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Critical Thinking and Captain Underpants

Christy Rush-Levine and some struggling eighth-grade readers consider misogyny in a popular children’s book.

Beyond the Comfort Zone: Books for Our Times

Christy Rush-Levine explains why she stocks some books in her middle school classroom library that can provoke concerns from families, and how she deals with conflicts.

First Shared Text: Fishing for Many Meanings with Adolescents

Christy Rush-Levine introduces her middle school students to the complexity of reading on the first day of school.

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Fact or Fiction? Introducing the Task


Christy Rush-Levine has her middle school students complete a fun and sophisticated reading activity using Muse magazine to sort through what might be fact or fiction. The piece includes a video excerpt from the group discussion.

A Formula for Great Book Talks

Christy Rush-Levine explains her formula for successful book talks in middle school that grab students' attention. We've also included a sample book talk.

Reflective Transitions

Christy Rush-Levine helps her eighth-grade students launch the work period with a reflective question that sets a tone for productivity, and then returns to it throughout the morning during transition times.

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