Tammy Mulligan co-authored It’s All About the Books and Assessment in Perspective. At work, you can find her teaching second graders at the Hanscom Primary School. On other days, she is in her garden, hiking in the woods, or hiding behind a pile of children’s books. Connect with Tammy on Twitter @TammyBMulligan or on Instagram @TammyReadsKidLit.
Tammy Mulligan leads us through a mini-unit of study designed to help young readers notice, explore, and understand literary language.
This week’s newsletter is about finding joy in challenging readers.
Tammy Mulligan turns to her students for advice on how to make phonics lessons “sticky.” The Be the Teacher Center was created and has become a staple in her primary classroom.
The Choice Literacy Book Club discusses Apple and Magnolia.
Tammy Mulligan organizes her second graders to teach reading seminars to their peers. She outlines the steps to make this engaging practice a reality in any classroom.
In this video, Austin reads his writing and shares his next steps by self-recording a video to upload to the Learning Management System.
Tammy Mulligan promotes independence in her student writers by supporting them in creating writing plans. A download of a planning template is included so your students can create writing plans, too.
Tammy Mulligan and Ruth Ayres discuss new content related listening to readers, as well as opening the school year.
Tammy Mulligan encourages students to support their peers as writers by being a “roving student conferrer.” When we enable students to take on the role of the teacher, it helps solidify what they know, as well as take pride in their writing skills.
Tammy Mulligan shares her quick thinking when students are bored with book clubs and reminds us all of the importance of offering playful choice for students to show their learning.
Tammy Mulligan shares the vulnerable process of forming heterogeneous groups for book discussions.
Tammy Mulligan offers tips for creating shared-writing texts online.
Tammy Mulligan shares small and mighty moves when assessing students online.
Tammy Mulligan finds shared writing is her go-to strategy for teaching young learners online.
Tammy Mulligan listens to students and adapts her small-group instruction as they share how they learn.
Tammy Mulligan shares how she introduces students to the process of interpreting literature at different grade and developmental levels.
Tammy Mulligan contemplates the unique pleasure of finishing a piece of writing, as well as the challenges of helping students figure out what’s next.
Teaching comprehension skills can be a complex and overwhelming task. Tammy Mulligan shares a process for expanding and deepening student interpretations of text.
Tammy Mulligan explains the process of having students analyze and create models of good writing and analysis for assessing themselves and peers.
Tammy Mulligan explains how the use of the popular “reading mats” can help build reader confidence.
Tammy Mulligan considers the rituals she has for preparing to write, and then uses what she learns in classroom writing workshops.
Whenever a tricky literary concept comes up, Tammy Mulligan finds herself returning to a favorite mentor text to guide students. She explains the value of shared simple stories for understanding complicated literary elements.
Tammy Mulligan shares the importance of giving students choice and agency with book club tools to improve engagement and quality of the conversations.
Tammy Mulligan shares how teachers can move seamlessly from thoughtful conversations during whole-class read alouds to lively book clubs.
Are your conversations during read aloud stilted or shallow? Tammy Mulligan recommends weekly “grand conversations” to spark more thoughtful talk. She provides the tools you need to get started in your classroom.
Tammy Mulligan enhances the quality of the class read aloud and student discussions with the use of a whole-class response notebook.
When it comes to including and understanding others, it may be hardest to empathize with those who disrupt or bully others. Tammy Mulligan shares her four favorite mentor texts for understanding students who are angry and lash out.
Clare Landrigan and Tammy Mulligan explain the concept of “detour texts”—picture books to use as mentor texts in the intermediate grades to illustrate complex literary elements. They also share three of their favorite new children’s books to use as detours.
Clare Landrigan and Tammy Mulligan share some of their favorite mentor texts for a unit on letter writing.
Clare Landrigan and Tammy Mulligan take a child step by step through the process of creating a meaningful writing goal.
If it’s not sudden release of responsibility or no release of responsibility, what does gradual look like? Clare Landrigan and Tammy Mulligan bring this model to life.
Clare Landrigan and Tammy Mulligan are using reading notebook covers in ingenious ways.
