Effective, intentional teaching begins with a strong set of beliefs, but even the best teachers -- including author Debbie Miller -- struggle to make sure that their classroom practice consistently reflects their core convictions. In Teaching with Intention: Defining Beliefs, Aligning Practice, Taking Action, K-5, Miller defines her actions to ensure that children are the true beneficiaries of her teaching. As Peter Johnston writes, "Through this book we have Debbie's teaching mind on loan. She engages us in the details of a teaching life from inside her mind, showing the thinking behind her teaching and the consequences of her actions."
Teaching with Intention brings us into classrooms of teachers and children Miller has met over the last five years in her work as a literacy consultant. From setting up the classroom environment to the intentional use of language, from comprehension instruction to lesson design, Miller is explicit about what she does and why. At the same time, she encourages teachers to develop their own belief statements concerning teaching and learning and includes key questions to guide them in this important process.
In an environment where the handing down of scripted programs and "foolproof" curricula is increasingly the norm, Teaching with Intention offers a compelling reminder that truly transformative teaching is built from the ground up, and is rebuilt every year, by every teacher, in every classroom, with every new group of students.
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.
Primary-grade teachers face an important challenge: teaching children how to read while enabling them to build good habits so they fall in love with reading. Many teachers find the independent reading workshop to be the component of reading instruction that meets this challenge because it makes it possible to teach the reading skills and strategies children need and guides them toward independence, intention, and joy as readers.
In Growing Readers, Kathy Collins helps teachers plan for independent reading workshops in their own classrooms. She describes the structure of the independent reading workshop and other components of a balanced literacy program that work together to ensure young students grow into strong, well-rounded readers. Kathy outlines a sequence of possible units of study for a yearlong curriculum. Chapters are devoted to the individual units of study and include a sample curriculum as well as examples of mini-lessons and reading conferences. There are also four “Getting Ready” sections that suggest some behind-the-scenes work teachers can do to prepare for the units. Topics explored in these units include:print and comprehension strategies;reading in genres such as poetry and nonfiction;connecting in-school reading and out-of-school reading;developing the strategies and habits of lifelong readers.
A series of planning sheets and management tips are presented throughout to help ensure smooth implementation.
We want our students to learn to read, and we want them to love to read. To do this we need to lay a foundation on which children build rich and purposeful reading lives that extend beyond the school day. The ideas found in Growing Readers create the kind of primary classrooms where that happens.
I See What You Mean (Second Edition)
Some educators may view diagrams, pictures, and charts as nice add-on tools for students who are visual thinkers. But Steve Moline sees visual literacy as fundamental to learning and to what it means to be human. In Moline's view, we are all bilingual. Our second language, which we do not speak but which we read and write every day, is visual. From reading maps to decoding icons to using concept webs, visual literacy is critical to success in today's world.
The first edition of I See What You Mean, published in 1995, was one of the first books for teachers to outline practical strategies for improving students' visual literacy. In this new and substantially revised edition, Steve continues his pioneering role by including dozens of new examples of a wide range of visual texts--from time maps and exploded diagrams to digital tools like smartphone apps and "tactile texts." In addition to the new chapters and nearly 200 illustrations, Steve has reorganized the book in a useful teaching sequence, moving from simple to complex texts.
In one research strategy, called recomposing, Steve shows how to summarize paragraphs of information not as a heap of "interesting facts" but as a diagram. The diagram can then work as a framework for students to follow when writing an essay. This overcomes the teacher's problem of "cut and paste" essays, and, by following their own diagram-summary, students have an answer to their familiar questions, "Where do I start? What do I write next?
Linda J. Dorn and Carla Soffos:::100311
Shaping Literate Minds
How can teachers create a literacy curriculum that builds processing links between reading, writing, and spelling knowledge? In Shaping Literate Minds: Developing Self Regulated Learners, Linda J. Dorn and Carla Soffos illustrate how processing theory can be applied to the everyday practices of classroom teaching.
If instruction emphasizes the interrelationships of these three language areas, students learn how to transfer knowledge, skills, and strategies across literacy events. This is complex theory, but the authors provide clear and practical examples to support teachers as they incorporate these ideas into their classroom practices.
