RISE Up is a middle school reading, writing, science and math program specifically designed for English language learners. The course is designed to prepare students for the reading, writing, and academic discipline required of them in high school.
In Reading, students are asked to read different genres or types of reading passages that middle and high school students need to be able to read comprehensively for success across all subjects in middle school and high school. Students are taught to read descriptive nonfiction, expository nonfiction, narration, scientific exposition, different kinds of fiction, and so on.
Each module has the same structure. Students begin with Pre-reading instruction and practice activities that teach the genre, skills, strategies, and vocabulary needed for students to read comprehensively in this genre.
Then students spend time on the Reading passage, reading the passage and assessing their comprehension through quizzes.
Finally, students do a number of Post-reading activities that allow them to discuss the ideas of the passage, do some projects that show their understanding, and conduct some independent reading to assess their reading comprehension progress.
In Writing, students write paragraphs and essay in different genres or types of writing that they will be expected to write across all subjects in middle school and high school. Students are taught to write descriptive pieces, narratives, reports, persuasive pieces, a research paper, and so on.
Students begin with instruction and practice activities that teach the genre, form, and traits needed for students to write well in a particular genre.
Then they are shown models of strong and weak writing, with comprehension prompts.
Then they are given instruction in grammar and usage. The grammar instruction and practice relates to the practical application of grammar – understanding how to fix grammatical errors in their own writing.
Finally, and most importantly, students go through a Writing Workshop. This is a set of instruction videos and hands-on practice activities that assist students in writing their own paragraph or essay. In the module shown below, students are expected to write a descriptive paragraph, so the Writing Workshop takes them through the steps of:
- Choosing a topic
- Gathering details or organizing
- Writing the First draft
- Editing their draft
A student leads the instruction here. This student is doing the assignment herself, so she is helping the students as a peer, not a teacher. She discusses the problems she is having and in this way assists the students.
Science and Math
In Science and Math, students learn the specialized language of these subjects so that they are comfortable learning these subjects through English in high school and university.
In addition, by learning these subjects through English, students learn to use English as a means of communication within an academic setting. By planning projects, collaborating, and reaching conclusions with others, students do not simply learn English; they learn in English.