September 6, 2016
September 2, 2016
August 22, 2016
August 8, 2016
August 4, 2016
July 11, 2016
Many years ago my daughter, Meagan, had a homework assignment. Her literature teacher assigned a short story to read and Meagan was to figure out the theme.
June 27, 2016
June 20, 2016
Thanks Listen Current! Great stories await learners in grades 5-12 this summer and this listening comprehension program is free.
Get on board at Summer of Listening, an audio approach to learning about the real world. The program of podcasts stands to improve listening...
June 20, 2016
June 15, 2016
Our reading coach has encouraged all of our teachers to use a lot of the “think-pair-share” reading strategy. I’m an upper elementary grade teacher. Is “think-pair-share” research based?Shanahan responds:
This seems like such a straightforward question, but it has been tying me in knots for days. It all depends on what you mean by “research based.”...
June 1, 2016
I’m a literacy coach, and one of the teachers in one of my online classes asked the following question: “The article mentions that using a dictionary to define a word is a superficial method of vocabulary acquisition. While it may be too rash to discontinue using dictionaries, how should they be used in vocabulary instruction, and how much should...
May 24, 2016
May 3, 2016
Years ago I took ballroom dance. I used to write about those experiences in this space. It was a great opportunity for me as teacher, since with dance I struggled greatly (something there is about having your legs bound for the first year of life that makes graceful movement a challenge).
October 13, 2016
"Graphic novels are the books with the tattered covers crowding the “hold” shelf and the books that generate the longest wait lists," according to Kyle Redford, a fifth grade teacher in Northern California and the education editor for the Yale Center for Dyslexia and Creativity.
Books of this kind are growing in popularity and there are many options for readers of all ages,...
April 26, 2016
For nearly a century, leading educators and school textbooks have encouraged teachers to set a purpose for reading. Sometimes these purposes are called “motivation” or they might be stated as questions, “What is a population?” or “What is the major problem the main character faces?”
It makes sense. We want our kids to be purposeful and such purpose-focused reading leads to higher...
April 4, 2016
Anyone who has taught reading — or really any course that requires a textbook — knows about kids who struggle to make sense of the text. Often they don’t even try. The text just looks hard and they’re ready to run. We’ve been talking a lot about complex text since the Common Core State Standards (CCSS) burst on the scene. But most of that talk has focused on how to find texts that meet the...
February 26, 2016
January 20, 2016
January 11, 2016
Recently, I was asked to make some presentations. I suggested a session on close reading and another on teaching with complex text. The person who invited me said, “But that’s just one subject… the close reading of complex text. What else will you talk about?”
January 5, 2016
If you have ever had surgery, you probably have had the weird experience of signing off on a bunch of medical paperwork. The oddest form is the one that gives the surgeon permission to assault you. Think about it. Usually we don’t want people poking at us with knives. Doctors can’t do that either, unless we give our permission. Otherwise, every tonsillectomy would lead to a 911 call.