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Today's Reading News

Each weekday, Reading Rockets gathers interesting news headlines about reading and early education. Please note that Reading Rockets does not necessarily endorse these views or any others on these outside websites.

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Education Week
October 1, 2014

Long a cause for alarm, the gap in reading skills between poor students and their more affluent peers is well-established and worsening. Now, there's more bad news: Educators and researchers may be underestimating the real magnitude of the reading achievement gap because they have not adequately accounted for the different skills that are required to successfully read online, as opposed to in print. In a new study, researcher Donald Leu of the University of Connecticut, in Storrs, and his team found "a large and significant achievement gap, based on income inequality, in an important new area for learning — the ability to read on the Internet to learn information," according to a release from the university. Titled "The New Literacies of Online Research and Comprehension: Rethinking the Reading Achievement Gap," the complete study looked at 7th graders from two Connecticut school districts. It is set to published January in the academic journal Reading Research Quarterly. Leu's findings, while limited to a small sample that did not include students whose families are at or below the poverty line, are significant, both statistically and from a policy perspective.

Ed Central
October 1, 2014

As the number of DLLs continues to grow, educators and other stakeholders are increasingly open to reworking how our public education system serves them. Minnesota’s Learning for English Academic Proficiency and Success Act (LEAPS Act) became law earlier this year without attracting much attention. But it could make a big difference — a big improvement — in how Minnesota’s schools serve DLLs. For instance, it requires districts to track DLLs’ home language skills in addition to their progress towards proficiency in English. This matches what we know from the research on DLLs’ linguistic development. These students’ home languages are a strength that helps them add English more quickly and completely.

The State News (East Lansing, MI)
October 1, 2014

One member of her staff refers to her as the “Mother Theresa of Literacy.” But Lois Bader claims she’s just doing what she loves. Bader is the executive director of the Capital Area Literacy Coalition and its Read to Succeed program, which is celebrating 30 years of helping Lansing area students develop literacy skills after the school day ends. Every year, the Read to Succeed program recruits MSU students and gives them professional training to later take a child one on one for a semester to develop a struggling student’s literacy skills. College students can tutor as a volunteer opportunity or for class credit, and the program is free of cost to the students being tutored. According to Bader, who started the Read to Succeed program in 1985, many of Lansing’s public elementary schools rank below the 10th percentile in regards to student reading comprehension. Bader said that puts them behind not just in reading, but in all other subjects, too.

The Voice (New Baltimore, MI)
October 1, 2014

Dorcas Dunker, director of the Michigan Dyslexia Institute understands that dyslexics learn best through hands-on experience, demonstrations, experimentation, observation and visual aids. In conjunction with Dyslexia Awareness Month in October, the Friends of the St. Clair Library present “An Evening of Dyslexia Awareness”, presented by Dunker. The program will discuss symptoms and teaching methods that really work, she said. "Because many of those affected have above average IQ’s, dyslexia is an under-recognized disorder, affecting as many as one in five people," Dunker said. "Many children that appear bright but perform poorly in school are not lazy or careless. They are dyslexic and would benefit from specialized tutoring."

PBS NewsHour
September 30, 2014

In order to make sure students are reading at grade level, many states throughout the country have taken steps to provide extra reading time and instruction for underperforming students. But how much does simply adding extra time help? Patte Barth, the director of The Center for Public Education, joins Hari Sreenivasan to discuss the issue.

KQED Science
September 30, 2014

UC San Francisco (UCSF) researchers in the Dyslexia Program aim to predict whether children will develop dyslexia before they show signs of reading and speech problems, so early intervention can improve their quality of life. In a recent longitudinal study, Hoeft’s research team studied 38 young children using structural MRI to track their brain development between kindergarten and third grade as they formally learned to read in school. In particular, the researchers were interested in the children’s white matter development, which is critical for perceiving, thinking and learning. They found that volume changes in the left hemisphere white matter in the temporo-parietal region (just behind and above the left ear) was highly predictive of reading outcomes. This region is known to be important for language, reading and speech. Using MRI brain scans to measure these developmental changes improved the prediction accuracy of reading difficulties by 60%, compared to traditional assessments alone.

