Do you guide teachers, specialists, and literacy coaches? Here are tools, advice, and strategies school leaders need for their daily work in staff meetings, study groups, and one-on-one discussions with colleagues. If you have a leadership role in coaching teachers and designing professional development, you'll want an upgraded membership with access to our Leaders Lounge.
If you're a literacy coach, the most important question to ask yourself may be this: How much time am I spending in classrooms? Shari Frost writes about how coaches can move beyond a quest for perfect demo lessons to a stance of co-learners with teachers.
What books are most likely to succeed in teacher study groups? Shari Frost shares her criteria for books teachers will embrace. . .and actually read with enthusiasm.
Heather Rader gets the inside word from novice literacy coaches about the support they need to thrive.
Clare Landrigan and Tammy Mulligan have advice for teachers and literacy coaches leading demonstration lessons.
Jennifer Allen has developed some innovative support systems for veteran teachers. She shares her insights in this podcast.
The draft stamp is a simple tool for tracking and accountability, no matter the age of the learner.
What are the hallmarks of professional learning communities that work well in schools?
The joy and challenge of literacy coaching is creating a good structure for the day. Heather Rader has suggestions for short- and long-term planning on the coaching calendar.
Jennifer Allen shares a few strategies for building the reading community beyond individual classrooms in your school. Book swaps, a shared staff novel, and family literacy breakfasts all reinforce the most important aspect of reading – it should be pleasurable and engrossing, no matter the age of the learner.
Are you a minimalist when it comes to email, or do you tend to send rambling and reflective posts? No matter your email style, it likely is a match for some of your colleagues, and a barrier to communication for others.
Tammy Mulligan and Clare Ladrigan give advice on creating schedules for literacy coaches that integrate district goals and teacher interests.
Jennifer Allen considers how her study groups have changed over the past decade as she continues to balance district demands with teacher choice.
If you are familiar with Wordle, you already know it is a great free tool on the web for creating “word clouds” – visual representations of language. Heather Rader uses Wordle in her literacy coaching to give new and veteran teachers a succinct and powerful visual representation of their teaching language.
Jennifer Jones finds in a time of budget cuts it is more important than ever for literacy coaches to keep good records of how they spend their time with teachers. She shares a very simple spreadsheet system which includes content codes and brief notes.
Jill Ostrow creates a flexible and practical online tool to support teachers of English language learners.
What role should literacy coaches have in helping teachers manage unruly students? Melanie Quinn settles into a morning of poring over assessment data, only to have it interrupted by a child who has been disrupting his class. Her interactions with Darren and his teacher lead to strategies for helping colleagues take an inquiry stance with challenging children.
Jennifer Allen finds she only learns what new teachers really need when she builds a relationship and rapport with them.
Jennifer Allen details her professional development formats, and the crucial role feedback plays in their success.
Kathy Collins looks around the holiday table, and discovers differentiating instruction is similar to hosting a Thanksgiving feast.
Jennifer Allen reflects on her experiences as a teacher, and develops ways to help the veteran teachers she works with return to their “creation chambers.”
Laughter or struggles – the experiences we share are the ones that bind us together. Jennifer Allen mulls over how to foster more of those shared experiences for the colleagues she coaches.
Teachers, are you getting the most out of your relationships with the literacy coaches and other mentors in your midst? Heather Rader has some thoughtful back-to-school advice for building more powerful teacher-coach relationships
"Peppers make cats cry." If you want to understand the wise advice for literacy coaches within this mnemonic device, you'll have to read this article.
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.
No data point for any child stands alone. Clare Landrigan and Tammy Mulligan write about the importance of triangulating data when looking at student assessments, and in the process affirm the value of classroom observations.
Julie Johnson shares the professional development plan and experiences that led to her school's evolution into a model writing school.
Julie Johnson documents the continuing evolution of her learning community as a model writing school.
We know the power of mental images as a strategy for helping readers comprehend difficult text. Suzy Kaback uses a similar technique to help novice teachers envision success. Thisl is an activity you might want to try with a new teacher group.
Is your system for sharing books from a school bookroom or literacy closet working well? Shari Frost provides 10 practical tips for getting the best use out of shared literacy resources.
Sometimes the pendulum swings so hard in education that it’s hard not to feel whiplash. Shari Frost considers critiques of strategy instruction, analyzing what’s valid and what’s not in attacks on the flurry of post-its in classrooms.
Get full access to all Choice Literacy article content
Get full access to all Choice Literacy video content
Receive member-only discounts on books, DVDs and more