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Nurturing a Love of Reading: Wit and Wisdom

Students are discovering a newfound enthusiasm for reading through Wit and Wisdom, an innovative and comprehensive literacy initiative designed to cultivate a love for reading and foster critical thinking skills among students. This is the fourth year the school district has implemented Wit and Wisdom in the classroom, starting with elementary grades and incrementally introducing it through middle school.

“This program represents a significant leap forward in our commitment to providing a well-rounded, enriching education that prepares students for a lifetime of learning,” said Katrina McEllen, Assistant Superintendent of Educational Program Services.

With input from literacy professionals and educators, the meticulously crafted program uses diverse texts, including literature, historical documents, and scientific articles, to engage students in meaningful, thought-provoking learning experiences. Additionally, key components of the program include a rigorous curriculum, collaborative learning, integration of core subjects, differentiated instruction, integration of core subjects, and professional development.

Teachers across the district participated in Wit & Wisdom's Module and Lesson Study professional development during the optional planning day on Friday, Oct 20. Redeana Smith, K-12 Curriculum Coordinator, emphasized that this session took participants deep into the curriculum’s structure. “We are offering practical planning tools and strategies while focusing on program goals,” Smith said.

The session's goals reinforced knowledge of Wit & Wisdom’s design and key elements, ways to apply an approach to module and lesson preparation for successful implementation, and understanding productive struggle and its benefits, essentially developing skills to support students in a productive struggle.

Through Wit and Wisdom, teachers learn to effectively incorporate content-rich texts that challenge students to explore complex ideas and develop analytical skills, while integrating literacy with other core subjects, such as math and science. This allows students to apply their reading and comprehension skills across various disciplines.

The initiative is also designed to encourage students to participate in dynamic discussions and collaborative activities that promote critical thinking and effective communication skills. Recognizing that not all students learn at the same pace, Wit and Wisdom provides resources and strategies to support students of all learning styles and abilities, ensuring that each child receives the tailored instruction they need to succeed.

Teachers will continue to receive well-prepared training and support throughout the school year to ensure their success in the classroom.