Literacy and Learning Centers

About the Program

Funded in part by a grant from the William Penn Foundation, the School District of Philadelphia is redesigning pre-kindergarten through third-grade classrooms into interactive, center-based learning environments with renovations to include literacy and learning centers. These centers have workstations for art, dramatic play, block building, writing, math activities, and sand/water/tactile learning. The centers also include comfortable reading corners, listening areas to engage with audio materials, and kidney-shaped tables that allow the teacher easy access to students when conducting small-group instruction.

Teachers receive training on the new equipment, technology, and associated best practices, and they have access to sample units and lesson plans for using centers in their classrooms. Eight schools were renovated in the summer of 2017, 11 in the summer of 2018, and ten in the summer of 2019.

About the Evaluation

The Office of Research and Evaluation (ORE) will focus on assessing changes in classroom experiences for students in schools receiving renovations. ORE will also evaluate professional development by surveying teachers after each session. To gauge teachers’ perceptions of program impact and changes in instructional practices, ORE will survey teachers at the end of each school year. ORE will also examine student academic achievement using K-3 student AIMSWeb scores, attendance, and available classroom administrative data.

For More Information

Contact Kelly Linker, Research Specialist:

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