English Language Arts


At Evergreen Charter School our mission is to nurture the intellectual, physical and social development of all of our students. Our overarching literacy belief is that every student can become a competent reader and writer. To that end we have developed a program of balanced literacy instruction that allows students to have meaningful and rigorous literacy experiences. This approach helps students increase their proficiency in the five interrelated processes of reading, writing, speaking, listening and thinking, while integrating these processes within all teaching and learning experiences.

Our balanced literacy framework is a flexible organizational and planning model used to engage students in literacy experiences that motivate them to be life-long readers. This framework uses current research on evidence-based best practices in literacy. Classroom teachers use an approach that allows scaffolding and differentiation of instruction based on the students’ instructional levels. Through skillful questioning techniques, our students are taught to think critically at high and complex levels. Our program of study is aligned to the NYS Common Core Learning Standards and based on NY State curricula guidelines.

Students are immersed in literacy through a daily three period ELA block. Students are exposed to a wide range of genres and materials that include fiction, non-fiction, narrative, poetry, chapter books, text-books, newspapers, encyclopedias, journals as well as electronic sources. Technology is integrated throughout the literacy program as a support and means of enrichment through the use of smart boards, a MAC computer lab and a portable computer lab. The focus of our program of study is to teach students to become thoughtful and strategic readers. In order to teach these strategies, we use high-quality children’s literature that aligns with the Common Core Standards and that allows students opportunities to apply strategies in contexts that will make them life-long learners. Complex texts are used as anchor and mentor texts for both reading and writing instruction.

Curriculum Materials

  • Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Journeys Program: Journeys is a research-based, comprehensive English Language Arts program designed to provide solid instruction in skill mastery through authentic text that is clear, focused, and needed for college and career readiness.
  • Engage New York Modules:  Modules are infused in content areas where applicable to provide students with additional authentic reading materials with the focus to build on students’ literacy skills as they develop knowledge about the world.
  • Fundations: Fundations is a multi-sensory, systematic and sequential word study program that helps develop a foundation of early literacy skills for our youngest learners.  The program involves daily 30-minute lessons, which focus on carefully sequenced skills that include print knowledge, alphabet awareness, phonological awareness, phonemic awareness, decoding, spelling, and vocabulary development.
  • Words Their Way: The Word Study In Action Developmental Model uses the research-based developmental approach to word study that is student-centered and assessment driven, focusing on the progression of word knowledge (the development of phonics, spelling, word recognition, and vocabulary).
  • Authentic literature: Authentic literature is utilized within guided reading and novel study groups, literature circles, read-alouds and independent reading.
  • WriteSteps Writing and Grammar Program (which infuses Madeline Hunter and 6+1 Traits): The basic framework for writing includes mini-lessons, anchor and mentor texts, shared, guided, interactive and independent writing, small group and individual conferences, and publishing. Interactive whiteboard lessons and visual aids are utilized to enhance student engagement. The program empowers students and teachers to communicate about qualities of writing: ideas, organization, voice, word choice, sentence fluency and conventions.
  • i-Ready Diagnostic and Instruction: i-Ready is an online, interactive learning environment designed to assess students (comprehension, phonological awareness, phonics, high frequency words and vocabulary) and then provide individualized instruction based on each student’s unique needs in accordance with Common Core Standards.