Tara Barnett and Kate Mills

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Tara Barnett and Kate Mills are teachers in New Jersey. Their favorite years in the classroom have been the ones they co-taught together, when they experienced the powerful effects of professional collaboration for both the teachers and the students in the classroom. They blog together at Tara and Kate.

Most Recent Content
It’s All in the Details

Tara Barnett and Kate Mills find their middle school students need some scaffolding to tease out essential details in literature.

When There’s No Time for Debriefing

A debrief in the midst of a coaching cycle can seem like one more meeting there isn’t time for in the school day. Tara Barnett and Kate Mills share a virtual debrief option they have developed to use at times when it isn’t possible to meet.

Teaching Theme Before the Holidays

Tara Barnett and Kate Mills take advantage of students’ knowledge of Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer to teach the concept of theme before the holiday break.

Building Reading Identities Across the Year

The start of the school year is often all about building reader identities in classrooms. And then October comes, and many of the activities that help students celebrate their reading histories and preferences are forgotten. Tara Barnett and Kate Mills share ways teachers can continue to help students define, refine, and expand their reading identities all year long.

Charting Mentor Texts

Tara Barnett and Kate Mills share many of their favorite anchor charts for helping students connect writer’s craft to mentor texts.

Unleveling Classroom Libraries

Moving a classroom library from levels to themes and authors is challenging and rewarding. Tara Barnett and Kate Mills share how they take teachers step by step through the process of reorganizing their classroom libraries.

Linking Literacy and Community at the Start of the Year

Tara Barnett and Kate Mills start with the poem “Where I’m From” to build community through literacy at the start of the year.

Growing Talk About Reading

Tara Barnett and Kate Mills find that struggling readers in the early grades benefit from scaffolds and repeated practice in small groups. They share some of their favorite tools, including key ring prompts and anchor charts.


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