Grounded in authentic experiences from primary classrooms, this book provides:
Explanations of processing behaviors among reading, writing, and spelling knowledge
Observational tools that support teachers in noticing changes over time in specific literacy behaviors
Guidance on creating conditions for developing self-regulated learners
Authentic reading and writing samples and teacher/student interactions
Figures and pictures that clearly describe how teachers can use assessment to inform and guide instruction, with links to national standards
Details for establishing a school-based literacy model that includes team meetings, assessment walls, high standards, and a curriculum for literacy
Appendixes with reproducible assessment checklists, report cards, task cards for literacy corners, and guided reading observation forms for team meetings
With a national emphasis on accountability, high standards, and literacy achievement, Shaping Literate Minds will help teachers and administrators implement a high-quality literacy curriculum that links to national and state goals.
Kimberly Hill Campbell and Kristi Latimer:::100086
Beyond the Five Paragraph Essay
Love it or hate it, the five-paragraph essay is perhaps the most frequently taught form of writing in classrooms of yesterday and today. But have you ever actually seen five-paragraph essays outside of school walls? Have you ever found it in business writing, journalism, nonfiction, or any other genres that exist in the real world? Kimberly Hill Campbell and Kristi Latimer reviewed the research on the effectiveness of the form as a teaching tool and discovered that the research does not support the five-paragraph formula. In fact, research shows that the formula restricts creativity, emphasizes structure rather than content, does not improve standardized test scores, inadequately prepares students for college writing, and results in vapid writing. In Beyond the Five-Paragraph Essay, Kimberly and Kristi show you how to reclaim the literary essay and create a program that encourages thoughtful writing in response to literature. They provide numerous strategies that stimulate student thinking, value unique insight, and encourage lively, personal writing, including the following:
Close reading (which is the basis for writing about literature)
Low-stakes writing options that support students' thinking as they read
Collaboration in support of discussion, debate, and organizational structures that support writing as exploration
A focus on students' writing process as foundational to content development and structure
The use of model texts to write in the form of the literature students are reading and analyzing
The goal of reading and writing about literature is to push and challenge our students' thinking. We want students to know that their writing can convey something important: a unique view to share, defend, prove, delight, discover, and inspire. If we want our students to be more engaged, skilled writers, we need to move beyond the five-paragraph essay.
Franki Sibberson, Karen Szymusiak, and Lisa Koch:::100076
Beyond Leveled Books 2nd Edition
In Beyond Leveled Books, Second Edition, Franki Sibberson, Karen Szymusiak, and Lisa Koch provide even more resources to help teachers understand and meet the needs of transitional readers. The key topic of series books has been revised and enlarged, with charts outlining new series with the challenges they pose and supports readers need. New lessons have been added, and most chapters now include a related article from a literacy expert. Some of the contributors include Kathy Collins, Larry Swartz, and Mary Lee Hahn.
Leveled books are an indispensable tool for teaching children to read, especially for emergent readers, but the authors of Beyond Leveled Booksare sounding the alarm about the overuse and misuse of leveling and the way it restricts teacher autonomy and undermines student choice and reading engagement. The authors lay out a blueprint for using leveled books effectively within a student-centered and differentiated approach that is designed to motivate all readers, particularly transitional ones.
Teaching Transitional Readers: Beyond Leveled Booksis packed with resources to help teachers understand and meet the needs of transitional readers, including examples of classroom instruction, sample mini-lessons, strategies for small-group instruction, assessment techniques, and articles by literacy experts
Resources for K-5 Classrooms: The book explores the uses and limitations of leveled texts in primary reading instruction, including ideas for how to organize your classroom library and a list of great books and series to use alongside leveled text in supporting new readers
Gateway to Independent Reading: The authors provide explicit tools for helping students consolidate their skills and reading strategies, to read widely and deeply, to increase their vocabulary, and build critical thinking
Making Reading Fun: Teach students to experience joy from reading through deeper comprehension and application
Beyond Leveled Books is an essential resource for K-5 teachers looking to help all readers, including budding readers, struggling readers, transitional readers, and readers who have plateaued.
Literature Circles, second edition
What do we know about literature circles now that we didn't understand eight or ten years ago? What new resources and procedures can help teachers organize their classroom book clubs better? What are the most common pitfalls in implementing student-led discussion groups? And getting beyond the basics, what do mature or "advanced" literature circles look like?
