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Hindsight: What I Wish I’d Known Before My School Burned Down

Melanie Quinn shares lessons from the fire that burned down her school.

Value-Added: Moving Assessments from “Inflicted” to “Student-Owned”

Gretchen Taylor looks closely at the superficial reading responses of one student, and then uses a mid-year assessment to challenge all of her middle school readers to think, talk, and write more deeply about their reading.

Don’t Be a Sneetch

Amanda Adrian ponders end-of-year celebrations, as well as the haves and have-nots, in schools.

Main Ideas, Summaries, and Notes in a Reading Conference

In this conference with a 4th grader, Aimee Buckner tackles text choice, notes, and main ideas all in less than five minutes. You’ll notice teachers observing in the background – the conference is part of a demonstration lesson sequence.

Image of the Week: Building a Classroom Community Through Visual Literacy

Teachers know visual learners are in every classroom and Andrea Smith is no exception. She uses an “image of the week” to get at high expectations, observations, publishing and of course, building community.

An Attitude of Gratitude

Heather Rader gets a couple nasty emails, and thinks through how to hold onto an attitude of gratitude when dealing with colleagues who are short-tempered or demanding.

Books Struggling Readers Can and Will Want to Read: Building the Classroom Library

Sammy is an avid reader in the classroom, but his teacher Cathy Mere notices he “accidentally” is always leaving the backpack with his intervention books behind.  The challenge for classroom teachers is stocking books with titles that will interest Sammy, but still provide enough challenge and support to move him forward as a reader.

Mentor Texts to Help Students Monitor Their Actions

Mandy Robek has a delightful list of books that help students reflect upon and monitor their behavior in the classroom.

Quick Take: Awkward Beginnings with English Language Learners

In this short video, Ruth Shagoury gives two pieces of advice to teachers who feel awkward as they are trying to communicate with young English language learners.

Book Matchmaker: Texts to Build Stamina

In this installment of Book Matchmaker, Franki Sibberson has suggestions for books to build reading stamina in students.

The DIBELS Divide (LITERACY COACH CONFIDENTIAL)

A curriculum coordinator loves DIBELS; a first-grade teacher doesn't.  We provide a range of suggestions from our contributors on dealing with disagreements over assessment.  This article is useful for teachers and literacy leaders who are working together with assessment data early in the year, no matter what evaluative system your school or district has in place.

Just Because They Can Doesn’t Mean They Should: Choosing Age-Appropriate Books for Literature Circles

Kids might be missing out on great books that are a better fit if they are reading books just because they can. Shari Frost delivers a smart reminder about challenging advanced readers.

The Sisters Redesign a New Teacher’s Storage Area

The Sisters help a new teacher, Amy, sort through junk she inherited from previous occupants of her classroom. The video uses time-lapse videography to show how the coat, storage, and book area is transformed in the process of winnowing down these materials.

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.

What Are the Seven Reading Comprehension Strategies?

Terms like thinking or comprehension strategies get thrown around a lot, but what do we really mean? Brenda Power helps define seven strategies to build common language and understanding.

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