National Public Radio
September 30, 2014

The walls are lined with robots and movie posters for Star Wars and Back to the Future. But this is no 1980s nerd den. It's the technology lab at Westside Neighborhood School in Los Angeles, and the domain of its ed-tech coordinator, Don Fitz-Roy. This class is just one example of WNS' pretty radical technology policy — a policy that has second- and third-graders not just typing, but doing Internet research and computer programming. Here's the challenge: Much of it requires screen time. And, with so much talk these days of bad screen time, what is good screen time? It's a question that perplexes parents and educators alike.

School News Network (Grand Rapids, MI)
September 30, 2014

Tracey Davis-Replogle has big plans for miniature free libraries: scatter them throughout Wyoming to motivate everyone to grab a book and read for enjoyment. "I want to put Wyoming on the national map. I want (the ABC news program) "20/20" to show up on the doorstep and do a piece on this community that reads," she said. The 20-year Wyoming High School teacher and her husband, Kevin Replogle, built a Little Free Library, a wooden house-shaped box atop a treated 4x4, and stationed it outside the school's entrance to the Frontiers Program, for which Davis-Replogle serves as a language arts instructor and mentor. Inside the box are several books, available to students and community members for the taking. If they choose to, they can leave a book in return. "You open up the door, peruse what's there; if you'd like to leave one, that's fine. If not, grab and go," she said.

PBS NewsHour
September 29, 2014

The state of Florida recently mandated the 300 lowest-performing elementary schools add an extra hour of reading instruction each day, the first in the country to do so. But while supporters are convinced the extra time will improve kids' reading, not everyone is convinced it's the right solution.

KQED Mindshift
September 29, 2014

For decades, psychologists cautioned against raising children bilingual. They warned parents and teachers that learning a second language as a child was bad for brain development. But recent studies have found exactly the opposite. Researchers now believe that when people learn another language, they develop cognitive advantages that improve their attention, self-control and ability to deal with conflicting information. Today the benefits of bilingualism are being put to the test in schools all across Utah. Arrowhead Elementary is just one of the more than 100 public schools in the state that have launched language immersion programs in the past five years. At Arrowhead, that language is Mandarin. Other schools across Utah have created programs in French, Spanish, Portuguese, and German. Supporters of immersion education argue that learning a second language is valuable preparation to participate in the global economy. But parents are most excited about what language learning could do for their children’s brains.

The New York Times
September 29, 2014

Last summer was the second one Tayonna Taylor, an incoming second-grader, spent working with a reading tutor: her mother. Tayonna, who wears glasses and had the sniffles, sat with her mother, Tasia Carlton, in late July in Emily Roggie’s classroom in Wissahickon Charter School in northwest Philadelphia. Seven groups of parents and children sat together on too-small chairs. Three more children sat alone — their parents were with siblings in another classroom. There were a few dads, but mostly moms. Dress ranged from office wear to abaya and hijab, with many in blue T-shirts from Springboard Collaborative, which runs this program.

School Library Journal
September 29, 2014

The Horn Book editors Roger Sutton and Martha Parravano charmed an audience of librarians and early childhood educators during their reader’s advisory and what-to-look-for session at the “Fostering Lifelong Learners” conference. Armed with a depth of knowledge about selecting board books—and humor—The Horn Book editor-in-chief Sutton and executive editor Parravano framed their advice on what elements to look for in children’s books and their picks based on the worldview of preschoolers (birth to age 5) for their presentation entitled “Reviewing/Selecting Books for Children and Reader’s Advisory for Parents and Children.”