In this thoroughly revised and expanded guide, you will find new strategies, structures, tools, and stories that show you how to launch and manage literature circles effectively. Advanced variations are explored and include alternatives to role sheets and flexible new guidelines for their use.
The second edition includes:
four different models for preparing students for literature circles using response logs, sticky notes, and newly designed role sheets;dozens of variations on the basic version of student-led bookclubs;new models and procedures for primary, intermediate, and high school grades;new materials for assessing and grading literature circles;an inventory of common management problems and solutions;new scheduling patterns for group meetings and reading time;ideas for using literature circles with nonfiction texts across the curriculum;research on literature circles, including correlation with increased achievement on standardized tests;an explanation of how literature circles match with the national standards for literacy education.
With detailed examples provided by twenty practicing teachers, Harvey Daniels offers practical and concrete suggestions for each aspect of book club management and proven solutions for problems that arise.
Reading for Real
Take two to four kids, give them a basket of books that go together in some way, and then provide time for them to read, think, and talk together about their ideas, their questions, their wonderings. That's the simple recipe for a reading club, and Kathy Collins demonstrates the powerful results in her new book, Reading for Real. She writes, "The reading clubs I describe are a formal structure providing students with time to read and talk about books with a high level of engagement, purpose, and joy."
Just as adults join clubs to share and talk about common interests, reading clubs allow kids to immerse themselves in topics and ideas they care about -- whether it's turtles, fairy tales, a beloved author, a favorite new series, or the desire to get better at reading aloud to a baby brother or sister. While they are reading and talking about their interests and passions, students in reading clubs are also orchestrating all of the reading skills and strategies they've learned and applying them in real-life ways.
The book offers step-by-step support for implementing these classroom reading clubs, including:specific suggestions for planning cycles of reading clubs;detailed charts with a variety of teaching ideas that can be implemented immediately;ideas for mini-lessons and examples of reading conferences to support students as they learn strategies and hone their reading and discussion skills;suggestions for differentiating instruction; support for launching and fostering reading partnerships across the year;appendixes with examples of note-taking sheets and sample planning guides for several kinds of reading clubs.
While Kathy presents ideas for implementing reading clubs during reading workshop in a balanced literacy framework, the information she provides will be helpful for any teacher who wants to foster the joy of reading by offering students support and opportunities to read for authentic purposes and to have conversations about topics that interest and engage them. After all, we don't just want kids to learn to read, we want them to love to read.
When we open the gates to nonfiction inquiry, we open our thinking and expect the unexpected, making reading discoveries, research discoveries, and writing discoveries on our way. Nonfiction Matters offers teachers the tools to help students explore nonfiction and dig deep to reach more complete understanding of the real world and report these insights in a compelling manner.
Stephanie Harvey shows how students can read expository text, engage in research, and write authentic nonfiction that is captivating, visual, and full of voice. The inquiry projects she describes require in-depth learning: topic selection, question development, research exploration, reading for content, organization, synthesis, writing to convey meaning, and presenting findings—all skills that develop independent thinkers who know how to make decisions, solve problems, and apply their knowledge insightfully.
Full of practical suggestions to help you bring nonfiction into your curriculum, Nonfiction Matters:presents strategies for understanding expository text and conducting meaningful research;offers ideas for organizing and writing accurate, effective nonfiction from idea to finished presentation;advances the importance of teacher modeling and guided practice in instructional delivery;provides a list of inquiry tools and resources—both print and electronic;suggests ways to facilitate project-based learning and assess the projects as they develop;includes bibliographies of nonfiction children's books by subject and genre and lists of recommended magazines.
Why is nonfiction almost a guaranteed success? The key to teaching with nonfiction is passion, for children are passionate inquirers, and nonfiction fuels their curiosity and their demand for knowledge and understanding of the world.
When Writing Workshop Isn't Working
Writing is hard work. Teaching it can be even harder. As most teachers know, writer's workshop doesn't always go as planned, and many find there are obstacles that they consistently struggle with. In his role as a literacy coordinator and teacher, Mark Overmeyer has heard the same issues raised again and again by both new and experienced colleagues. When Writing Workshop Isn't Working: Answers to Ten Tough Questions, Grades 2-5 provides practical advice to overcome these common problems and get your writing workshop back on track. Acknowledging the process-based nature of the writing workshop, this book does not offer formulaic, program-based, one-size-fits–all answers, but presents multiple suggestions based on what works in real classrooms. The ten key questions this book addresses include:
How do I help students who don't know what to write about?
