Pre-Conference – Thursday, May 2, 2024

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2:30PM - 4:30PM

TBD

ALTA Board Meeting

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4:00PM - 6:00PM

LOBBY

Registration Desk Opens

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5:00PM - 6:30PM

Pinnacle

Chapter Presidents Reception

Conference Day 1 – Friday, May 3, 2024

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7:00AM - 8:00AM

GALLERY

Registration Opens (breakfast served 7:00 – 8:00 am)

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8:00AM - 8:15AM

GOV II

President’s Welcoming Statements

Linda Gladden, LDT, CALT
President, Academic Language Therapy Association

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8:15AM - 9:45AM

GOV II

Educators as Physicians: Using Data from Reading Assessments for Professional Decision-Making

Jan Hasbrouck, Ph.D.

ABSTRACT:

Response to Intervention (RTI) and MTSS processes require professional educators to make numerous decisions about their students’ academic needs. Data must be collected and carefully analyzed to help guide essential decisions. Participants will learn research-based strategies for helping teams of educators collect and use assessment data efficiently and effectively.

Participants in the full workshop will:

  1. Understand the purpose of collecting data effectively and efficiently within an RTI/MTSS framework.
  2. Understand the purpose and basic strategies involved in benchmark/ screening, diagnostic, and progress monitoring reading assessments.
  3. Know how to accurately collect, interpret, and use data using oral reading fluency assessments and informal reading inventories.
  4. Know how to create progress monitoring graphs using curriculum-based measurement (CBM) procedures.
  5. Interpret data and use it to make decisions about students’ instructional needs and to evaluate students’ progress.

1.5 CEs

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9:45AM - 10:15AM

GOV I

Break with Exhibitors

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10:15AM - 11:45AM

GOV II

Vocabulary and Knowledge Acquisition: Effective research-based strategies for students with reading difficulties

Amy Elleman, Ph.D.

ABSTRACT:

Students with reading difficulties often struggle to acquire new vocabulary and knowledge from texts. In this interactive presentation, educators will learn concrete and practical tools to help students overcome challenges and actively build their vocabulary and knowledge across academic subjects. Practitioners will learn multiple research-based strategies for increasing vocabulary including how to select and teach words explicitly, how to teach independent word learning strategies such as morphemic analysis, and how to leverage semantic networks for more efficient and meaningful instruction. Practitioners will also learn strategies for activating prior knowledge, building knowledge from informational text, and promoting transfer of knowledge from one text to another. Please join us for this opportunity to add multiple research-based strategies for improving comprehension and content expertise to your educator toolkit.

1.5 CEs

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11:45AM - 12:00PM

GOV I

Break with Exhibitors

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12:00PM - 1:00PM

GOV I

Business Lunch Meeting with ALTA Awards

1.0 CE

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1:00PM - 1:15PM

GOV I

Break

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1:15PM - 2:45PM

GOV II

Is She on Grade Level: Taking another look at how we talk about reading levels

Jan Hasbrouck, Ph.D.

ABSTRACT:

Parents, caregivers, and educators all want to know about students’ reading levels. Parents typically want reassurance that their child is making adequate progress or, if not, what appropriate, purposeful interventions are being provided. Educators frequently use this kind of information to discuss students’ placement in instructional programs and to determine their progress over time. Historically, the term “grade level” has been the most well-understood terminology for these discussions. “Your child is on grade level in reading.” “This student is reading 2 grades above her level”, etc. Since the mid-1990s students’ reading level is often discussed in terms used by the widely implemented “guided reading” programs where levels are reported as A-Z+ with bands of these “gradient text levels” are assigned to grade level equivalents (e.g., Levels E-J are for grade 3). This session reviews the problems of using “grade level” or “gradient level” to communicate a student’s level of progress or proficiency in reading. Using terminology aligned with the concept of reading development over time (Chall’s reading “stages”, Ehri’s “phases” and Kilpatrick’s “levels”) will be suggested as a more valuable and justifiable way to have these important conversations, at least at the early stages of reading development.