PBS NewsHour
September 26, 2014

Is there too much testing today in the public schools? It’s a question more parents, teachers and school officials are asking around the country. This is the first year scores on new tests tied to the Common Core standards will be published in many states. Some early adopters like New York State have already seen students’ scores dive on the new exams. Now more parents are opting their children out of tests and some officials are calling for a time-out when it comes to linking test results to consequences.

The Notebook (Philadelphia, PA)
September 26, 2014

The School District, along with the city and key businesses and nonprofit groups, has embarked on a campaign to have all 4th graders proficient in reading by 2020. Called READ by 4th, the effort is part of the national Campaign for Grade-Level Reading, which was launched by the Annie E. Casey Foundation and now includes more than 150 communities nationwide. In Philadelphia, the coalition includes more than 50 organizations, among them groups focused on childhood health, literacy, and education. The coalition has created a blueprint and embarked on several initiatives in the areas of boosting attendance, providing enriching and literacy-based summer activities, and improving access to high-quality early learning opportunities.

Rapid City Journal
September 26, 2014

Think of most any classroom, from primary to high school and through college and you’ll likely picture one thing: neat rows of desks facing the same direction. Maybe instead of desks there are tables, but the seating grid system likely persists. One Chadron Primary School classroom is shaking up the status quo by offering an array of seating options, and empowering students to choose where to sit day to day and sometimes assignment to assignment. Libby Uhing’s classroom has the feel of second grade, a white board, colorful decor, big bold words, and stacks of books. It also has two work tables with multiple chairs and several traditional student desks. But the room also boasts a recliner, ottoman, rocking chair, something like a chaise lounge, and ample open floor space.

National Public Radio
September 25, 2014

We've known for a long time that inequality and systemic educational barriers are holding back many young African-Americans. President Obama has led an initiative to help close the opportunity gap for young black men. But what about the girls? For young women of color, progress has been painfully slow, says a new report from the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund and the National Women's Law Center. The report argues that gender and racial stereotypes — combined with unequal distribution of school resources and overly punitive disciplinary practices, among other factors — have created a climate where African-American girls are more likely than any other group of girls to be suspended, expelled or held back entirely. The report shows that African-American girls are doing worse than the national average for girls on almost every measure of academic achievement.

The Notebook (Philadelphia, PA)
September 25, 2014

Progress continues on efforts to advocate for children with dyslexia. On June 26, the Dyslexia and Early Literacy Intervention Pilot Program was signed into law by Gov. Corbett. Through this pilot, the Pennsylvania Department of Education will be able to analyze how early screening and high-quality, evidence-based instruction can improve reading performance for all students and reduce special education referrals, particularly for dyslexic students. Early intervention for students with dyslexia or other reading difficulties is more effective and more cost-effective for districts because remediation generally takes four times as long if you wait until the upper elementary grades.

The Day (New London, CT)
September 25, 2014

Research shows that nationwide, children from low-income families hear 30 million fewer words than their more affluent peers by the time they are 3 years old. Research also shows that Connecticut continues to have the highest achievement gap in the country, and as a result these children are entering kindergarten already behind in reading skills and at the highest risk for reading failure. The good news is that evidence-based programs like Reach Out and Read make a real difference in promoting early literacy. The nonprofit program builds on the relationship between parents and medical providers to develop early reading skills, beginning at 6 months, so that children are better prepared to succeed with larger vocabularies and stronger language skills when they enter kindergarten.

The New York Times
September 24, 2014

Wealthier students tend to perform better on tests of reading comprehension than their poorer peers, a longstanding trend that has been documented amply. But with the Internet having become an indispensable part of daily life, a new study shows that a separate gap has emerged, with lower-income students again lagging more affluent students in their ability to find, evaluate, integrate and communicate the information they find online. The new research, led by Donald J. Leu at the University of Connecticut, is appearing this month in Reading Research Quarterly. Although the study is based on a small sample, it demonstrates a general lack of online literacy among all students, indicating that schools have not yet caught up to teach the skills needed to navigate digital information.

