Writing

Writing is Reading in Reverse

Elementary teachers, reading specialists and literacy coaches all know that to be a good writer, children must also be good readers. They need to understand a plot, the characters, and sequencing and understand the vocabulary that moves a plot forward, explain the actions and motives of a character, and comprehend the changes that take place …

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PenPals: Handwritten Letters to Support the Whole Child

When was the last time you wrote or received a handwritten letter? For thousands of years, handwritten letters have played a critical part in our lives. In this age of digital communication, handwritten letters are becoming a lost art. Emails and text messages can be sent instantly; however, the impact of a good old-fashioned handwritten …

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Let\’s Leverage The Fun To Connect Listening, Speaking, Reading, and Writing!

The young students frantically waved their hands high in the air. They couldn’t wait to run to the front of the gym and participate in a game I call, “5 in Ten!”. I recently spoke with hundreds of students in different settings (urban, rural, and suburban) and they all enjoyed “5 in 10’!”. The gist …

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Guided Journaling for Self-Awareness

Journaling is a common way to encourage young learners to express themselves while also supporting the academic skills of reading and writing. As a reflective tool, journaling is popular among therapists as the therapeutic benefits of journaling are well-established. It’s not surprising that journaling can also be an effective way to help children enhance self-awareness, …

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Literacy + STEM = A Perfect Pairing

When it comes to STEM and literacy, one can’t exist without the other. STEM teachers emphasize the Engineering Design Process and computational thinking, as well as technology tools. But the work of engineers and scientists goes much further than the traditional STEM subjects of science, technology, engineering, and math. They are also communicators, collaborators, writers, …

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Raised hands

Promoting Classroom Conversation

Every single day we are tasked with ensuring that our students are entering into our building safely, that they are to learn wholeheartedly, and that they get to experience a wide variety of knowledge along the way. In doing this, as educators one of the pivotal roles we play is to promote classroom conversations. These …

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Young boy sitting atop a stack of books

Poetry: My Story

In 1994, my 6-year-old son Nicholas failed first grade. Testing revealed he could read ten words, showed no strengths, and had a low IQ. The prognosis was dire, his future bleak. Finally, the diagnostician called him: “The worst child I’ve seen in twenty years of teaching.” I had the option to remove my son from …

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Raised hands of multiple bright colors

Include Me!

All children like to read things they can relate to or that make them feel good. And the best children’s stories I “read” were those on the laps of my parents. In order to write books for children of a different mold than our own, we need to know them. I grew up in a …

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Fairytale; social emotional learning

Reading Supports Social Emotional Learning

How reading helps children learn social emotional skills I am a lover of all things book and the written word. As a child, I was precocious and very curious. Thankfully, my father had a great passion for reading and ensured that I, along with my siblings, understood the importance of literacy and that it was …

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