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Mix It Up: Helping Young Writers Learn to Confer with Peers and Teachers

Ruth Shagoury models her own writing as a way to introduce the concept of conferring to young learners.

Poetry Friday! Poetry Books That Are Fun to Read Aloud

What do doughnuts and talk-filled mornings have in common? Learn about this Poetry Friday ritual that impacts independent reading time as well.

Family Dichos: Bringing the Language of Home into the Classroom

Ruth Shagoury and Andie Cunningham use dichos (sayings or proverbs) in many languages and cultures to build bridges between school and home.

Creative Literacy Events for Families

Brenda Power suggests formats for events that build stronger home-school connections.

Inviting Students to Organize Books and Materials

Debbie Miller advocates for involving children in the organization of materials for readers and writers in the classroom.

Room for Beliefs: Linking Classroom Design and What We Value

Debbie Miller questions what our classrooms say about our beliefs and practices, and suggests how to bring our designs into closer alignment with our values.

Letters from Home: Letting Families and Friends Teach Us

Brenda Power and Ruth Shagoury use letters from home to learn about students and build community.

On Kidney Tables: Small Changes for Big Effects

When our environment aligns with our values, Karen Szymusiak considers what helps learners take charge of their experience in a successful learning community.

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.

What’s Valued? Exploring Different Values in Evaluation (E-GUIDE)

Brenda Power shares a workshop series designed to help educators bring their values into closer alignment for a more cohesive experience for students.

We Are All Shamu: What Literacy Leaders Can Learn from Exotic Animal Trainers

If you've ever compared your classroom to a zoo, this article by Brenda Power is for you. You'll take animal trainer advice like "We change behavior in others by breaking routines in delightful ways" and follow it into the classroom.

The Other Buddy: How Partnership Programs Help Older Readers

In many buddy reading programs we often tout the benefits for the younger, less experienced reader, but Shari Frost tells the story of a “big kid” reader with a legitimate reason to read books that were closer to his independent level. Read on.

Opinion Exchange: A Workshop Activity for Study Groups

New teachers need so much their first year and having the ability to be heard and have their opinions valued is right up there. Ruth Shagoury offers a respectful exchange to meet that need.

Helping Young Readers Understand the Middle East: A Booklist of the Best Fiction Picture Books

Do your books reflect the images of your learners' families and culture? Ruth Shagoury offers a booklist to explore the Arab and Persian world.

The “All About Us” Board: Linking Literacy and Community Building All Year Long

Suzy Kaback has terrific tips for an ever-evolving “All About Us” bulletin board to use from the first day of school to the last.

Opinion Exchange (E-GUIDE)

How can quotes lead educators to awareness and acceptance of the diversity of opinions in a group? Discover what this format for discussion has to offer your study group or staff.

The Read-Around: Raising Writers

If there was a centerpiece to teaching writing that also brought students closer together, wouldn't you want to know about it? Read on about the Read-Around.

Every Language Counts: Adding Multilingual Counting Activities to Morning Meeting

Every year kindergarten teacher Andie Cunningham has children who come from homes with many different first languages. She helps welcome these different languages and cultures into the classroom community by counting in different languages during the morning meeting.

Let’s Get Some Attitude

Shirl McPhillips recalls a junior high experience that promoted serious "attitude" and an uproar among her peers.

Boys’ Book Club in Second Grade

In this video from Linda Karamatic’s second-grade classroom, boys discuss the book Fudge using the protocol provided by Linda.

The Difference Between Conferring and “Touching Base”

Debbie Miller goes against the grain, advocating for “the luscious feeling of endless time” as we slow down to confer with children.

Whole Class Interviews: Building Community in Writing Workshop (TEMPLATE)

Interviews early in the year are a potent tool for building a class community.

Book Matchmaker: Read Alouds That Invite Young Readers to Participate

Franki Sibberson shares her latest suggestions for read alouds that invite participation from young readers.
 

Fact or Fiction?

Suzy Kaback works with students to create a “fact or fiction” class book to explore the boundaries between truth and fantasy.

Routines for Building Gratitude

Bitsy Parks finds even the dreariest days in her first-grade classroom are infinitely more enjoyable because she’s built in routines for expressing gratitude.

Management and Middle School Workshops

Christy Rush-Levine lowers the tension level in her class over management issues by moving from irritation to curiosity, using her “inner chimpanzee” voice.

Call Me By My Name

Suzy Kaback reminds us that the language we use to talk about challenging students shapes our perceptions of them. That’s why she has moved to calling students “small teachers.”

Engaging Students with Humor

Mark Levine finds humor is the “secret sauce” in engaging middle school students and including introverts in the classroom community.

Lifting the Quality of Peer Response

Tony Keefer discovers that his fourth-grade students need focused instruction and support to strengthen their peer conferring skills. Tony shares tips and two video examples from his classroom.

Connecting with Students at Home

Julie Johnson learns some important lessons about connecting with students remotely, and few of them are about technology.

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