Latest Content
Like Teacher, Like Student: Finding Emotional Support in Schools

Andie Cunningham and one of her kindergarten students share something in common at the start of the school year — tears as they struggle to find their place in a new community.

Channeling Monet

Andie Cunningham deals with the tension of welcoming an unhappy parent into her kindergarten classroom.

Learning from Kidwatching

Quiet kindergartners can be a challenge to understand when they are in the beginning stages of learning social and academic norms. Andie Cunningham uses observation to make sense of five-year-old Sierra’s learning.

Death in Books: Finding Our Way After Loss

Books can help children deal with the toughest challenges in life. In a new booklist, Andie Cunningham shares her top picks for stories about characters grappling with the death of a loved one.

Keeping Track of Questions

Andie Cunningham observes a third-grade teacher as she systematically improves the quality and depth of student questioning over time.

Understanding the Middle East Through Children’s Literature (BOOKLIST)

Sheiks, harems, and terrorists — the stereotypes of the middle east from popular culture may not be realistic, but they sure are pervasive. Ruth Shagoury and Andie Cunningham find authentic alternative views to present to children in their new booklist.

Staying Child-Centered When You Work with Adults

Andie Cunningham shares challenges and practical strategies for how literacy leaders can stay child-centered.

Volunteered: What I Learned from Cleaning Out the Barn

Andie Cunningham is "ticked and disgusted" when her boss volunteers her for yet another committee.  Cleaning out the barn clears her head, reminding Andie of all the tools and strategies literacy leaders have for dealing with whatever is flung their way.

Conferring with Vita: Working Through Silence

Andie Cunningham confers with Vita, an English language learner whose first language is Russian. Vita is in the silent period. Notice how Andie coaxes communication from Vita, and manages to convey a sense of delight at her work, an acknowledgment of Vita’s importance in the classroom community, and some guidance for future writing.

Telling Our Stories

Ruth Shagoury and Andie Cunningham beautifully weave together poetry and storytelling in a potent professional development activity for teachers.

Literacy Groundings

Andie works with new teachers as they share their literacy groundings — the moments in their histories that shaped who they are as educators.

Preschool Thank You Writing Center

Teachers Melissa Kolb and Andie Cunningham help preschoolers use the thank you writing center in this quick two-minute video.

Classroom Gifts from Carlos: Helping Young Students Learn Academic Language and Routines

It can be especially difficult for young children from impoverished homes to understand academic language and the demands of school. Andie Cunningham observes the sophisticated ways a preschool teacher helps her students adapt with invitational language.

Drawing to Words: Conferring with Luis

In this four-minute video, Andie Cunningham confers with Luis during writing workshop. Luis is a six-year-old English language learner whose passion is drawing.

Seven Minutes of Listening

What can we learn by listening closely to children? Plenty — Andie Cunningham shares insights from seven minutes with a young English language learner.

Characters I Know Too Well

Books with themes of sexual abuse may be the most difficult for many of us to grapple with, if only because the issue horrifies us. Yet for some abused teens, a book may be the needed catalyst for breaking their silence about what's going on outside school.  Andie Cunningham shares an annotated booklist on this tough topic.

“This Could Be Our Family”: Books for Children with Lesbian and Gay Parents

Andie Cunningham considers the diversity in how “families” are defined in children’s literature, as well as how some newer books can support children with lesbian or gay parents in our new booklist.

Choosing New Books for Comprehension Strategy Studies with Young Children

Ruth Shagoury and Andie Cunningham share a wealth of books appropriate for comprehension study with young children. The booklist is especially useful for work with English language learners.

Books for Strategy Studies

Andie Cunningham has some thoughtful recommendations for books to use in strategy studies.

Preschool Letter Detectives

Andie Cunningham works with three-, and four-year-olds as they become "letter detectives." This activity is a wonderful bridge between children's natural curiosity and the alphabet, suitable for preschoolers or kindergartners.

Bucking Broncs and Spitting Bulls

Andie Cunningham finds a rodeo reminds her of the opening days of school, and how timed assessments can cloud our vision of students early in the year.

Helping Classroom Volunteers Become Better Listeners

Helping volunteers understand the importance of listening to young learners is one of Andie Cunningham’s goals. Here she gives tips for preparing volunteers to confer with children.

Connecting Language and Hope: A Study Group Activity

The teaching profession needs an abundance of hope. In this creative study group activity, Andie Cunningham helps young teachers connect language and hope through art.

Creating Anchor Charts with Sticky Note Responses from Young Readers

Over-sized sticky notes are a great learning tool for kindergartners. In this video, Andie Cunningham demonstrates how she uses them with her students.

In the Zone: Conferring with a Young English Language Learner

Andie Cunningham confers with kindergartner Cristian within his "ZPD" – Zone of Proximal Development.

Understanding the “Silent Period” with English Language Learners

Ruth Shagoury and Andie Cunningham explain how to support an English Language Learner who is not speaking with verbal and nonverbal communication strategies.

The Art of Listening in Writing Conferences with English Language Learners

Ruth Shagoury and Andie Cunningham share tips for mastering the art of listening in conferences with English language learners.

Webbing to Learn: A Writing Strategy to Chart Thinking with Young Learners

Andie Cunningham and Ruth Shagoury explain how webs can be a powerful organizing tool for kindergarten writers.

Honor Books: Helping Children and Families Build Bridges Between Home and School

What does Andie Cunningham gets when she mixes pictures from the classroom, messages from families and poetry from teachers? A wonderful recipe for an Honor Book you’ll want to try with your own students.

Introducing Bull’s-Eye and Waves Written Responses in Synthesis Work

Andie Cunningham explains the bull’s-eye and wave responses her kindergartners complete to demonstrate their understanding of synthesis. A video introducing the activity is included.

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