Teacher preparation and knowledge are fundamental to student reading achievement. In this session, we will discuss why a systematic phonetic approach to reading instruction is classical, brain-based and effective. We will address the importance of phonemic awareness, language and vocabulary development and best practices for reading instruction. Practical strategies for providing support in the grammar school classroom will be shared. Participants will be able to apply their knowledge of reading development into effective instructional practices as well as assessment tools.
Jessica Gombert is in her 16th year as the grammar school headmaster at the Geneva School of Boerne. She holds a MA in Education and has been involved in many aspects of education for 30 years. Teaching experiences include special education, kindergarten, adult classes for Region 20 Alternative Certification program and student teacher supervision at University of Texas at San Antonio. She has a passion for teaching students to become lifelong learners, mentoring teachers and for classical and Christian education. She is currently writing children’s readers to supplement the phonics curriculum.
Melissa Siller has spent the last 20 years in various areas of education, including assessment item writing, classroom teaching, teaching pre-service teachers in field based teacher education, and is currently in her 8th year as the reading specialist at the Geneva School of Boerne. In addition, she is an adjunct faculty member in Trinity University’s Department of Education. Her research focuses on teacher education, brain-based teaching practices, curriculum and inquiry as well as beginning in-service teacher induction support. She earned her PhD in Curriculum and Instruction from the University of Texas at San Antonio.