Clare Landrigan and Tammy Mulligan share wise advice about launching workshops in kindergarten.
Clare Landrigan and Tammy Mulligan find that a little effort at the end of the school year pays big dividends when launching workshops in the fall.
Clare Landrigan and Tammy Mulligan explain why it is important to share data with parents while school is still in session in order to avoid the summer slide. This is another installment in their summer reading series.
Clare Landrigan and Tammy Mulligan have advice for making summer reading plans with students. This is the next installment in their summer reading series.
Clare Landrigan and Tammy Mulligan share tips for getting books to students for summer reading. This is the first installment in their new summer reading series.
Clare Landrigan and Tammy Mulligan provide previewing how-to advice for grades K-2 teachers.
Clare Landrigan and Tammy Mulligan manage to synthesize workspace cleanup, student independence, and a concrete analogy for strategy work in classrooms.
Clare Landrigan and Tammy Mulligan have some practical advice for using drawing, talk, and routines as ways into understanding writing revision for learners in the primary grades.
Clare Landrigan and Tammy Mulligan present some of the anecdotes and research they would share with parents during open houses and conferences.
Clare Landrigan and Tammy Mulligan share two of their favorite protocols for building community among educators.
Tammy Mulligan and Clare Landrigan talk with Franki Sibberson about strategies for getting the most out of observing in a colleague’s classroom.
As the data pours in throughout the year, it’s hard to keep a sense of balance and purpose. Tammy Mulligan and Clare Landrigan chat with Franki Sibberson in this podcast about data and balance.
In this podcast, Clare Landrigan and Tammy Mulligan, the founders ofÂ Teachers for Teachers, talk with Franki Sibberson about how to link grade level team meetings with student achievement, and build stronger teaching communities at the same time.
The gap between a child learning a phonetic rule and actually being able to apply it is one that often vexes teachers. Clare Landrigan and Tammy Mulligan find systematic planning and routines for focused small-group work help many of their colleagues succeed in their phonics instruction.
Knowing our most sophisticated professions use checklists to get it right, Clare Landrigan and Tammy Mulligan share and explain checklists that work well for students.
For teacher leaders who are called upon to do demonstration lessons, here is a “must-have” list of short, potent books.
Tammy Mulligan works with two seven-year-olds to teach them strategies for building reading stamina.
Tammy Mulligan and Clare Landrigan work with a kindergarten teacher to integrate literacy skill development into this favorite routine of young children.
In the day-to-day triage of our schools and the sense of urgency that pushes us to always be accountable for every minute of the day, it is understandable that we tend to forget to pause to think about our larger goals. No one wants to “waste time.” This activity helps everyone keep the big picture in mind.
Clare Landrigan and Tammy Mulligan learn important lessons about planning, themes, and life when they share Knuffle Bunny with a group of kindergartners.
Tammy Mulligan and Clare Landrigan found that even though the group share is the shortest part of the workshop, teachers reported many issues that needed attention. These issues can be resolved with attention to the framework, modeling and more.
Clare Landrigan and Tammy Mulligan explain how literacy coaches can validate and support teachers by helping them refine their classroom notetaking skills.
Sharing a common teaching vision begins with a common language, but not a script. Clare Landrigan and Tammy Mulligan share how teachers can work together to develop consistent ways of talking about literacy learning.
There are many traps for new literacy coaches that are rarely discussed. Clare Landrigan and Tammy Mulligan share the most common four they try to avoid.
Research, decide, and teach – Clare Landrigan and Tammy Mulligan use Lucy Calkins’ wise advice in assessment conferences with children.
Clare Landrigan and Tammy Mulligan have advice for teachers and literacy coaches leading demonstration lessons.
What are the hallmarks of professional learning communities that work well in schools?
Tammy Mulligan and Clare Ladrigan give advice on creating schedules for literacy coaches that integrate district goals and teacher interests.
Retelling is an essential skill for readers, and it’s one that is crucial for success on most state exams too. In Part 1 of a two-part series, Clare Landrigan and Tammy Mulligan share strategies and sample lessons.
The draft stamp is a simple tool for tracking and accountability, no matter the age of the learner.