Participants in the full workshop will:

  1. Review how teachers understand and discuss reading levels.
  2. Review how school psychologists, special educators, and others understand and discuss reading levels.
  3. Understand the knowledge and information that would be required to change how students’ reading levels are discussed in educational settings (assessment, instruction, curriculum).
  4. Understand how reading development has been conceptualized in various models.
  5. Learn a new way of presenting this information to parents, colleagues, and students themselves.

1.5 CEs

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2:45PM - 3:15PM

GOV I

Break with Exhibitors

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3:15PM - 4:45PM

GOV II

Inside the Transition: A CALT’s View on Adopting the Science of Reading

John Hodges

ABSTRACT:

In today’s educational landscape, the need for effective literacy programs is more urgent than ever. How can schools successfully transition to evidence-based approaches like the Science of Reading Methodology? This presentation offers a first-hand account of the challenges, triumphs, and transformative power of adopting the Science of Reading in schools and how ALTA professionals can be a part of the change!

1.5 CEs

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5:00PM - 6:30PM

TBA

ALTA Presidents Reception

Conference Day 2 – Saturday, May 4, 2023

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8:00AM - 9:00AM

GALLERY

Registration Opens (breakfast served 8:00 – 9:00 am)

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9:00AM - 9:15AM

GOV II

Day 2 Opening Remarks

Michelle Qazi, M.Ed., CALT-QI
President, Academic Language Therapy Association

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9:15AM - 10:45AM

GOV II

The Heavy Hitters of Intermediate Literacy: Multisyllabic Decoding and Morphology

Laura Stewart

ABSTRACT:

As students move into the upper elementary grades, there is a notable difference in the type of words they are being asked to read and understand. Not only do students need to be adept at decoding multisyllabic words, they must also have strategies for unlocking the meanings of unfamiliar words. To equip our students with the rigorous demands of complex text in these grades, we need to bring out the “heavy hitters” of Intermediate Word Work: Multi-syllabic Decoding Routines and Morphology. This session will showcase efficient instruction to get the job done: replicable, reliable routines to teach our students to fearlessly attack big words while building morphological understandings to accelerate vocabulary growth.

These are critical years to continue laying the strong foundation for lifelong literacy. The foundational skills don’t end in third grade; we expand the foundation with more sophisticated tools to move our students into the sophisticated text demands they will meet in school and beyond.

1.5 CEs

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10:45AM - 11:15AM

GOV I

Break with Exhibitors

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11:15AM - 12:15PM

GOV II

Lunch

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12:15PM - 1:45PM

GOV II

Grounding Dyslexia Assessments in the Science of Reading

Sheila Clonan, Ph.D.

ABSTRACT:

This session will address the essential components of assessment for word-level reading difficulties as grounded in the science of reading. We will briefly review the simple view of reading, with an emphasis on how it can be used to inform assessment processes. We will examine key areas to be assessed, interpretation of findings, and how these findings can serve as a foundation for designing effective interventions.

1.5 CEs

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1:45PM - 2:00PM

GOV I

Coffee Break with Exhibitors

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2:00PM - 3:30PM

GOV II

Phonemic Awareness: What’s the Point?

Karen Kehoe, Ph.D., and Melinda Hirschmann, Ed.D.

ABSTRACT:

Theories, research evidence, and expert advice are evolving around phonemic awareness (PA). It may seem that you are wading through conflicting messages about what to teach and what aspects of PA students need to master. In this session, we will describe theoretical frameworks for understanding PA development then discuss areas of overlap and divergence. We will review the empirical evidence and offer guidance on its implications for instruction. Phonemic awareness is a vital subskill for reading and writing. This session emphasizes the need to intentionally integrate PA within your instruction to meet diverse learners’ needs.

We will address these essential questions:

  • What’s the point of PA instruction?
  • What does empirical research support?
  • How should PA be assessed and monitored?
  • When and how should phonemic awareness be taught?
  • How much direct PA instruction is needed?
  • What should be done differently for students with dyslexia?

1.5 CEs

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3:30PM - 4:00PM

GOV II

Closing Remarks

Michelle Qazi, M.Ed., CALT-QI
President, Academic Language Therapy Association

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