2015 Sessions

Session information for the 2015 CIRR Conference.
More sessions, presentations and speaker bios coming soon!

Channeling Your Inner Detective: Looking for Clues to Move Learning Forward

An Observation Survey of Early Literacy Achievement provides classroom teachers with an opportunity to be careful observers of ‘how young children learn to read and write’ (Clay, 2005). During our session we will investigate how ‘the information produced by systematic observation reduces our uncertainties and improves our instruction’ (Clay, 2001). We will look for clues to move all students’ learning forward as we build on the strengths revealed throughout the tasks.

Presenter: Dee Dee Verlinde

York Region District School Board

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Wonderings + Comprehension Strategies = Inquiry at its Best!

Join Early Years educators as they explore the process of inquiry based learning in Kindergarten. Comprehension strategies, such as, asking effective questions and making connections will highlight how to make the link between honouring student wonderings while focusing on enhancing literacy strategies.

Presenters: Melissa Seco & Jan Samulewitsch


Strengthening Reading through Literacy Coaching: The Rolling River School Division Model

To improve reading outcomes for children, the Rolling River School Division embarked on a division-wide professional development initiative focused on K-6 classroom instruction in literacy. To facilitate this project, the district hired Joe Stouffer as their literacy coach who designed teacher learning sessions and in-class support drawing on some aspects of Reading Recovery professional development. Now in its fourth year, the district has seen tremendous growth in overall reading achievement. In this session, Marg and Joe share Rolling River’s design for instructional improvement and share the district’s outcomes.

Presenters: Joe Stouffer &  Marg Janssen

Rolling River School Division

The Classroom Impact of Reading Recovery: Examining Resituated Reading Recovery-Based Teacher Learning

Responding to calls for more effective teacher preparation for teaching early literacy, this descriptive doctoral study examines if and how teacher learning from Reading Recovery training can be applied within Kindergarten, Grade One, and Grade Two whole-class contexts. The survey and case study findings show Canadian participants resituated procedures, language, knowledge, and beliefs from the one-to-one teaching in Reading Recovery to many classroom reading and writing activities. Additionally, participants described how Reading Recovery training increased their confidence and effectiveness in literacy instruction, a finding that has implications to in- and pre-service teacher professional development and the cost-effectiveness of the intervention.

Presenter: Joe Stouffer

University of British Columbia

The Greatest Adventure is What Lies Ahead… going beyond the dark side of low levels

What have we learned about the dark side of pattern text and low writing vocabularies?  This session will explore why time is the essence for moving students out of pattern texts and into story books.  The features of simple story books and the behaviours that students need to control in order to build a literacy processing system will be discussed. The same urgency exists for writing a greater number of words and how this supports problem solving in reading and writing.

Presenters: Barb Cassar & Paul Cousineau

Reading Recovery Teacher Leaders, TDSB


A case study of one EAL student ‘Cris’ in his first 10 Reading Recovery lessons and the considerations that led to accelerated progress to Level 3 texts and beyond right from the start. These considerations are also applicable to first literacy lessons in a grade one classroom.

Presenter: Holly Cumming

Reading Recovery Teacher Leader, Winnipeg School Division

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Writing messages: Tapping into children’s worlds

JaniceWhat sorts of interactions between teacher and child help a disengaged child learn how to compose and write messages along a gradient of difficulty?  In this session we draw from case study examples to explore how teachers can support the composing process by tapping into children’s worlds.

Presenter: Janice Van Dyke, Reading Recovery Trainer (Central)

Canadian Institute of Reading Recovery

Time’s Up: The Race Against the 30 Minute Timer

Is your timer ringing before your lesson has ended? Are you challenged to ‘fit everything in’ each day? Clay advises us that, ‘With a measured dose of opportunities [the teacher] steadily lifts the level of challenge.’ In this interactive session, we’ll examine what these measured doses of opportunity may look like and how our teaching decisions contribute to fast and fluent responding in a 30 minute lesson.

Presenter: Dee Dee Verlinde

York Region District School Board

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Where the Visible Meets the Invisible

A Matczuk02 (2) copy

As children begin to construct complex prob­lem solving systems in reading and writing, the information that they see and hear must be integrated with what they know in ever changing ways. In this session we will ex­plore the ways that the visible information is integrated with the invisible information.

Presenter: Allyson Matczuk, Reading Recovery Trainer (Western Division)

Canadian Institute of Reading Recovery