This class will provide future teachers and parents with the theory, research and best practices related to the developmental nature of learning to read and write and to the individual differences that come into play in the learning process. An introduction to language structures including spoken syllables, phonemes, graphemes and morphemes as applied to both first- and second-language acquisition, typical development, and exceptionalities will be provided, as well an overview of the contributions of neuroscience to our understanding of the phases of literacy development. In addition, we will examine language and culture in the classroom as related to debates and policy about identity, dialects, equality, code-switching, and Standard/Mainstream English. There is a field experience component required for this class. This course is a prerequisite for elementary candidates to the MAT and fulfills a Maryland certification requirement in the teaching of reading. A required field experience component is built into this course, in addition to time spent in class.