The teacher I interviewed was Samer Rinehart. She is currently a second grade teacher. She went to John Carroll University and earned her bachelors degree in Early Childhood Education, and she also has a reading endorsement with her degree. Mrs. Rinehart has three years of teaching experience. She taught Kindergarten for two years, and this is her first year teaching second grade. The location of the school where she teaches at is Hillcrest Elementary School. It’s in Richfield Ohio and it’s in the Revere Local School District. The building is quite large and has different wings for each grade level. The socio-economic makeup is more suburban than anything else, and the student ethnicity is very diverse, according to the classroom I was in at least. I saw many provisions for literacy learning. There was an area where there were plenty of books for students to choose from (library corner). There was the alphabet posted across the upper wall with tracing lines to show how to write each letter. There was also a nametag taped on each student desk with their own handwriting on it. Each nametag had a number line and the alphabet across it as well. I chose Mrs. Rinehart because I mentioned to one of my roommates about this interview paper and told me her sister was a teacher. She gave me her contact information and I asked for her permission to observe her classroom and interview her.
The underlying theories that Mrs. Rinehart bases reading instruction is mostly cognitive/information processing. This is because she uses reading and writing together in her lesson plans. In one of the interview questions below, I answer the question of how you connect reading and writing in the classroom. (This is just one way of how she connects them together). Over the years as a teacher of reading Mrs. Rinehart said that after every year of teaching she has learned more and more about better ways of teaching it. She uses the balanced approach to literacy instruction, because it is very important for the students, especially at such a young age. Since she’s been teaching Kindergarten longer than second grade, it has been more of a challenge for her since she’s new in the second grade classroom. The teacher connects reading and writing to other subjects as well. In math, Mrs. Rinehart has the students complete worksheets (mathboxes). The worksheets have written directions, and let them figure out what the question is asking first by reading, then completing the problem.