Common Core Standards in Diverse Classrooms: Essential Practices for Developing Academic Language and Literacy

Presented by:

Dr. Susan O’Hara, University of California Davis 
Dr. Bob Pritchard, Sacramento State University

Date & Time

Wednesday, May 4, 2016 - 8:30 am - 3:30 pm


This workshop will provide you with concrete tools and strategies you can use to implement the research-based, high impact instructional practices of Interacting with Complex Texts, Fostering Academic Interactions, and Fortifying Oral and Written Output. Using video illustrations and an observation protocol, you will explore what these practices look like in classrooms when teachers use them to meet the academic language and literacy needs of English learners in support of the Common Core State Standards. You will also experience a variety of instructional strategies that can be utilized to support ESL teachers’ implementation of these practices, with special emphasis on the use of complex texts to develop academic habits of thinking (e.g., use evidence to support claims, question evidence). These strategies will include specific ways in which new technologies can be implemented across grade levels to advance language development and promote academic achievement. Finally, you will learn how school districts have implemented strategies for building instructional capacity to support coach and teacher enactment of these practices district-wide in support of student learning.


PK-12 ESL, bilingual, classroom teachers, content teachers, specialists, coaches, supervisors and administrators as well as teacher educators from higher education institutions and professional developers involved with preservice and inservice work.


Dr. Susan O’Hara is Executive Director of Resourcing Excellence in Education (REEd) at the University of California Davis and co-founder of the Academic Language Development Network. She has been engaged with a five year project to develop, implement and test a professional learning model to build mentor and teacher capacity across disciplines to promote English learners’ academic-language and literacy development. Building on this work, she has investigated the knowledge and practices of mentors and teachers that are associated with improved learning outcomes of English learners and co-led a team in the development and testing of Essential Practice Frames that articulate high leverage practices to meet the learning needs of this population. She has co-authored more than fifty publications including Common Core Standards in diverse classrooms: Essential practices for developing academic language and disciplinary literacy.

Dr. Robert Pritchard, a Professor Emeritus of Education at Sacramento State University, is a language and literacy specialist who has worked extensively with schools, school districts, and state departments of education on a wide range of professional development projects. A classroom teacher and reading specialist for thirteen years, Dr. Pritchard also worked internationally for nine years as an ESL teacher, teacher trainer, and curriculum specialist. He has authored numerous publications related to English learners, innovative uses of technology, and professional development for teachers including Common Core Standards in diverse classrooms: Essential practices for developing academic language and disciplinary literacy, Kids come in all languages: Reading instruction for ESL students, and Teaching vocabulary with hypermedia.