How do I help students develop stronger vocabulary and word choice?
How do I prepare my students for standardized tests without compromising my writing program?
How should I assess student writing?
How can I help my students use revision effectively?
This book is a handy reference tool for answering specific questions as they pop up during the year. Overmeyer uses student examples throughout to help teachers envision these solutions in their own classes, and he includes an array of classroom-tested ideas for helping primary and intermediate English language learners.
There may not be any easy answers to the complexities of writer's workshop, but by identifying and providing advice on the most common stumbling blocks one encounters, When Writing Workshop Isn't Working provides a solid groundwork—freeing up time and creativity for teachers to address the specific needs of their students.
Lisa C. Miller:::100113
Make Me a Story
When teachers and students first learn about digital stories, they often focus on the bells and whistles: images, music, sound effects, and so on. To Lisa Miller, a good digital story -- like any good story -- is all about the writing. In Make Me a Story, Lisa shows how to use digital stories to lead students through all phases of the writing process, from planning to revising and editing.
Digital storytelling uses computers and software to marry text with art -- photographs, drawings, paintings, and video -- as well as narration and music. Lisa leads teachers step-by-step through the process of writing a digital story in an accessible (even for the computer neophyte), instructional, and entertaining way. Through the projects outlined in the book, students learn how to write good stories, make art and text work together, and use technology in creative ways.
Make Me a Story discusses different types of digital stories, shows how to assess digital assignments and motivate reluctant writers, and explains how digital storytelling teaches skills supported by national education and technology standards. Teachers will find specific suggestions for writing exercises and various ways to get students thinking about how best to tell their stories. The accompanying CD includes examples of student stories discussed in the text.
Heather Willms and Giacinta Alberti:::100263
This Is How We Teach Reading . . . and It's Working!
This timely book offers a clear and structured method for integrating explicit phonics instruction into K–3 classrooms. An essential guide for teaching reading, the book is grounded in the cutting-edge, evidence-based science of reading. It provides a flexible and effective step-by-step progression that covers the essential phonics skills that teachers have been asking for, and addresses the needs of busy, diverse classrooms. This blueprint to effective instruction explores screening, assessment, and intervention, as well as working with English language learners. Tools for implementation include high-impact activities, lesson templates, word lists, phoneme-grapheme grids, word ladders, and more.
On the Same Page
Maya Angelou says, "Words mean more than what is set down on paper. It takes the human voice to infuse them with the shades of deeper meaning." On the Same Page celebrates the use of our voices in shared reading with students to help them gain deeper understanding of the texts we read. If you have enjoyed the increased engagement and motivation that accompany reading with your students and wondered how to extend those benefits throughout the day, this book offers support for using this approach as a foundation for learning across content areas.
On the Same Page explores the use of shared reading as an instructional approach for readers and writers at all levels of language proficiency. Janet Allen provides research, resources, practical ideas, and strategies for building from shared reading to increase students' literate experiences in a variety of curricular and instructional areas:strategic reading and comprehension;building background knowledge for content literacy;personal, academic, and public writing;transitions to independent reading;community knowledge and literature circles;increased vocabulary;modeled fluency.
On the Same Page is enriched with a wide range of student work as well as extensive appendices of additional resources, graphic organizers, suggested reading lists, and teaching guides for implementation of shared reading in your classroom.
Welcome to Reading Workshop
In Welcome to Reading Workshop: Structures and Routines that Support All Readers, Brenda Krupp and Lynne Dorfman bring their years of collective experience leading successful reading workshops to showcase the structures, routines, rituals, and behind-the-scenes decision making that will have your reading workshop running smoothly and effectively. Within the pages, you’ll find ways to effectively use self-selected reading materials, create mini-lessons, build time for reading conferences and small group work, and use assessments to guide instruction.
In this practical guide, you’ll find tips and ideas to make these techniques immediately attainable, including:
Recommendation lists from much loved books to classroom implementation suggestions
Easy to access video clips to extend learning
Expert contributions and tips from the field
A rich appendix with templates, lessons, and resources
Reflection questions to promote collegial conversations
Whether you’re a brand-new teacher or seasoned veteran, you’re looking to try something new or working on refining your current reading workshops, the authors welcome you to join them in an exploration of this powerful instructional model. Welcome to Reading Workshop will inspire you and your students with an excitement for reading that fosters engagement and builds life-long readers.
