Teacher Development

UFLI Teacher Development Projects

The University of Florida Literacy Initiative works to improve literacy outcomes for students who struggle to learn to read and write.  A key to this work is the development of expertise among teachers.  Our current teacher development activities include the following:

UFLI Tutor Training

All UF Proteach students participate in a one-week training session in the UFLI Tutoring for Beginning Readers program.  Tutors learn each of the steps in the tutoring model and practice with a peer.

This training is coordinated with the Proteach reading coursework and accompanied by a field experience in local schools.  Participants complete 20-25 tutoring sessions with a struggling beginning reader in first or second grade.  The children who receive tutoring progress, on average, about 10 book levels. This equates to approximately six months’ gain over about eight weeks.

UFLI Small-Group Intervention Training

In addition to their training in the one-on-one UFLI tutoring model, students in Early Childhood and Elementary Education programs are trained in the UFLI Small-Group Intervention.  The Small-Group Intervention model takes the basic strategies included in the one-on-one model and adapts them for implementation with 3-5 students at once.

For most children, carefully designed and implemented small-group intervention can be just as effective as one-on-one tutoring.  Although the gains may be somewhat slower, students benefit from learning from their peers.  Because most teachers do not have sufficient time to provide one-on-one intervention to all their struggling readers, learning a systematic approach to providing effective small-group intervention is important.

Professional Development for Teachers

The UFLI program works closely with school districts in North Florida and surrounding areas. Practicing teachers have participated in different versions of the UFLI tutoring model as part of their own professional development in reading. Teachers who participate in these experiences adapt UFLI strategies to all learners in their classrooms.