Planning for Writing About Reading

Starting from Kindergarten we can teach students how to think deeply about books and record their thinking.  In Kindergarten and first grade students begin by recording their thinking with pictures.  Talking and writing about reading though pictures eventually leads to conventional writing about reading.  Fountas and Pinnell (2006) write that "writing increases readers' engagement with …

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The Basics of Interactive Writing

Interactive writing is a great way to teach, model, and share an authentic writing task with a k-2 classroom community. Through interactive writing, students learn how print works and become problem solvers. The teacher is able to model and teach the students something that they can try during the interactive writing process or when they …

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RTI: A Work in Progress

Response to Intervention (RTI) is a multi-tiered system of support that was created to provide students the academic support they need.  In theory, RTI would decrease the number of students misidentified for special education services, provide students with the support they need before they fail, and provide students with high-quality differentiated classroom instruction/interventions.  Although RTI …

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Have We Gone Intervention Crazy?

In our zeal to support all students in reaching grade-level goals and passing state tests, we may have lost sight of what the most important activities students should engage in while at school.  We have increased the amount of test prep activities, increased the number of assessments given and even increased the number of students …

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Tackling Vowels Within a Complex Theory of Reading

Thank you Maggie @GoReadBooks for suggesting this blog post! As we know, many of the letters in the English language have multiple sounds associated with them. Vowels sounds, in particular, can be quite tricky for some students to learn. My stance is that while learning vowel sounds is important, children should not be held back …

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Don’t Teach Strategies: Searching, Self-correcting & Confirming (part 2)

In part 1 we explored the idea of teaching strategies versus teaching for strategic activity and looked closely at self-monitoring and cross-checking.  In part 2 we will continue to explore the notion of helping our students build an effective processing system. "Decision processes that happen in the head" will serve as my overly simplified definition of …

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Don’t Teach Strategies: Self-monitoring & Cross-checking (part 1)

When teaching children to read it is important that we ask ourselves whether we are teaching strategies to our students or whether we are teaching our students to be strategic readers? You might be wondering what exactly I mean by this? What is the difference? *Just to clarify - I am using the word "strategy" …

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