Starting with Comprehension
It is never too early to start comprehension instruction. In fact, reading begins with meaning making. Andie Cunningham and Ruth Shagoury designed a reading program for five- and six-year-olds based on this premise.
Most of the students in Andie's Portland, Oregon, kindergarten class have little or no alphabet knowledge when they enter the classroom in the fall. English is a second—or third—language for many of the children in this low-income neighborhood. Through research-based principles, carefully structured routines, and innovative activities, even the youngest learners can develop comprehension skills from their first days in school.
The children in Starting with Comprehension are grappling with school culture for the first time and learning to work with classmates who speak a variety of different languages. These emergent readers learn to present their understanding of what they read through writing, talk, movement, and art.
Kindergartners and preschoolers are different from readers who know how to decode texts. Andie and Ruth show how comprehension skills can be nurtured and strengthened even before decoding begins. In this classroom, meaning making becomes part of community building as children link reading, thinking, and communicating.
Anne Elliott and Mary Lynch:::100283
The 6 essential steps for nurturing writers who have the will to write is the core of this practical book. Based on extensive classroom experience, the book explores how teachers can help students tap into their own life experiences, model the habits of a writer, and make use of the tools of the trade. Strategies throughout the book show teachers how to create an environment that helps students see writing as a rewarding experience in and outside the classroom. Powerful real-life anecdotes and ready-to-use activities support this guide to developing classrooms full of thoughtful, passionate writers.
Is That a Fact?
The book you are about to read is destined to be the first, middle, and maybe even the last word on nonfiction writing for young, young children. It is certainly a text that you will return to over and over again as you do with a beloved cookbook. —from the Foreword by Tomie dePaola
Over eighty- five percent of the reading and writing we do as adults is nonfiction, yet most of the reading and writing in K–3 classrooms is fiction or personal narrative. In Is That a Fact? Teaching Nonfiction Writing K-3, Tony Stead shows you how to open the door to the rich world of nonfiction writing that goes beyond "what I did" narratives and animal reports. And he convincingly demonstrates the importance of introducing nonfiction writing in the primary grades.
Nonfiction inspires enthusiasm in young children because they can choose topics that are of interest to them personally. Is That a Fact? explores a variety of authentic purposes for writing nonfiction, such as describing, explaining, instructing, persuading, retelling, and exploring relationships with others. You will learn how to introduce each purpose using a variety of forms, including letters, reports, poetry, captions, directions, and interviews.
Part One provides a complete overview of teaching nonfiction writing in the primary grades and includes:
practical ways for organizing nonfiction resources within the classroom;how to assist children in collecting information for research;ideas for helping children keep their sense of voice when writing nonfiction;a chapter on spelling, with examples of how to guide students at each stage of spelling development;strategies for assessment and evaluation that guide teaching and learning engagements.
Part Two provides five different explorations that were implemented in actual K–3 classrooms. Each focuses on a specific purpose for writing nonfiction and features:examples of whole-class, small-group, and independent instructional engagements;a comprehensive assessment rubric that will help teachers tailor instruction to the needs of all learners;an extensive resource section that includes lists of books in the exploration, grouped by readability levels;answers to the most commonly asked questions about teaching nonfiction writing.
The appendixes include a self-assessment questionnaire, reproducible pages for exploring specific writing forms, and letters to parents.
Children need to be introduced to the different purposes of nonfiction writing. They need to know how to plan, compose, revise, and publish nonfiction beyond narrative. Is That a Fact? guides you in achieving these goals with your students.
A Year for the Books
With a focus on fostering a deep love for reading and prioritizing student growth, A Year for the Books: Routines and Mindsets for Creating Student-Centered Reading Communities is a must-have for educators from kindergarten through middle school. Discover a teacher-friendly resource crafted by Katie Walther, esteemed educator, and respected veteran teacher Maria Walther that will take you behind the scenes and through the school year as they share simple, practical strategies to design learner-centered literacy experiences.
