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The Sponge Summary Lesson Part 5

In this sequence of videos, Heather teaches a 4th grade class, using the analogy of a sponge to explain how summaries work. In this fifth video, Heather and students shift from “I do” to “we do” as students try test their summary writing skills with partners

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.

Tried and True Trumps Shiny and New

Amanda Adrian explains why running records are still an essential tool in any teacher’s assessment arsenal.  She also includes links to web resources for honing your running record skills if they are a bit rusty.

Literacy Coaching and Student Work with Diane Sweeney (PODCAST)

Diane Sweeney talks about the importance of focusing more on student work and less on teacher plans and lessons for literacy coaches.

I Can’t Quite Put My Finger On It

Have you ever had a teacher enthusiastically embrace a new “magic bullet” instructional program that includes scripted or rote elements that concern you? Melanie Quinn considers this sticky situation instructional coaches sometimes find themselves in, and comes up with some starting points for conversations with colleagues.

Professional Development Openers and Icebreakers (ROUND-UP)

This round-up includes suggestions for opening activities and icebreakers to energize your colleagues from Amanda Adrian, Aimee Buckner, Shari Frost, and Jennifer Jones.

Listen In: Writing in Math

Heather Rader confers with 2nd grader Maya about her math writing as Linda Karamatic listens in.

Common Core Conversations: Using Evidence From Text

Amanda Adrian and Heather Rader explain how the standard for finding evidence in texts might change instruction.

Supporting New Teachers and Appreciating Their Gifts

Melanie Quinn thinks through the two common "phases" of early career teachers, and creates a checklist of guidance they will need from literacy leaders.

Planning for a Demonstration Lesson Part 1

In this first installment of a video series, Clare Landrigan takes a team of grades 3-5 teachers through the steps of planning for a demonstration lesson.

Planning for a Demonstration Lesson Part 2

In this second installment of a two-part video series, Clare Landrigan takes a team of grades 3-5 teachers through the steps of selecting a book for a demonstration lesson.

Building Community Protocols

Clare Landrigan and Tammy Mulligan share two of their favorite protocols for building community among educators.

On Their Own (Almost): Coaching and Classroom Demonstrations Mid-Year

In this video filmed in mid-January, Jennifer Allen observes new teacher Jessica, and explains how she struggles to redefine her role in the classroom.

Teaching and Assessing Persuasive Writing Skills

Heather Rader explores different ways into persuasive writing with teachers and students, highlighting the importance of helping students learn to cite and quote expert resources

Listen In: Magnifying a Moment in Writing

Sometimes using a prop can help young students understand a revision strategy.  Heather Rader helps second-grader Sammi understand how to “magnify” a moment when revising her writing.

Evocative Coaching in Action (PODCAST)

In this podcast, Bob Tschannen-Moran uses the strategy of imaginative listening to process an unsettling interaction Heather Rader had with a colleague.

Voila! Best Writing and Entry Slips in Second Grade

The word voila in French literally means “see there.” Linda Karamatic puts time and reflection into creating a binder, or “voila book,” that will ease the bulging writing workshop folders and preserve the best of her second-grade students’ writing.

The Sponge Summary Lesson Part 1

In this sequence of videos, Heather teaches a fourth-grade class, using the analogy of a sponge to explain how summaries work. In this first video excerpt, Heather reviews the work the class has already done on understanding the attributes of good summaries.

The Sponge Summary Lesson Part 4

In this sequence of videos, Heather Rader teaches a 4th grade class, using the analogy of a sponge to explain how summaries work. In this fourth video, Heather and students discuss their summaries in progress

Common Core Conversations: Vocabulary

Amanda Adrian and Heather Rader explore connections between the Common Core and vocabulary instruction.

Best Practices in Spelling Instruction

Heather Rader wades through the research to find the best practices in spelling instruction.

How Do We Structure Small Groups? (Part 3 of the Grouping Series)

Heather Rader synthesizes recommendations and provides examples of how grouping structures work in classrooms.

Listen In: Spelling Aids in the Writing Workshop

Many commercial aids are available to assist young writers. The challenge is choosing carefully, and integrating them into workshops in a way that doesn’t inhibit student fluency and risk-taking. In this video, Heather Rader confers with a second grader, demonstrating how to use a spelling log for high-frequency words.

Common Core Standards: Spreading the Word

Literacy leaders working in large districts face special challenges when implementing new programs. Suki Jones-Mozenter writes about the strategies being developed in one of the largest districts in the country.

Mentor Texts for Nonfiction Writing

Beth Lawson and Heather Rader meet to plan and share mentor texts for nonfiction writing in Beth’s fourth-grade classroom.

The Affect of Tech on Splrs

Heather Rader considers the cultural divide between teachers and students who are “screenagers” when it comes to texting.  If u r getting LOLed out in ur classroom u might want 2 read this.

How Do We Know Small-Group Instruction is Effective?

Heather Rader considers how to assess the effectiveness of groups.

Can I Quote You on That?: Capturing Classroom Conversation

Here's a fun notetaking strategy to try. Ellie Gilbert records snippets of conversation from Katie Doherty's students, and then uses them in a debrief session to discuss student strengths, needs, and next steps.

Communicating with the Y Chromosome

Heather Rader finds herself coaching a male teacher who is part of a male teaching team, and gets a lesson herself in gender communication patterns.

Katherine Casey on Sharing Blunders with Colleagues (PODCAST)

Katherine Casey explains why she shares her teaching blunders (on video, no less) with colleagues, and what she has learned from the process.

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