Choice Literacy Articles & Videos
The Choice Literacy library contains over 3,000 articles and 900 videos from 150+ contributors. Classic Classroom and Literacy Leadership subscribers have access to the entire library. Content is updated continuously, with 5 – 6 new features published each week.
A heavy sigh from a student is a cue to Shari Frost that he has heard the same Martin Luther King picture book biography one too many times in February. She shares her top picture book picks for expanding children’s awareness of black history all year long.
Mark Levine finds Russell Freedman book clubs are a great way for his middle school students to deepen understanding of history and empathize with young people who lived through previous eras.
Christy Rush-Levine confers with Omar, who is reading The Rock and the River. The book is a fictional account of a tumultuous time in civil rights history, considering protests through a child’s eyes.
Stella Villalba shares some of her favorite new picture book bIographies for bringing history to life for young learners, with a focus on perseverance.
We consider the connections between personal history and literacy in this week’s Big Fresh.
Estelle shares a poem she has written about lost friendship with her teacher, Katherine Sokolowski. She captures the fickle nature of fifth-grade relationships among girls. Katherine connects the cadence of the writing to the style of The Crossover, and helps Estelle find possibilities for more writing.
Suzy Kaback is startled to see a picture of her deceased father on the wall when she visits her daughter’s seventh-grade classroom. It’s the start of learning about the power of ohana in schools.
Ruth Ayres wonders if the pencil still has power, taking readers through a whirlwind history of the writing tool in her life, schools, and the world.
We consider literacy foundations in this week’s Big Fresh.
Shirl McPhillips crafts a message from the moon about tone in poetry and school in her latest poem and companion essay.
Jen Schwanke gets berated by a tire shop repair guy for ignoring routine maintenance needs on her bike. That gets her thinking about what needs routine maintenance in elementary classrooms.
Bitsy Parks teaches the foundations of first-grade classroom life through minilessons early in the year.
Gigi McAllister helps fourth-grade reading partners evaluate their success and areas to work on in their partnership.
Ruth Ayres explains why we can’t assume children who have experienced trauma understand the foundations and routines of how school works
Christy Rush-Levine integrates reading responses into her preparation for reading conferences, and then uses the responses as a tool to build goals and insights within the conference.
Christy Ruth-Levine confers with Edith, who is tracking character changes in the novel Room.
Franki Sibberson finds teaching students to annotate while reading is one of the best ways to promote ongoing reflective response in her fifth-grade classroom. She shares how she starts teaching annotation skills early in the year.
“I read 35 pages!” An elated student deflates Bitsy Parks in her first-grade classroom. By mid-fall she is alarmed at the responses of students to their reading in the whole-group share — they are all about quantity, with no thinking or reflection. She uses modeling and careful questioning to foster more thoughtful reader response.
Katrina Edwards confers with a first grader, looking beyond the level of the book early in the year to ensure the child is engaging with the story. She helps the child notice changes in the simple text and illustrations.
Shari Frost helps a teacher who has guided reading groups that have run amok, and discovers the real culprit is a lack of time for reading and writing in the literacy block.
Matt Renwick encourages you to ask a few critical questions before you adopt the 40-Book Challenge or any other activity with a number for a goal you’re going to be tied to all year long in your classroom.
“How do you know what level they have selected?” a visitor asks Bitsy Parks as she observes during a first-grade independent reading period. “I don’t,” Bitsy responds, and explains why it is a beautiful thing.
We look at first lessons and introductions to students in this week’s Big Fresh.
Bitsy Parks selects read alouds for the first weeks of school for many different purposes, from building community to helping her first graders navigate the classroom library.
Mark Levine explains why he dives right into work in his middle school classroom, rather than getting-to-know-you activities. And through the work, a community is born.
Tara Smith covers all the basics of how to get organized in middle school for the first days of literacy workshops.
Bitsy Parks uses reading share time early in the year to describe and summarize the work in two conferences to help students learn how conferring, independent reading time, and strategy practice work. One of the books used in a conference is from a recent read aloud.
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