William Watson Elementary 23-24


William Watson is a great community of unique and caring learners. 


Literacy is a fundamental life skill.  It is the ability to read, write, speak and think in a way that lets us communicate effectively and make sense of the world.  Communication – a core competency embedded across all areas of learning in BC’s curriculum – is central to supporting our learners develop their literacy skills as they collaborate, problem solve, share ideas, exchange information, and express their individuality.  Evidence of our learners many gifts, attributes, and competencies are highlighted below.

Our learners understand that learning also requires exploration of one’s identity.  They can communicate pride in who they are and what they can do through images and written language and through reading authentic indigenous stories, our learners explore First Peoples’ knowledge.  Books present opportunities for readers to tackle complex ideas and realities, experience affirmation of facets of their identity, and identity, and develop a compassionate understanding of issues of significance in the world around them.

Our learners can make sense of what they read by inferring, questioning, and using strategies to deepen their understanding and communicate their thinking.  They make their thinking visible by using many different strategies.

Our learners understand that learning takes patience and time.  They can set goals, monitor their progress, and express next steps to further their learning.

Students regularly monitor their progress and communicate it in forms that are effective and appropriate for their audience and purpose.

Overall, our learners are demonstrating proficiency in their reading and writing.  Classroom assessments demonstrate that many of our learners understand what they read, support their thinking, make connections, organize their thoughts, and express their ideas using clear and simple language.

Summative assessments verify that our learners are making gains in reading with comprehension and writing. The evidence of our students’ learning clearly demonstrates they are strengthening their ability to read with comprehension and clearly communicating their ideas in writing.


Each and every day, our learners are presented with opportunities to focus on thinking, reading, writing, and communicating in all curricular areas to allow our learners to build strong literacy foundations that are fundamental for students’ participation in today’s world.

Our students’ learning goals include:

-Understanding, interpreting and reading strategically with comprehension

-Communicating their understandings and learning through writing with clarity

Our learners across all grades experience learning opportunities aimed at increasing the literacy success rates of our learners.  To highlight and determine overall successes and gaps, we monitored the progress of two cohorts for each goal area.

In all areas of learning, students read.  They read about art, music, sports, culture, history, geography, and life sciences.  Reading connects them to the world and introduces them to new learning.  Reading allows for a deeper understanding of the world.  Through examining texts, letters and words the act of reading is a significant part of development in making sense of the world, fitting in to the world and making social and emotional connections to the world.  Reading both fiction and non-fiction is an important part of this process. 


Reading is a cornerstone of our English Language Arts curriculum, offering more than just literacy and language skills. It's a transformative force that helps students communicate effectively, express ideas clearly, and think critically and creatively. When students read widely, they not only learn about different cultures and perspectives but also develop empathy by understanding others' experiences. For example, including the rich heritage of the First Peoples in our reading materials honors their culture and encourages respect for diverse worldviews. Moreover, reading empowers students to confidently express their thoughts and feelings. 

When conferencing with the cohort, teachers reported that compared to their November reading assessments in May, 74% of students are reading at or above grade level, with the majority reaching proficiency for reading and reading comprehension.  We recognize that 26% of our cohort is working below grade level and therefore we will continue to support students in developing their reading fluency and comprehension.

November Reading Assessments
May Reading Assessments
Emerging20%Emerging 10%
Developing 15%Developing 16%
Proficient 45%Proficient 24%
Extending 20%Extending

One cohort teacher has expressed that this year, the collaborative use of decodable readers, targeted instruction is phonics, incorporating rich reading materials with science and socials, as well as giving students many opportunities throughout the day to explore reading and writing in a variety of ways has made a big difference for all learners, but in particular to those students who began the year at below grade level.   Specifically, 56% of this class were below grade level in November and through the use of the above instructional strategies and resources this decreased to 28%.                                            


To take the next steps in reading, we'll continue to focus on fluency. Reading fluently—smoothly and accurately—creates a bridge to understanding what we read. By practicing reading aloud and silently, students can improve their fluency, which enhances their comprehension skills and overall engagement with texts. This ongoing emphasis on fluency alongside reading will strengthen students' ability to enjoy and connect with what they read more effectively.

Moving forward, our teachers will continue to focus their instruction on further developing reading fluency and comprehension across all grade levels.  Our teachers will look to go deeper with building strong readers by working collaboratively across grade groups by continuing their work with new resources introduced this year which incorporate opportunities for building phonemic awareness skills-  improve both reading fluency and comprehension. 

Surrey Schools

Formed in 1906, the Surrey School District currently has the largest student enrolment in British Columbia and is one of the few growing districts in the province. It is governed by a publicly elected board of seven trustees.

The district serves the cities of Surrey and White Rock and the rural area of Barnston Island.

Surrey Schools
14033 - 92 Avenue Surrey,
British Columbia V3V 0B7