The Elizabeth G. Sturtevant, PhD, Center for Literacy (SCL)

The Elizabeth G. Sturtevant, PhD Center for Literacy has dual missions of Teacher Outreach and Student Outreach.

Teacher Outreach

The Center seeks to support literacy professional learning for classroom teachers and coaches, specialists, and school-based teacher leaders. Faculty affiliates can provide coaching and professional learning for school divisions and individual schools that corresponds with their research foci.

Boosting local professional learning for literacy teacher leaders such as coaches and specialists, the Center is a sponsor for the annual Mason Coaching Institute for Math and Literacy. Dr. Sturtevant urged Literacy faculty to provide ongoing professional support for regional literacy educators and program graduates. Those efforts have evolved into a partnership with Mathematics Education Leadership faculty to provide a daylong institute for teacher leaders, instructional coaches, literacy specialists, and mathematics coaches to learn together and network to strengthen their professional community of practice.

Student Outreach

Each summer, the Literacy program works with local K-12 school partners to provide one-on-one, intensive instruction for students who may have difficulties with reading and writing. Teachers who are part of our graduate programs and are preparing to be Reading Specialists are paired with students from our partner schools. They conduct focused assessment with the students and then use what they learn from the data they gather to design individualized instruction to support students’ literacy development. They work with students for at least 20 hours and are supervised by university faculty. In 2022 we worked with middle school students in Loudoun County Public Schools, in conjunction with a literacy specialist teacher cohort in LCPS. We have worked with students from Graham Road Elementary School (part of Fairfax County Public Schools) and students from Mary Ellen Henderson Middle School (Falls Church City Public Schools). We have partnered with Loudoun County Public Schools, Prince William County Public Schools, Alexandria City Public Schools, and Manassas City Public Schools.

Resources for Parents and Teachers

Our outreach strand provides professional support for classroom teachers and school-based leaders while also addressing student literacy development. Our current Literacy Research Action Project (LEAP) offers free, on-demand web-based resources (Spanish/English) including quick video tips and a variety of interactive read aloud quick guides.

This podcast episode is intended for families seeking ideas to help their students during virtual learning and beyond. As we are moving into the winter with fewer outdoor play opportunities, having additional ideas for play that also serve to build literacy and other academic skills is important. In this brief interview with Mason alumna Alicia Burd, we discuss the role of game play to support key aspects of executive function. Go ahead and play games: they are academically useful, and fun for the whole family! View the episode.

In 2022 we worked with middle school students in Loudoun County Public Schools, in conjunction with an LCPS-sponsored literacy specialist teacher cohort. We also worked with Belong!, a community-focused nonprofit organization in Vienna, VA, to support students with summer literacy tutoring. In the past, we have partnered with Fairfax County Public Schools, Falls Church City Public Schools, Manassas City Public Schools, Prince William County Public Schools, and Alexandria City Public Schools.

View the 2022 LCPS Summer Tutoring Cohort photos.

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