The purpose of the English language arts goes beyond the basics of reading and writing. Especially in the middle school ages, when learners are discovering themselves and the adults they will become, the ability to read and write texts to aid them in this discovery of the self and the larger world is essential. In an increasingly diverse and digital world, it is necessary to prepare and arm students with multiple literacies and critical thinking skills. In order to make this learning accessible to all students, the effective middle school teacher must differentiate instruction based on students strengths and needs and involve students in making decisions in their own learning. To prepare learners for life outside of the classroom, teachers must provide students with experiences of collaborative discussion and engage them in multiple diverse texts and genres. The purpose of this action research project was to evaluate the work of a pre-service teacher in these areas and analyze progress toward these goals. Throughout the clinical experience, data was collected from lesson plans, materials, recordings of teaching, journal entries, EdTPA commentary, and observations from a field supervisor. The study centers on differentiated instruction, high leverage practices such as scaffolding and discussion, and language arts teaching goals of culturally sustaining teaching.

Exit Requirement

Action Research

Date of Award


Degree Name

Master of Arts in Teaching (initial licensure)

Committee Chair

Kenneth Carano

Committee Member

Anne Ittner



Type (DCMI Terms)

Text; Image; StillImage

Subject Categories

Education | Language and Literacy Education | Secondary Education

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