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Nonfiction Book Blitz

Justin Stygles finds a nonfiction book blitz is the perfect unit for closing out the school year.

Mental Images: Connecting Reading and Sketching

Sean Moore confers with second grader Teague, masterfully demonstrating how to move between instruction and celebration when conferring with a child who struggles with reading.

Conferring About Word Learning

Sean Moore teaches second grader Mikhail some strategies for learning words in a conference.

Bridge to Comprehension Minilesson

Deb Gaby uses a bridge metaphor in a comprehension minilesson for second graders.

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.

More Sophisticated Mysteries: Conferring with Yuki

Franki Sibberson confers with fourth grader Yuki to expand his reading options into more complex series and mysteries.

The Power of Mystery Series for Teens and Tweens

Ruth Shagoury shares her top picks of mystery series for teens and tweens.

Making Classics Relevant for Middle School Students

Jennifer Schwanke helps middle school students make connections between classics and their current reading.

Conferring with Sebastian

Katie DiCesare chats with first grader Sebastian in this one-minute conference, then shares her reflections on where Sebastian might go next in his reading.

Rereading and Retelling to Inferring: Part 2

Linda Karamatic uses texts her second graders already know to build their inferring skills as they construct a chart together.

Exploring Inferring with Second Graders: Part 1

Linda Karamatic uses a read aloud to launch a group activity to build understanding of  inferring.

The Shape of Stories

Mary Lee Hahn explores story structure with her fifth-grade students. This is a terrific activity for helping older students understand increasingly complex story structures as they move through the intermediate grades.

Act III: Exploring Subtext with A Midsummer Night’s Dream (Shakespeare and the Common Core Series)

Gretchen Schroeder concludes her Shakespeare in the Age of the Common Core Series with activities to explore subtext in A Midsummer Night’s Dream.

Act II: Understanding Hamlet Through Close Reading (Shakespeare and the Common Core Series)

Gretchen Schroeder continues her Shakespeare and the Common Core series on teaching the classics in high school, explaining how she uses Hamlet in creative ways to teach close reading strategies.

Tracking Characters: A Conferring Tip

Aimee Buckner teaches a fourth grader a strategy for using a sticky note to keep track of characters when there are multiple narrators in a novel.

Act I: Delving into Deep Questions with Macbeth (Shakespeare and the Common Core Series)

Gretchen Schroeder launches a three-part series on Shakespeare in the Age of the Common Core. This week’s installment is a fresh take on teaching Macbeth to high school students.

Mock Newbery Club

Katherine Sokolowski has suggestions for organizing and hosting a Mock Newbery Club in the weeks before the award is given in late January.

Partner Reading Conference in First Grade

Katie DiCesare confers with Jack and Praneel about their partner reading.

Research Book Clubs for Struggling Readers

Beth Lawson finds that a nonfiction research book club is just the grouping structure needed for a group of struggling readers in her fourth-grade classroom.

Holding Thinking Minilesson with Second Graders

Deb Gaby uses an analogy of animal tracks to introduce the concept of "holding thinking" in reading journals to second graders.

October Literacy Contracts: Fear and Conflict

Megan Ginther and Holly Mueller continue their monthly series on using literacy contracts in middle school. The October literacy contracts have a theme of fear and conflict.

Abandoning Books Discussion

Franki Sibberson works with a small group of fourth graders who often abandon books.

Chris Lehman and Kate Roberts on Close Reading (PODCAST)

Franki Sibberson chats with Chris Lehman and Kate Roberts about close reading in this 30-minute podcast. Chris and Kate are the authors of Falling in Love with Close Reading: Lessons for Analyzing Texts — and Life from Heinemann.

Emphasizing Empathy: September Literacy Contracts

Megan Ginther and Holly Mueller are Emphasizing Empathy in their September literacy contracts for middle school students.

How to Eat an Elephant One Bit(e) at a Time: Reading Complex Texts

Maggie Beattie Roberts and Kate Roberts present a step-by-step process for close reading in the middle and high school grades involving multiple passes through the same text.

Owl Research: Whole Class Explanation of Marking Up Text

Students are given a nonfiction text to mark up during a close reading with a partner in this video from Andrea Smith’s fourth-grade classroom.

Fireflies and Background Knowledge

Karen Terlecky writes about the importance of building understanding before more complex read alouds.

First Grade Read Aloud: Sergio Saves the Game

Katie DiCesare reads aloud Sergio Saves the Day to her first graders as part of a unit on understanding literary characters.

Decoding and Meaning: Conferring in 4th Grade

Tony Keefer confers with Amanda, a fourth grader who comprehends texts well, but struggles at times with fluency, decoding, and book selection.

Assessment to Grouping: Fifth-Grade Group on Character Traits

Karen Terlecky meets with two fifth graders who both share the same need identified on a recent formative assessment, inferring character traits.

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