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Mentor Reader: Words

Gigi McAllister writes about a quick activity for modeling word learning and fostering discussion of new vocabulary.

Owl Research Word Study

Andrea Smith leads a whole-class discussion of recording new content vocabulary in reading notebooks.

Word Observations

Max Brand describes how word observations can work as powerful minilessons in elementary classrooms.

Simplifying Word Study

Max Brand has suggestions for simplifying word study.

Katie DiCesare on Word Learning (PODCAST)

Katie DiCesare chats with Franki Sibberson about word learning in Katie’s first-grade classroom.

Conferring About Lemony Snicket and Vocabulary

Aimee Buckner confers with fourth grader Samantha about reading a series and tackling challenging vocabulary at the same time in this brief video.

So You Think You Can Combine Sentences? You Can!

Heather Rader concludes her series on sentence combining with a four-step process to help teachers explore the sentence combining craft on their own.

Sentence Combining in Workshops

Heather Rader has strategies for using sentence combining in literacy workshops.

A Tool Worth Exploring: Sentence Combining

Heather Rader begins a new series on sentence combining, an alternative to traditional drill and kill grammar instruction.

Explanatory Grammar Moves: Getting Verbal with It

Jeff Anderson concludes his series on explanatory grammar moves by exploring participles, included in the Common Core eighth-grade standard covering the use of verbals.

Formative Spelling Assessment

Max Brand has developed templates for grades K-2 and 3-5 to use for formative spelling assessments.

Words Chart Minilesson

Ruth Ayres develops a words chart in this brief minilesson with second graders.

Explanatory Grammar Moves: Right-Branching Sentences

Jeff Anderson continues his Explanatory Grammar Series with a feature on the power of right-branching sentences.

Spelling Cycles: An Alternative to Weekly Spelling Lists

Max Brand developed Spelling Cycles as an alternative to weekly spelling tests. He explains how they work with an example from a third-grade class.

Word Nerds

What words are worthy of study? Amanda Adrian and Heather Rader explore that question with colleagues.

Adding to a Word Wall in Kindergarten

Mandy Robek introduces a new word to her kindergartners for their word wall.

Teaching Syllable Breaks in Kindergarten

In kindergarten, table groups are a natural and informal way to help groups of students learn new skills through eavesdropping. In this short video from Mandy Robek's kindergarten class, Mandy targets the same skill of defining syllables during individual conferences at the table so that the learning is reinforced for all.

Grouping Struggling Students for Word Study: A Case Study

Shari Frost considers the “go-to” instructional strategy for struggling readers, word study, and explores how to make it work well in a case study of a third-grade group.

Cooking Up Interest in Words with Fifth Graders

Maria Caplin continues her series on sparking vocabulary learning, this time highlighting fun activities.

Weaving Word Study into Writing Workshop in 5th Grade

Maria Caplin describes how she integrates word study with intermediate students in writing workshops.

Highlighting Language in a Writing Conference

Karen Terlecky confers with fifth grader Nora about her evocative language during writing workshop.

Integrating Vocabulary and Retelling Strategies into Read-Aloud

Stella Villalba scaffolds the language development of her first- and second-grade English language learners during read-aloud by highlighting vocabulary and providing a tool to assist with a partner retelling activity.

Vocabulary and iPhones: A Four-Step Process for Independent Student Word Learning

Bryce Bennett develops a four-step process to help high school students use their smartphones to master difficult vocabulary while reading.

Student-Selected Vocabulary in Middle School

Katie Doherty shares many ways to make vocabulary learning fun in middle school, beginning with students working together to select words to study each week.

Using Wipe-Off Boards with Young English Language Learners

Max Brand describes why wipe-off boards are such a valuable tool for work with young English language learners in small groups. The article includes a video demonstration.

Book Matchmaker: Nonfiction to Read Cover to Cover

With the Common Core emphasis on nonfiction, teachers are striving to integrate more nonfiction texts throughout their literacy workshops. Franki Sibberson shares her favorite nonfiction texts that can be read cover to cover.

Finding a Fit (The Power of Conventions Series)

Heather Rader works with a teaching team as they integrate conventions instruction into their writing workshop.

Shifting from Spelling to Word Study in 5th Grade

Maria Caplin explains how she made the shift from spelling to word study in the intermediate grades.

What’s Up with Those Word Walls?

Shari Frost visits classrooms early in the year and finds many have completely full word walls. In this essay, she shares research as well as practical reasons why it’s best to build the walls over time with students.

Getting Started with Sentence Observations

Karen Terlecky details the assessments and preparation that goes into the design of her sentence observation program.

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