The Common Core State Standards (CCSS) emphasize literacy learning within history/social studies, science, and technical subjects making students’ reading, writing, and language development every teacher’s concern, regardless of the discipline being taught. Books related to science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) can enhance students’ knowledge of key terms and concepts as they are revealed in authentic contexts. Students who often struggle harder to understand advanced vocabulary embedded in stories or in difficult, yet interestingly presented nonfiction gain an increased print vocabulary by reading quality STEM-aligned literature selections that exhibit the characteristics of complexity and richness of language advocated by CCSS. Effectively pre-teaching vocabulary and scaffolding students’ use of self-regulation strategies to discover word meanings will increase comprehension and content literacy as well as content learning.
Giles, Rebecca M. and Kinniburgh, Leah (2013) "Common Core State Standards and Text Complexity: An Invitation to Learn Language in STEM Disciplines using a Range of Quality Literature" e-Journal of Balanced Reading Instruction 1(1), article 7. Available at http://digitalcommons.lsu.edu/jblri/vol1/iss1