Yale News (New Haven, CT)
September 24, 2014

Yale experts on dyslexia took part in a hearing on Sept. 18 in Washington, D.C. to examine the latest scientific research on the condition, which affects one out of every five people in the United States. The hearing was sponsored by the Committee on Science, Space, and Technology. Dr. Sally Shaywitz, the Audrey G. Ratner Professor in Learning Development and co-director of the Yale Center for Dyslexia & Creativity (YCDC), represented YCDC in presenting the scientific findings from research conducted by herself; Dr. Bennett Shaywitz, the Charles and Helen Schwab Professor in Dyslexia and Learning Development; and their colleagues. Bennett and Sally Shaywitz and other experts discussed the cutting-edge scientific knowledge of dyslexia, future research directions, and treatments that help people with dyslexia overcome the challenges they face.

Ed Central
September 24, 2014

As the school year kicks off, youngsters in Georgia, Kentucky, Michigan, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and Vermont can look forward to a more comprehensive and coordinated early learning experience, birth through third grade. These states won last year’s Race to the Top- Early Learning Challenge grants (RTT-ELC) and are now implementing many aspects of their early learning plans. RTT-ELC focuses primarily on helping states to build systems to support children birth to five-years-old, but this new competitive priority also encourages states to connect and coordinate their birth-to-five systems with what’s happening in elementary schools.

Vancouver Sun (CA)
September 23, 2014

When it comes to raising readers and building strong literacy skills, opportunities are everywhere, especially for families with young children. “Research shows that experiences in infancy and early childhood make a big difference,” said Andrea Brown, the Vancouver Public Library’s assistant manager of early years programming. “It’s never too early to start reading and sharing literacy skills with your child.” Brown recommends five fun and simple activities that families can add to their daily routine.

School Library Journal
September 23, 2014

Dr. Robert Needlman, a pediatrician at the MetroHealth Medical Center in Cleveland and co-founder of Reach Out and Read, keynoted this year’s annual School Library Journal Fostering Lifelong Learners: Investing in Our Children conference at the Cuyahoga County (OH) Public Library on September 19. Needlman titled his address “Partnership with Pediatricians” and stated (in his PowerPoint slide) to the crowd of librarians seated before him that the “single most important activity for building the knowledge required to eventual success in reading is reading aloud to kids.”

Hechinger Report
September 23, 2014

The rigorous new Common Core standards represent both a daunting challenge and a promising pathway that could help close the achievement gap for the growing number of American students who enter school knowing little or no English. So concludes a new yearlong study released today by the California-based arm of Education Trust, a nonpartisan research and advocacy group that has repeatedly voiced concern that the new national standards might prove to be an additional burden for students whose native language is not English, particularly those who come from low-income families.

Seattle Times
September 22, 2014

On a recent afternoon, a 10-year-old girl with long, blond, curly hair, gave UW researchers a peek inside her brain. Lying flat on her back inside a machine that looks like a big doughnut, Shelter Gimbel-Sherr read individual letters presented on a video screen and then wrote the one that would come next in the alphabet on a special pad. All the while a scanner generated images of her neural tissue. University of Washington researchers Virginia Berninger, an educational psychologist, and radiologist Todd Richards, watched on a computer screen from a control room. They are at the forefront of brain research that’s illuminating what happens inside the brain as young children learn to speak, listen, read and write — and how to help those who struggle with those skills, like Shelter. That’s because our brains aren’t naturally wired for reading and writing (or multiplying and dividing). Infants aren’t born with the neural pathways needed for those skills.

