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Debbie Diller, a national educational consultant and popular conference speaker, lives in Houston, Texas. Debbie uses her experience of over 40 years as a classroom teacher, Title I reading specialist, and literacy coach to teach others about sensible, realistic ways to meet the literacy needs of all students in the classroom. She is the author of many books for Stenhouse Publishers, including her newest Growing Independent Learners, as well as Math Work Stations, Spaces & Places, Making the Most of Small Groups, Literacy Work Stations, and Practice with Purpose. She has several videos on literacy work stations and small group instruction, as well as a new online course on Growing Independent Learners.
Debbie Diller has revolutionized literacy instruction in countless classrooms over the years, demonstrating how to effectively use literacy workstations to engage students in critical literacy learning. In Growing Independent Learners: From Literacy Standards to Stations, K-3, she provides a comprehensive guide to help you plan instruction focused on literacy standards, organize your classroom for maximum benefit, and lead your students to independence through whole-group lessons, small-group focus, and partner learning at literacy stations.
The first four chapters lay the foundation with planning, organizing, and instruction that are essential for success with literacy workstations. From creating a model classroom and developing planning tools to using anchor charts, Diller gives you creative ideas for making the most of your classroom environment to support student independence.
Later chapters focus on standards-based instruction built around key reading, writing, and foundational skills as well as speaking, listening, and language standards. Each of these chapters provides the following:
Detailed explanations of each standard’s importance and real-world application examples
Planning tools including academic vocabulary, modifiable lesson plans for whole group instruction, and suggestions for literacy workstations
Mentor texts to use during whole group, small group, or stations
Over 400 full-color photos demonstrating workstations in action
Ways to connect lessons into other areas of daily instruction, including independent reading time, small-group instruction, and workstations
Growing Independent Learners will help you create a vibrant classroom filled with independent learners. This book will quickly become an essential resource for any teacher who believes that all children can learn to work independently in a classroom that’s well organized and mindfully planned.
Math Work Stations
If you've ever questioned how to make math stations work, you'll find this photo-filled, idea-packed resource invaluable. This book extends Debbie Diller's best-selling work on literacy work stations and classroom design to the field of mathematics. In Math Work Stations you'll find ideas to help children develop conceptual understanding and skills, use math vocabulary as they talk about their mathematical thinking, and connect big ideas to meaningful independent exploration and practice. This book details how to set up, manage, and keep math stations going throughout the year. There's even a chapter devoted solely to organizing and using math manipulatives. Each chapter includes:
key concepts based on NCTM and state math standards;
math vocabulary resources and literature links;
suggested materials to include at each station for the corresponding math content strand;
ideas for modeling, troubleshooting, differentiating, and assessment; and
reflection questions for professional development.
Throughout the book, Debbie has included hundreds of color photos showing math work stations in action from a variety of classrooms in which she has worked. Charts, reproducible forms, and math work stations icons are included to provide everything you'll need to get started with stations in your classroom right away.
Literacy Work Stations
Ever wonder what the rest of your class should be doing while you are working with a small reading group? Debbie Diller offers practical suggestions in Literacy Work Stations: Making Centers Work for over a dozen literacy work stations that link to classroom instruction and make preparation and management easy for teachers. Learn how to set up work stations, how to manage them, and how to keep them going throughout the year.
Each chapter includes:
How to introduce each station
Which materials to include at which station
What to model the station as
How to solve problems and differentiate
How to assess while keeping students accountable
Reflection questions for professional development
Materials in both English and Spanish are provided in the extensive resource section. Throughout the book the author has included photos of literacy workstations from a variety of classrooms in which she has worked to illustrate the methods discussed in the text. Literacy Work Stations is a go-to classroom resource that will help you keep all students engaged while you focus in on small groups.
Practice with Purpose
In her 30 years as an educator, Debbie Diller has closely examined classroom practice, asking "Why? What's the purpose?" Watching primary students work successfully at literacy work stations, she wondered with teachers, "Why don't we have upper-grade students doing this? Could we kick it up a notch?"
In her new book, Debbie shows teachers of grades three-to-six how to structure their classrooms so that all students can be successful doing meaningful independent work using literacy work stations.
Practice with Purpose offers guidance on establishing routines for independent reading and response writing, as well as step-by-step instructions on how to set up and manage a variety of hands-on literacy work stations appropriate for intermediate students. Each chapter includes:
how to introduce the station;innovative ways to use materials;what to model to guarantee independence;how to troubleshoot;assessment and accountability ideas;how the station supports student achievement on state tests;reflection questions for professional development.
The extensive appendix includes time-saving tools such as management board icons, graphic organizers, task cards, and recommended Web sites and children's literature.
Making the Most of Small Groups
Author Debbie Diller turns her attention to small reading groups and the teacher's role in small-group instruction. Making the Most of Small Groups: Differentiation for All grapples with difficult questions regarding small-group instruction in elementary classrooms such as:
How do I find the time?
How can I be more organized?
How do I form groups?
How can I differentiate to meet the needs of all of my students?
Structured around the five essential reading elements—comprehension, fluency, phonemic awareness, phonics, and vocabulary—the book provides practical tips, sample lessons, lesson plans and templates, suggestions for related literacy work stations, and connections to whole-group instruction. In addition to ideas to use immediately in the classroom, Diller provides an overview of relevant research and reflection questions for professional conversations.
Spaces & Places
From Debbie Diller, author of numerous best-selling books and videos on literacy work stations and small group reading instruction, comes another practical resource filled with ideas you can use immediately to better manage your classroom and support student learning and independence.
In Spaces & Places: Designing Classrooms for Literacyyou'll find a wealth of full-color photos from all sorts of classroom spaces in PreK-5th grade, including well-organized areas for whole group and small group reading instruction, classroom libraries, literacy work stations, teacher desks, and storage areas. You'll love the "before and after" pictures and the step-by-step processes outlined for organizing your furniture and cabinets, setting up your room space by space, and using your walls thoughtfully. Diller has even documented how to pack your room at the end of the year to save time next fall (so you can focus on thinking about instruction) and what to do if you must move all your belongings.
Through pictures and text, this unique visual reference answers tough questions educators ask, such as:
What do I really need in my room and what's the best way to set it up?
How does my physical classroom impact student learning?
How can I find the space I need to teach more effectively?
What can I get rid of and how?
Where do I put all my stuff?
Charts, reproducible forms, motivating quotes, a list of shopping sources, and reflection questions are included, along with a section outlining ten specific suggestions for on-going staff development. Whether or not you implement literacy work stations in your classroom, Spaces & Placesincludes everything you need to look deeply at classroom space and how it supports instruction.
Mathematizing Children’s Literature
Sparking Connections, Joy, and Wonder Through Read-Alouds and Discussion