Ms. Cortez is a 1st Grade teacher at Carson Elementary on Chicago’s South Side. With the Reading In Motion program and her dedication as a teacher, Ms. Cortez closed the reading gap for more than 80% of her students before the end of the 2018-2019 school year. She shares the story of one student in particular who began the school year not at all engaged with books or reading. “As I sat with him twice a week, he began to realize how reading can be fun through fluency races and blending words. Today he appreciates reading more than ever,” she shares. “He especially loves the theatre scripts. Each Friday, one group memorizes their scripts and then they perform like real actors. Doing this gets them to read the text multiple times without realizing they are practicing their literacy skills. It inspires me everyday when he and others time themselves and show me how many more words they have read than the day before.”
Thank you, Ms. Cortez, for cultivating an enthusiasm for reading in your students!