The goal for any reading curriculum is to develop readers who are able to understand, evaluate, and respond to texts in thoughtful ways. We can lump these competencies under the concept of reading comprehension. There is also a second goal for reading: to develop children and adults who are lifelong avid readers who choose to make literacy an integral part of their lives.
In my work as a consultant to schools, I’ve met many teachers who are concerned about the number of words their students know, as well as the limited knowledge of how words work, which students display. When we begin to discuss these issues, the teachers often share with me that they don’t have resources to address these deficiencies and that they are concerned about how to integrate meaningful vocabulary instruction into their lessons.
In response to these concerns that I’ve heard so many times, I began crafting short lessons intended to teach a few target words, building on a similarity (like a shared root) that the words have. Each mini-lesson contains four components, represented by the acronym SNAP. Read more
Sometimes it’s called the “treasure box”; other times, it’s known as “that resource.” Once I heard it referred to as “the answer”—not an answer, mind you, but the answer. It’s that magical list of complex texts that are just right for your students; they’re the readily available, rigorous tasks sure to engage them deeply. Answers. Easy ones. Good ones.
Forgive then, my terrible, terrible news: that treasure doesn’t exist. Read more
(Note: This post is co-authored by Kristine E. Pytash and Richard E. Ferdig, and guest authors John Dunlosky and Karl W. Kosko of Kent State University.)
Whether children are reading electronic storybooks, creating interactive videos and multimedia stories, or reading and responding to standardized tests in digital formats, technology is influencing what it looks like to read and write and how teachers and parents are using new digital tools to transform reading and writing instruction. As researchers and teachers, we are interested in these various ways technology and digital media support reading and writing instruction. Recently, we’ve been studying eWriters and how these tools might influence children’s writing acquisition and composition process. Read more
Most states have improved graduation rates over time, but as one superintendent told this author, “We know how to increase graduation rates; we just don’t know how to educate them before they graduate!” So, what can educators do to increase the number of graduates who are actually ready for college or careers? Read more