English/Language Arts teachers at Gaskill Prep School use a workshop-based approach for the teaching of reading writing, speaking and listening that we have developed and named Niagara's Choice. The philosophy is based on research-based teaching practices, differentiated instruction, the planning of instruction based on data, and the belief that all students can reach proficiency. Niagara's choice is closely aligned with the New York State Learning Standards that are measured each year in January by the New York State English/Language Arts Assessment.
Through the use of immersion-style studies of both authors and writing genres, students are asked to employ a variety of critical thinking skills on a daily basis. We require that all students read independently every day, and make sure that our students have access to books that support that requirement.
Student progress in reading is measured twice each year by the Gates-MacGinitie Reading Assessment. This test is administered each fall and spring and used to identify students who are in need of extra assistance.