Hechinger Report
September 22, 2014

Few programs have been studied as long or shown the lasting impact of Chicago’s Child-Parent Centers, which in 1967 became the nation’s first publicly funded education intervention serving preschool to third grade. The focus is on small class sizes, teacher training and a welcoming atmosphere that requires parent participation. Children can attend preschool for two years, beginning at age 3, in some cases for a full day. The Hechinger Report spoke with Arthur Reynolds, a professor at the University of Minnesota’s Institute of Child Development who has been following a class of 1,539 children from the Child-Parent Centers since 1986. He began as an evaluator and is now director of the ambitious Chicago Longitudinal Study, whose subjects are now in their mid-30s.

Vail Daily (CO)
September 22, 2014

The Reading Buddies Program, a collaboration between the Literacy Project of Eagle County and the Eagle Valley Library District, pairs teen volunteers with younger children (students in grades first through third grade) for an hour of one-on-one shared reading once per week for eight weeks. Big Buddies (teen mentors in grades nine through 12) receive training at the beginning and throughout the session. Teen mentors practice choosing appropriate books and materials, as well as, positive reinforcement techniques for helping a Little Buddy. Little Buddies are emerging readers, struggling readers and those who love to read. The program gives the Little Buddies extra reading practice with a caring, trained mentor in a fun and creative environment.

The Guardian (UK)
September 22, 2014

The Guardian children’s books site has won a World Young Reader prize from the World Association of Newspapers and News Publishers for its engagement with young people. The site, which is written by children and for children, features everything from reviews to author interviews, extracts and quizzes. Jeff Kinney, the author of the Wimpy Kid series, called the site’s content “fantastic”, adding that “a dedicated book site for kids, where they can also post their views and talk about their favourite books, is a wonderful thing”.

Wall Street Journal
September 19, 2014

Tyeast Fullerton sat close to her 3-year-old son, Tahji, on the floor of their small Brooklyn apartment on a recent afternoon, singing "Itsy Bitsy Spider," reading "Chicka Chicka Boom Boom'' and drawing trees with crayons. All that may sound simple, but for Ms. Fullerton, a single mother on public assistance, such playful engagement marked a leap from the days when she didn't know her son would learn faster if she talked with him a lot and stopped speaking "Baby-ese." "I didn't speak to him like an adult," she said. "I didn't think he would really get it." What changed her mind was a program that sent a literacy specialist to her home for 30 minutes, twice a week, for the past year to show her how to spur Tahji's language development. New research done at New York University found positive effects from this long-standing effort for 2- and 3-year-olds in poverty called the Parent-Child Home Program.

National Public Radio
September 19, 2014

More than 40 states have adopted the Common Core State Standards, new national academic benchmarks in reading and math. But the Common Core has become the center of a highly contentious debate nationwide. Proponents say the Common Core was designed to ensure that children, no matter where they go to school, are prepared to succeed in college or the workplace upon graduation. Opponents argue that many of the standards are not age or development-appropriate, and that they constrain the ability of teachers to adjust their teaching to their individual classrooms. In a recent Intelligence Squared U.S. debate, two teams of education experts squared off on the motion, "Embrace The Common Core." In these Oxford-style debates, the team that sways the most people to its side by the end is the winner.

Information Week
September 19, 2014

Speech synthesis, commonly known as text-to-speech (TTS), is the artificial production of human speech. Nowadays you can find a number of apps and programs that use a speech synthesizer to provide a text-to-speech service. Perhaps the most famous beneficiary of speech synthesis is the physicist and author Stephen Hawking, who communicates through a speech-generating device. A number of apps can turn text into speech, but a few have been specifically designed to assist children and adults with learning disabilities such as dyslexia or alexia. I spoke with Ben Baror, CEO of Root Applications, the Israeli company that developed Voxdox, a text-to-speech app designed to help children with learning disabilities.

Science World Report
September 19, 2014

Brain scans may now be able to help predict how early children can start learning to read. Recent findings published in the journal Psychological Science show that it may be possible to diagnose certain reading difficulties early, such as dyslexia. "We show that white matter development during a critical period in a child's life, when they start school and learn to read for the very first time, predicts how well the child ends up reading," said Fumiko Hoeft, MD, PhD, senior author and an associate professor of child and adolescent psychiatry at UCSF, and member of the UCSF Dyslexia Center.

