways in which the author's identity impacts the texts that they write through looking at sample resources. 

    >> Change: Determine what you know (or don’t know) of your students' varied identities in the classroom and how you know it.

    >> Sustain:  Reflect on your own identity markers, how they intersect with your students, and how they differ.

    Module 2 |  Text Analysis (Releases June 26)
    Overview: In this module, participants will be introduced to the anchor resources for this process, qualitative and quantitative text complexity resources and the pillars of what Gloria Ladson-Billings defines as culturally relevant pedagogy. They will engage in a communal experience with a text (based on grade bands), and capture initial reactions, including reflections about why this work matters and how it can impact practice. Participants will work in asynchronous teams to analyze a qualitative feature of this text (meaning/purpose, structure, language or knowledge demands).


    >> Learn: Identify the components of qualitative and quantitative complexity. Identify the pillars of culturally relevant pedagogy (academic excellences, cultural competence, and critical consciousness) and how they offer opportunities and cautions in text selection and use.

    >> Application of Knowledge: Use two components of the text-analysis toolkit with an anchor text.

    >> Change: Share ways that this process varies from other planning/analysis work you’ve done with text, and why that matters.

    >> Sustain: Identify a key takeaway from the resources that you commit to doing in practice.

    Module 3 | Text Examples (Releases July 10)
    Overview: In this module, participants will identify the ways in which careful analysis of text for complexity and cultural relevance can be used to direct instructional planning. Participants will be given access to a small resource bank of complete analysis and planning guides. They will have the opportunity to annotate the samples, and provide feedback about use and impact.


    >> Learn:Determine concrete moves for instructional planning, based on text analysis.

    >> Application of Knowledge: Review and analyze sample planning guides. Complete course with a menu of culminating activities, including options to sample lesson guides, provide feedback on resources, or suggest modified tools based on teacher feedback.

    >> Change: Reflect on current planning practices and consider how the text analysis toolkit enhances/shifts your current approach.

    >> Sustain: Identify various strategies that can be used to help sustain your newly modified planning approach over time.