Making every minute count in the literacy block
The skills, strategies, and elements that fit under the “literacy” umbrella can seem overwhelming. In today’s classroom, balanced literacy encompasses higher-order thinking; accountable talk; collaborative learning; digital and media literacy; as well as modeled, guided, and independent learning. How can we do it all in just 100 minutes?
100 Minutes is a comprehensive look at literacy and learning that includes reading, writing, oral communication, and digital literacy. It shows teachers how to fit balanced literacy into a 100-minute literacy block using a framework of whole-class and guided small group instruction, writing sessions, and independent work. By chunking a literacy block into three distinct sections, this practical resource argues that it is possible to provide opportunities for students to engage in all aspects of literacy, have voice and choice in their learning, capitalize on their strengths, identify areas for growth, and set personal learning goals.
A comprehensive approach to teaching writing that deals not only with style, but with the writer’s inspiration and the tools and strategies that young writers need to write well. The book includes a series of rich, engaging writing prompts that teachers can use to help even the most mechanical writer begin to write with pizzazz and flair. The Write Voice is organized around seven strategies with appropriate prompts to help students seek and recognize inspiration.
- Sensory Statements: using the five senses to help the reader create a mental image
- Emotional Cues: using emotional connections to build mood
- Wordsmithing: building vocabulary and encouraging risktaking
- Developing Characters: setting the stage for action by creating interesting characters with voices of their own
- Perspectives: understanding that the person telling the story is as important as the story itself
- Personality: allowing the author’s passion and creativity to shine through
- Style: helping students understand writing conventions as a way of strengthening voice and not distracting from it
The book illustrates countless effective ways students can experiment with their own writers’ voice, engage in dialogue about their writing and the writing of their peers, and set personal goals as writers. It also addresses the importance of mentoring, setting success criteria, and consistent and ongoing peer and teacher feedback.
Integrating new literacies with classroom practice
This straightforward book will help teachers learn to use new literacies — digital, social, media, and critical literacies — to strengthen and support the “old” — reading, writing, and listening. Based on the deep belief that in order to proficiently use technology, one must be skilled at reading and writing, the book challenges teachers to use new literacies as a learning experience for both teacher and student. Keepin’ It Real explores the real risks and benefits of new forms of communication and their power as an important tool for engaging students. The world may be changing, and the tools we use to interact with it may be evolving, but the basic skills we need to actively engage with the world remain constant.
*Keepin’ it Real is available in French from Cheneliere (Title: Lire et écrire à l’ère des TIC)*
Instruction that starts with the end in mind and guides students to become more effective writers
A simple approach to developing an assessment-based writing process with students — by beginning with the end. Discover how to use exemplars to introduce students to new forms of writing and help them appreciate the elements that make them effective.
The Write Beginning argues that when young writers use success as a guide, they are able to develop a clear understanding of the process and set realistic goals for themselves. It explores the features of successful writing in different forms around the four areas of learning — knowledge, thinking, communication, and application. The book goes on to illustrate how teachers can use the success criteria as a framework for providing descriptive feedback to students as a way of guiding and improving their learning. Graphic organizers, sample rubrics, checklists, and student samples round out this comprehensive resource.
How to organize, observe, and assess reading strategies that promote deeper thinking and improve comprehension in K-6 classrooms
This innovative book shows teachers how to add value, authenticity, and accountability to independent reading programs and keep the focus on student reading. From a reproducible blank template to numerous student samples of the “Reading 8-Box”, the book illustrates how students can use a single page to strengthen and monitor their comprehension, language, and thinking skills. It offers a range of graphic organizers and open-response opportunities that help deepen student thinking and response. This non-intrusive way for teachers to monitor, assess, and support students focuses on students actively engaging in their reading. This remarkable book is committed to helping teachers better understand the needs of their students so that independent reading time is purposeful and directly connected to classroom instruction.
*Independent Reading Inside the Box is available in French from Cheneliere (Title: La lecture autonome)*
A framework for using read-aloud and other oral language experiences to build reading comprehension skills and help readers record, share, value, and interpret ideas
This comprehensive guide offers a framework for using read-aloud and other oral language experiences to build reading comprehension skills and help students record, share, value, and interpret ideas. These organizational tools free students to listen more attentively; organize their responses; and watch for subtle clues, such as body language, that are an important part of listening. The book is organized around common reading strategies, including making inferences and predictions, making connections, visualizing, asking questions, and synthesizing. Tools to complement these strategies include reproducible graphic organizers, rubrics and forms for recording student progress.