School Library Journal
September 18, 2014

In 2012, a group launched a simple call to action: Read Aloud for 15 Minutes, with a decade-long commitment: partnering with other organizations and businesses that are invested in child development and education to make reading aloud every day for 15 minutes the new parenting standard and thereby change the face of education in this country. So my hope for everyone who is reading this column? I want you to get your library to partner with this organization and help spread this message. Read Aloud for 15 Minutes has three main campaign “pulses” during the year. March is “Read Aloud” month, July is “Seize the Summer,” and coming up in October? “Let’s Talk! Nourishment of the Brain for Babies.”

Auburn Citizen (NY)
September 18, 2014

The International Literacy Association recommendation is to increase reading time 60 seconds for 60 days. The Peachtown version is to partner-read for 10 minutes every morning before classes start, for 60 days. These partnerships are between the older and younger students, so a 6-foot-tall eighth-grader might read with a prekindergarten student. Promoting literacy, sharing and patience, and fostering a sense of community, are all accomplished with the reading of a book. Creating a culture of literacy is one of the most critical elements in successful schooling, and creating positive role models for young children is a giant step in the right direction.

Education Week
September 18, 2014

Charter schools have a reputation for enrolling students with disabilities at a far lower rate than traditional school districts. But some charter schools see these students as a potential growth market. My colleague Arianna Prothero, who covers charter schools, this week explored the world of charter schools created to support students with autism, learning disabilities, and other special needs. Such schools also raise questions about the inclusive environment that is promised to students with disabilities under federal law. The article explores what the role of such schools can be when students are supposed to be educated in the "least restrictive environment," and how they maintain their enrollment balance when charter schools are supposed to be open to the general student population.

School Library Journal
September 18, 2014

The Roosevelts: An Intimate History, Ken Burns’s seven-part documentary film about the lives of Theodore, Franklin, and Eleanor Roosevelt, recently premiered on PBS (visit the website for video excerpts, a photo gallery, and related lesson plans). Whether viewed in the classroom or at home, this fascinating look at three members of perhaps the most influential family in American politics is sure to generate interest among young readers. Ranging from picture-book accounts to more in-depth biographies, the books featured here will both inform and inspire.

Library Journal
September 17, 2014

The Pew Research Center Internet Project issued a new report September 10 on the library habits of Americans under 30. “Younger Americans and Public Libraries” examines the ways Millennials — those born between 1985 and 1998 — engage with libraries, and how they see libraries’ roles in their lives and communities. Millennials read about as much as older adults, with 43 percent saying that they read a book in some format (print, audiobook, or ebook) every day. As a group, they are also as likely as older adults to have used a library in the past 12 months, and more likely to have used a public library website. Nonetheless, the report warns, their levels of engagement vary in a number of ways.

National Public Radio
September 17, 2014

Nestled between Julia Auster's fantasy football app and Facebook Messenger is a relatively new bucket of apps: the education tools she uses in the French classes she teaches at Robert Adams Middle School in Holliston, Mass. Auster isn't alone. With more students bringing their own tech into the classroom, teachers are finding that apps aren't just fun — they're valuable tools to help manage student behaviors, to communicate with parents and to connect learning with social media. In short, they help inform how and what to teach. And the best part: Many of these apps are free. As the new school year gets underway, NPR checked in with school technologists and teachers to see what digital tools they're using.

WTSP News (Tampa, FL)
September 17, 2014

A state exam used to measure reading comprehension has been suspended, at least for the youngest of students,after mounting unrest with Florida's so-called "testing culture." According to the Tampa Bay Times, the state suspended the Florida Assessments for Instruction in Reading on Monday, also known as the FAIR test, for students in kindergarten through second grade. Instead, teachers will observe students through a less formal measurement than sitting for an online test. That's a victory for testing opponents, who say that students take too many tests — and that state exams play too large a role in educational decisions.

