InitiaLit–2 is the important final stage of MultiLit’s whole-class literacy program. In our recent survey, Year 2 teachers using InitiaLit–2 revealed their favourite aspects of the program. Here’s what they had to say.
1. Seeing the impact across the board for students
We heard that seeing the impact of InitiaLit–2 on students is both fulfilling and confidence-boosting amongst teachers. The way children respond to the program and activities, and assessment results, give teachers regular, valuable feedback. One described their “enjoyment of watching the children thrive, read and comprehend”.
Success has been consistent theme for students of all abilities. “Our data is showing significant growth from all students,” said one teacher. “Some who were ‘struggling’ with reading and spelling concepts in previous years are improving at a rapid pace and our higher achieving students are also progressing and improving.”
Students that entered the program at the expected level “flourished”, while one teacher shared that “students with trauma backgrounds and learning disabilities really love the structure”.
InitiaLit’s ongoing embedded assessments help to track each student’s growth. Teachers appreciated that they could easily monitor progress throughout the year and quickly identify what students were struggling with. “The assessments are vital; they clearly show what students can and cannot do yet.” Gaining this clarity at regular intervals through the program helps teachers hone-in on areas for revision and reinforcement. Sixty-six per cent of teachers surveyed agreed they saw a reduction in the number of students at the tail end of the class, and in the number of students needing intervention. One teacher observed that the regular testing also offers students the valuable chance to “see their own growth”.
Through this robust school-wide approach to early literacy, teachers feel reassured that they are setting children on a path to success in primary school and beyond. Several teachers linked strong Year 3 NAPLAN results with their InitiaLit program: “This year, our Year 3s have shown fabulous NAPLAN results. They have been involved with InitiaLit since Prep.”
2. A comprehensive and integrated program that children thrive on
With components covering fluency and comprehension, spelling, grammar and storybook reading, InitiaLit–2 offers educators a structured, sequential, integrated and evidence-based approach.
Eighty-nine per cent of teachers surveyed agreed that the InitiaLit–2 literacy block addresses most syllabus outcomes. Eighty-six per cent agreed that the program provides an important next step in early literacy education for students, as a holistic, systematic, and supported consolidation of their skills. “I like how the different components of the program link together, including themes, text types and grammar,” one teacher explained.
Teachers observed that students respond particularly well to the structure and consistency of InitiaLit–2. “Having a routine that is not disjointed in the literacy block means students know what they are doing,” we heard. Another teacher affirmed that students “thrive with the clear expectations and direction that the program provides”.
For those early in their career, the program has established a strong foundation for literacy instruction. An early career teacher shared, “I find that the evidence-based practice of InitiaLit is educating me in how to best teach children to read.” Scripted lessons were identified as particularly valuable for those at the beginning of their career, or who felt less confident. One teacher appreciated that the program provided “simple ways to teach spelling and comprehension for some concepts I would have found difficult to teach by myself”.
3. High-quality resources and activities that everyone enjoys – and that save planning time
Nine out of ten teachers surveyed found the quality, quantity, and range of program materials to be high. Teachers shared their delight in helping students understand concepts with “wonderful on-topic and in-depth discussions” and praised the program’s “thorough and enjoyable teaching with wonderful resources.”. One teacher highlighted that, “children remember spelling rules using songs and poems” from the program. “The storybook activities are excellent,” said another.
Through a kit of comprehensive resources, InitiaLit–2 helps teachers prepare their lessons effectively and efficiently. Ninety-four per cent agreed that the program reduces planning time. We heard that teachers felt “on-track and organised” with “ready resources” that meant “less time spent on finding activities”.
While we hope in 2022 remote learning will be largely behind us, teachers commented that the PowerPoint lessons and other materials helped them pivot quickly to online delivery: “It was good to be able to use something during lockdown without having to reinvent the wheel, or produce our own slides,” explained one teacher.