Info for Parents


The Learning Center

Norfolk Public Schools

Freeman-Kennedy School 


         The purpose of the Learning Center  (Language Based Resource Room) in Norfolk, MA is to provide a more intense, specialized, systematic instruction within a highly organized structured resource room environment with minimal distractions. The students in this program have significant difficulties with the comprehension of language. The methodology of instruction varies from the traditional resource room, in the level of scaffolding provided when directions and instructions are given. Instruction and directions are broken down into very specific steps and the students are provided with models and visuals. As the students are involved in the program, they will come to understand how they learn and why certain strategies can help them. As a result, the students will become more independent learners as they internalize these strategies.

    My classroom is a positive place that encourages learning, high self esteem, positive self-concept, teamwork, kindness and reaching ones potential. The curriculum is designed to meet the needs of each individual child and their unique learning style, level, and needs. A strong rapport is developed with each child to ensure a comfortable learning environment is provided.

Teaching Methodologies

-       Multi sensory instruction (auditory, visual, tactile)

-       Intensive, rule-based, highly structured, systematic, explicitly taught instruction

-       Scaffolding – break down information into small parts and teach the parts one step at a time

-       Teach strategies that enable the student to internalize and use independently without the need for adult prompting

-       Teacher modeling with concrete examples

-       Small group instruction where students are active participants in the learning process

-       Group children of similar intellectual abilities, with similar learning rates

-       Daily review of previous lessons until skills are internalized

-       Provide many opportunities for success on a daily basis

-       Consistent positive reinforcement

-   Opportunities to work independently on new skills learned

Grading System

In an effort to measure students’ long-term, meaningful understanding of material, grades will be determined using the following system:


25% - participation

25% - effort

25% - independent work (math computation, morning work, supplemental and follow-up assignments)

25% - assessments/observations/progress monitoring/conferencing


This grading system applies to math, reading comprehension, phonics/fluency, writing, spelling, and vocabulary.  The same grading system can be used for social studies and science as needed.

Not all students learn the same. Nor should their growth be measured by exams alone.  


Marach 22, 2017

DRA Interpretation

 DRA (Developmental Reading Assessment) 

Below is a chart to help you understand what that number means.   

It is important to note progress from the last update rather than just the current  DRA level.


Grade                   DRA Score

Kindergarten            1-3 

Grade 1                     3-16 

Grade 2                   18-30 

Grade 3                   30-38 

Grade 4                   40-44 

Grade 5                   44 +  

Guided Reading Level 

This level is used to assign books to your child to read independently.  This letter level corresponds directly to the DRA scores.


Grade                  Book Level          DRA Level 

Kindergarten             A-C                       1-3 

Grade 1                      D-J                       3-16 

Grade 2                      K-P                      18-30 

Grade 3                      Q-T                      30-38 

Grade 4                      U-W                     40-44 

Grade 5                      X-Z                      44+


(Reading A-Z Recommendations)


Books for Parents to Read


What To Do....When Kids are Mean to Your Child - Written by Elin McCoy

Quirky Kids: Understanding and Helping Your Child Who Doesn't Fit In -When to Worry and When Not to Worry -  Written By Perri Klass, MD and Eileen Costello, MD

When Your Child Struggles - The Myths of 20/20 Vision:  What Every Parent Needs to Know   - Written By David L. Cook, OD

Overcoming Dyslexia  - Written By Sally Shaywitz, MD

The following 3 books were written by Edward M. Hallowell, MD and John J. Ratey, MD

1)  Driven to Distraction: Recognizing and Coping with ADD from Childhood to Adulthood

2)  Delivered from Distraction: Getting the Most out of Life with Attention Deficit Disorder

3)  Answers to Distraction