George Lucas Educational Foundation

Sheila Valencia

Professor of Language, Literacy, and Culture, University of Washington, Seattle

I am a professor of Language, Literacy, and Culture at the University of Washington, Seattle where I teach classes and conduct research on literacy instruction, assessment, and teacher development. I have served on national, state, and local steering committees to improve instruction and assessment including the Common Core State Standards in English/Language Arts and the National Assessment of Educational Progress. My work has appeared in edited books and journals such as Reading Research Quarterly, The Reading Teacher, Elementary School Journal, Journal of Literacy Research, and Journal of Teacher Education. I have also been elected to the Reading Hall of Fame.

Over the past four years, I have collaborated on the Knowledge in Action project at the University of Washington--a project to develop, implement, and investigate a problem-based learning (PBL) approach to rigorous coursework in US Government and Environmental Science classes for students in poverty-impacted schools. Our goal is not just access to high quality curriculum, but success for all students. This work informed my blog posting and led our team of teachers and researchers to develop strategies for helping students learn challenging content from text.

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    • Literacy

      When High School Students Struggle with Textbook Reading

      Many textbooks aren't even close to authentic reading experiences. Minimize student struggle by identifying purpose, assigning reasonable homework, and teaching them to self-monitor for understanding.