Starting with the first few weeks of school, each chapter highlights multiple ways to embed literacy experiences across the entire year that prioritize learners and literacy. To support you in your decision making, the classroom-tested ideas in each chapter are arranged around five grounding principles:
Actionable strategies for launching and sustaining a vibrant reading culture
Clear processes to define and communicate community beliefs
Creative structures for establishing and maintaining reading routines
Innovative ideas for cultivating an inclusive reading community
Equitable techniques for partnering with families and caregivers
Within each chapter you will also find nuggets of wisdom from the Walthers' collective years of teaching, practical ideas about how to keep it simple, and several book suggestions. As an added bonus, this book features companion podcasts or PDCasts where you can hear the authors tackle authentic classroom dilemmas and share their decision-making process.
Whether you’re a novice or seasoned educator, you’ll want A Year for the Books by your side as you advocate for your student readers and promote independent reading in your classroom all year long.
The Construction Zone
Instructional scaffolding is an essential part of teaching literacy. But what is scaffolding exactly? What does it look like in a classroom, and how can we improve the ways we use it? Despite its prominence in the repertoire of teaching strategies, scaffolding remains a vague concept for many teachers.
In essence, scaffolding is the idea of supporting students as they build independence. In The Construction Zone: Building Scaffolding for Readers and Writers, Terry Thompson identifies four critical processes to deepen your understanding and improve your practice of instructional scaffolding:
· Finding and maintaining a specific focus · Practicing flexibility in planning and delivering instruction · Giving constructive feedback in response to student efforts · Monitoring to ensure that students are working at optimal levels of responsibility
Thompson encourages teachers to enhance their use of the traditional gradual release process through five actionable steps: show, share, support, sustain, and survey, and in doing so provides procedures and techniques to help them establish and maintain strong scaffolds throughout the instructional day. The Construction Zone is written from the teacher’s perspective and urges educators to fully embrace their role in the scaffolding process while staying mindful of the effect it has on students.
Taking a student from dependence upon the teacher to independent learning is what teaching is all about, and instructional scaffolding is key to accomplishing this goal. Regardless of where you are in your understanding of instructional scaffolding, The Construction Zone will raise your level of awareness around your instructional practices and the ways you scaffold students to independence.
The Writing Thief
"Mediocre writers borrow. Great writers steal." --T.S. Eliot
Writing thieves read widely, dive deeply into texts, and steal bits and pieces from great texts as models for their own writing. Author Ruth Culham admits to being a writing thief—and she wants you and your students to become writing thieves, too!
In The Writing Thief: Using Mentor Texts to Teach the Craft of Writing, Culham demonstrates a major part of good writing instruction is finding the right mentor texts to share with students. Within this book, you’ll discover more than 90 excellent mentor texts, along with straight-forward activities that incorporate the traits of writing across informational, narrative, and argument modes.
Chapters also include brief essays from beloved writing thieves such as Lester Laminack, David L. Harrison, Lisa Yee, Nicola Davies, Ralph Fletcher, Toni Buzzeo, Lola Schaefer, and Kate Messner, detailing the reading that has influenced their own writing.
Culham’s renowned easy-going style and friendly tone make this a book you'll turn to again and again as you coach your students to reach their full potential as deep, thoughtful readers and great writers. There's a writing thief in each of us when we learn how to read with a writer's eye!
Sometimes Reading is Hard
When students say that reading is boring, difficult, overwhelming, or they cannot find a good book, it is almost impossible to sell them on the idea that reading is fun and worthwhile. Sometimes Reading is Hard shows teachers how to develop the skills students need to be successful and how to cultivate passionate, lifelong readers. Classroom vignettes, promising practices, and step-by-step activities illustrate how teachers can weave teaching the skills of reading, decoding, vocabulary, comprehension, and fluency with real reasons to read. When students want to read and they enjoy it, their reading skills improve. With the right motivation, any student can become an enthusiastic reader.
Better Reading Now
Based on what we now know about reading, this practical book offers strategies in a consistent format that is easy for teachers to incorporate in their daily instruction. This grab-bag of classroom-tested activities allows teachers to choose what they need to meet the diverse needs of students in grades 1 through 8. These strategies guide students through the reading process and build important comprehension skills through reading, talk, art, drama, and more. These innovative ways to use the best children’s books inspire students to become enthusiastic and avid readers, and take the first giant step into becoming lifelong readers.