Retelling is an essential skill for readers, and it’s one that is crucial for success on most state exams too. In Part 2 of a two-part series, Clare Landrigan and Tammy Mulligan share strategies and sample lessons in this installment.
Clare Landrigan and Tammy Mulligan offer lesson suggestions for helping students self-monitor and deal with distractions during literacy workshops.
Clare Landrigan and Tammy Mulligan consider how the incredibly useful and widely accepted “just right” term can sometimes limit how students think about book selection and their identities as readers. This essay includes sample lessons to help expand the ways young readers think about and discuss their reading preferences.
Tammy Mulligan and Clare Landrigan have ideas for staying motivated while analyzing data. If you’re drowning in assessments, there are a few lifelines in this piece.
Clare Landrigan and Tammy Mulligan discuss ways teachers can get the most out of any assessment data collected early in the year, moving beyond numbers for insights into how to structure and target instruction.
Clare Landrigan and Tammy Mulligan offer three strategies to use during writing conferences with struggling students.
Literacy leaders are spending more and more time organizing, compiling, and storing assessment data, often leaving little time to analyze the findings with teachers.Â Clare Landrigan and Tammy Mulligan explain the value of enlisting tech support to assist with the data load.
How can teachers use assessment data in conferences with parents, without overwhelming them with information? Clare Landrigan and Tammy Mulligan recommend a "data snippets" approach.
Clare Landrigan and Tammy Mulligan discuss the concept of “challenge” in considering what texts are the best fit for advanced young readers who might be able to decode any text, but don’t yet have the experiences needed to tackle sophisticated concepts.
No data point for any child stands alone. Clare Landrigan and Tammy Mulligan write about the importance of triangulating data when looking at student assessments, and in the process affirm the value of classroom observations.
Clare Landrigan and Tammy Mulligan remind us that our own children are often our best teachers. Here they share all they learned from their children during a summer of writing together.
Clare Landrigan and Tammy Mulligan share strategies and seven different observation templates for participants to download and try out.
Using data to make wise decisions about students who are struggling is one of the most important tasks in schools. In this series, Clare Landrigan and Tammy Mulligan take you through the process of linking data to instruction plans in intervention programs.
Discussions with parents of precocious young readers can be tricky. Clare Landrigan and Tammy Mulligan have some tips for these conferences.
Tammy Mulligan and Clare Landrigan share their top tips for improving team meetings.
Clare Landrigan and Tammy Mulligan suggest a few tested and successful protocols for meetings and study groups that foster more thoughtful conversations.
Get the most of your one-on-one coaching conferences with these suggestions from Clare Landrigan and Tammy Mulligan.
Clare Landrigan and Tammy Mulligan share many nonthreatening techniques to break down resistance among teachers to classroom visits and collaboration.
Clare Landrigan and Tammy Mulligan write about how to share the research base and goal of producing lifelong readers with families in understandable terms. The article includes a handout to share at parent meetings.
No matter how many education methods courses and professional development workshops you take, if you’re a parent, your children will always teach you the most about how students learn. Tammy Mulligan shares three practical strategies for reaching struggling readers that she learned from experiences with her son.
Clare Landrigan and Tammy Mulligan present some teacher question and reflection prompts for helping struggling readers understand why and how reading is a meaning-making process.
Text selection for English language learners poses special challenges. Clare Landrigan and Tammy Mulligan explain how the criteria for “just-right books” are different for ELLs, and provide practical examples of how teachers use these principles of book selection in their classrooms.
Clare Landrigan and Tammy Mulligan provide some sports analogies to share with families when talking about reading growth. The article includes a handout of prompts parents can use to spark discussions about books with their children.
Is the use of reading logs getting a little stale in your classroom? Clare Landrigan and Tammy Mulligan have suggestions for assessing and refreshing the activity.
Have you ever struggled as a literacy leader to explain the balance between creativity and common standards in teaching; between shared expectations and individuality? Clare Landrigan and Tammy Mulligan present an analogy that might help.
Clare Landrigan and Tammy Mulligan provide an activity for staff meetings designed to help schools sort through the purpose and value of current assessments.
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