Centers and Journals
Resource: Mrs. Kirby - Ritzman Elementary
Key Words: Instructional Strategies, Language, K-12
By: Linnea Gallagher
In my discussion with Mrs. Kirby, I found that she is very reliant on IEPs. She
presented me with copies of students' IEPs and showed me how to follow them. She
feels IEPs are very important and allow the teacher to locate the problem areas of the
student, and to identify the target goal that needs to be met. A specific section in the IEP
was dedicated to language development. The student was tested over letter identification,
vocabulary, grammar, spelling, and reading comprehension. After the student had been
tested, the target goal is set and worked towards throughout the school year.
Kent State University
One way in which Mrs. Kirby helps students with their language is through her
"centers." She has a certain time throughout the day that the students are dismissed to
their centers. Some centers include math, history, spelling, reading, money, computer,
and language. The language center is set up so that the child has a weekly term in which
he/she must know (i.e., noun = person, place, or thing). Worksheets are provided on that
term and turned in at the end of the week for a grade. Dictionaries are present at the
language center, and sometimes writing assignments are requested.
Another strategy for language intervention is dedicated to journals. Each morning
when the students come into the classroom, a thought followed by a question is written
on the board. The students go directly to their journals and begin writing about the topic
on the board. After the students are finished writing, Mrs. Kirby asks if anyone would
like to share their journal entry with the class. This provides an opportunity for the
students to discuss their own personal thoughts and ideas with the class and allows for
I have only observed this class twice and these two examples of language
intervention are what I observed throughout my visits. Mrs. Kirby has a busy schedule,
and it was not easy for us to get together and talk about language intervention in great
detail. She did meet with me after class one evening and briefly went over the IEPs.
Again, as I stated in the beginning of this paper, she feels very strongly about IEPs and
allows them to assist her in determining language intervention.
Uploaded by: Jessica Soltesz, Kent State University, Deaf Education Major