The New York Times
September 16, 2014

People disagree, quite strenuously, on the best curriculum for teaching children to read. But all participants in the reading wars agree on some other things: Early reading is crucial — a child who does not read proficiently by third grade will probably fall further and further behind each year. American schools are failing: two out of three fourth graders don’t read at grade level. And they agree on something else: any reading curriculum works better if children who are struggling get the chance to work, one on one, with a tutor. “If I were a principal, I’d spend my money on tutoring,” said Robin Jacob, an assistant research scientist at the University of Michigan’s School of Education.

Wall Street Journal
September 16, 2014

Once a week, members of a Wellington, New Zealand, book club arrive at a cafe, grab a drink and shut off their cellphones. Then they sink into cozy chairs and read in silence for an hour. The point of the club isn't to talk about literature, but to get away from pinging electronic devices and read, uninterrupted. The group calls itself the Slow Reading Club, and it is at the forefront of a movement populated by frazzled book lovers who miss old-school reading. Slow reading advocates seek a return to the focused reading habits of years gone by, before Google, smartphones and social media started fracturing our time and attention spans. Many of its advocates say they embraced the concept after realizing they couldn't make it through a book anymore.

Kansas City Star (MO)
September 16, 2014

Going back to school means making some adjustments. New classrooms. New classmates. New problems. Several new kids’ books feature young characters struggling with — and overcoming — obstacles from bullying and stage fright for younger readers to adoption and troubled parents for older readers. And for beginning readers who may just need a laugh, Kate DiCamillo introduces a new series featuring cowboy Leroy Ninker and his horse Maybelline. Here’s a look at some new titles, just in time for young people who may be facing challenges.

The New York Times
September 15, 2014

Technology companies are collecting a vast amount of data about students, touching every corner of their educational lives — with few controls on how those details are used. Now California is poised to become the first state to comprehensively restrict how such information is exploited by the growing education technology industry.

The Washington Post
September 15, 2014

Why are girls underrepresented in STEM classes and careers? What can be done about it?

School Library Journal
September 15, 2014

The long list for the National Book Award in the Young People’s Literature category was announced this morning. The list of 10 titles represent a range of genres: from fantasy, memoir and mystery, to nonfiction and science fiction.

KQED Mindshift
September 15, 2014

There’s no such thing as a “normal brain.” In fact, there’s a lot of diversity in how different brains process information — a challenge for educators tasked with teaching a diverse group of learners. Dyslexia is a common variation that affects how kids read, but what’s really going inside the brain of someone affected by it?

The Washington Post
September 15, 2014

Embrace the Common Core State Standards? Do not embrace the Common Core? That was the question in New York when four people — two for embracing and two against — participated in a recent debate about the controversial initiative.

PBS NewsHour
September 15, 2014

When Liz Woody’s son Mason was in third grade, he struggled to read basic words. After Woody moved Mason to a specialized school, she set out to transform techniques to reach struggling readers.

KQED Mindshift
September 12, 2014

Even for educators who are excited about using games in the classroom, questions inevitably come up around the very real obstacles to implementation, and strategies for overcoming them. A recent survey from the Games and Learning Publishing Council asked 700 teachers to identify and rank the major barriers to using games in the classroom. Here are the top 10 obstacles they list and ideas about how to overcome each one.

NPR
September 12, 2014

Indiana has just approved a license that clears a new pathway to the teaching profession. It allows anyone with a bachelor's degree, a B average, and approximately three years of related work experience to become a middle or high school teacher in a subject such as math, science or music, provided they pass a content test. The new teachers, called "career specialists," are required to enroll in a program to acquire teaching skills, but they'll essentially be learning on the job.

"I'm wondering what to read next." — Matilda, Roald Dahl