For those of us who treasure memories of a childhood spent curled up with favorite books, it may be shocking to realize that reading is a chore for many of our students. In recent years, the increased class time spent on reading instruction geared toward measurable performance -- from tests to book reports -- means fewer children have the opportunity to discover reading for pleasure, or to research topics that interest them. If we want children to become truly engaged readers, we must set aside time every day for them to independently select, read, and respond. Of course, just providing time and a variety of reading materials isn't adequate to ensure that students achieve the independence they need to become lifelong readers. Students need guidance on selecting materials at an appropriate level, they need practice in the habits of readers, and they need the social reinforcement of sharing ideas about their reading with peers.
In Good Choice!, noted author and literacy specialist Tony Stead outlines the components that foster successful independent reading in grades K-6. He examines practices that:establish independent reading and borrowing routines;provide adequate resources for independent reading;support children in selecting a wide range of appropriate texts;offer opportunities for children to respond to their reading.
With examples appropriate to emergent readers in grades K-2, as well as more seasoned readers in grades 3-6, Tony provides a comprehensive plan for integrating independent reading throughout the day. He offers systems for organizing the class library and checking books in and out, lessons on book selection and responding to text, advice on supporting children and parents in home reading, guidance on conferring with students, and an array of helpful appendix materials including graphic organizers, questionnaires, assessment and monitoring rubrics.
Research shows that children who have the opportunity to read independently not only become more literate adults, they also, in fact, perform better on state tests and other reading assessments. Good Choice! provides everything you need to create classrooms where students can fulfill their reading potential now and for the future.
Sara B Kajder:::100057
Bringing the Outside In
The reading that we value in school is becoming further and further distanced from the literacy students experience in their outside lives. Inside the classroom, we ask our students to immerse themselves in print texts and write purposefully. Once out the door, they are text-messaging, blogging, engaging in online multi-player games, and expertly integrating words, images, and music to create original texts. Can we import these textual spaces and literacies into English class to help re-connect students who don't see themselves as readers and writers?
English educator Sara Kajder's answer is an emphatic “yes,” and in Bringing the Outside In she demonstrates myriad ways to employ students' outside talents in the classroom. Drawing on multiple examples of student work, she shows how she adapts the curriculum to incorporate an expanded definition of literacy and literacy tools. Sara offers teachers guidance on how to extend their repertoire of teaching strategies, and help kids connect their natural curiosity and skills as readers and writers of both print and electronic texts, while keeping reading and writing at the center of the curriculum.
Keying in on the visual aspects of literacy, and building upon students' growing interest in using words and images from their lives to read and write for authentic reasons and authentic audiences—integrating such strategies as digital storytelling, visual think-alouds, visual literature circles, and others into English class—Sara and her kids redefine what it means to be literate in today's world. By adding visual components to class activities and projects integrating tools ranging from pencils and paper to “weblogs” and “wikis,” even reluctant students can become engaged and see themselves as readers and writers for the first time.
Lynne R. Dorfman and Rose Cappelli:::100073
How do children's book authors create the wonder that we feel when reading our favorite books? What can students and teachers learn from these authors and books if we let them serve as writing mentors? In Mentor Texts, Lynne Dorfman and Rose Cappelli show teachers how to help students become confident, accomplished writers, using literature as their foundation.
The book is organized around the characteristics of good writing—focus, content, organization, style, and conventions—and includes:mentor texts that can be used to scaffold student work;student writing examples to demonstrate how students take risks as writers;teacher writing examples to show the power of teacher as writer;a comprehensive annotated list of children's literature that includes specific suggestions for teaching points;“Your Turn” lessons at the end of each chapter that show how to put the ideas into practice.
Rose and Lynne write in a friendly and conversational style, employing numerous anecdotes to help teachers visualize the process, and offer strategies that can be immediately implemented in the classroom. Each “Your Turn” lesson is built around the gradual release of responsibility model, offering suggestions for demonstrations and shared or guided writing. Reflection is emphasized as a necessary component to understanding why mentor authors chose certain strategies, literary devices, sentence structures, and words.
This practical resource demonstrates the power of learning to read like writers. It shows teachers and students how to discover the ways that authors make writing come alive, and how to use that knowledge to inspire and improve their own writing.
Mathematizing Children’s Literature
Sparking Connections, Joy, and Wonder Through Read-Alouds and Discussion