Education

Creating A R.I.C.H. Literacy Environment

Most students either really love to read and find joy in growing and sharpening their literacy skills, or they feel the opposite. Their experience depends on two things- the instructional decisions made and the environment in which they learn.  Educators are often told to create a “literacy rich” or “print rich” classroom setting, but what …

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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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Finding the Hook

It’s all about the hook. Find what is inspiring to the youth and you find the hook into reading. Take baby steps even if needed. Not interested in reading a book? Start with a graphic novel. Even the old school Baby Sitters Club books are coming back with a vengeance in graphic novel form! Boys! …

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Meet the School Librarian

August and September traditionally serve as the months for Meet the Teacher nights. Families file into school buildings to check out classrooms, admire bulletin boards, and inquire about policies and procedures. I am suggesting that parents make a detour on their way to classrooms this school year. Visit the school library. Yes, it’s true. School …

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Autonomy in K-3 Literacy Learning

Something that I’ve learned in my time as an educator is the power in providing students with choice. Choice to explore their learning, choice to figure things out on their own, choice to learn new things in a variety of ways. Literacy skills are the foundation of learning, and something that educators should get excited …

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10 Ways to Explode Your Students’ Excitement for Reading!

How do you get kids excited about books? Over my 25 years of teaching, I’ve discovered many ways to spark excitement. Here are 10 to get you started: Start an After-School Book Club Invite a guest reader from the community to kick off the meetings. After the read-aloud, the kids spread out to read independently …

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12 Simple Tips for Helping Your Child Become a Better Reader

Check out these 12 simple tips from Dr. Andrew Johnson to help your child become a better reader! Read to your child Expose your child to words Use pretend reading Expose to rhymes, rhyming books, nursery rhymes, poetry, music Reread the same book Read bedtime stories

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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