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Archive for 2010

Expect and Encourage Opt-in Learning Behaviour

Monday, 4 October 2010 at 9:36 pm

Many students choose to listen rather than actively participate in learning conversations. Yet to achieve the best possible outcomes, teachers must expect that students OPT IN to literacy learning; opting out should not be an option. It must be our clear expectation to students that we expect full and active participation.

I’ve recently been talking up the importance of active engagement by students to build proficiency …

Friendship Box Writing Stimulus

Tuesday, 14 September 2010 at 9:57 am

What is a Friendship Box

The Friendship Box is a box containing a name card for each student. Students are assigned short writing tasks which prompt them to write for a variety of purposes. By drawing a name from the box students have an audience for the task. Note: Students enjoy decorating the name cards so that they are reflective of their personalities. A profile of …

Modelled Writing …

Tuesday, 31 August 2010 at 2:56 pm

When does the teacher stop?

The simple answer is that we don’t. The aim of modelled writing is use the “think aloud strategy” to model what goes on in the head of the writer. Not only does this give the teacher opportunities to explicitly talk about elements of the writing process, but also allows students to observe the way a writer crafts and records a text. …

2010 World Congress on Reading

Monday, 23 August 2010 at 7:27 pm

Angela Ehmer & Marisa Battiglini meet Professor P. David Pearson

It’s been a busy month, but I finally have a moment to reflect on the World Congress on Reading held last month at the SKYCITY Convention Centre, Auckland.

What a wonderful opportunity for literacy educators, the world over, to come together for this world class event.

Marisa (Battiglini) and I were scheduled to present a session for secondary …

Top 10 Traits of Young Writers

Tuesday, 20 July 2010 at 11:43 am

Writing is a tricky business for many students. Many dislike writing and some students experience feelings of anxiety from the words, “Take out your writing folder”. So what do proficient writers know and understand about designing literary and non-literary texts, that others do not?

Highly effective young writers know that:

Writing is about purpose and audience. These writers write with a sense of purpose and understand the …

Guided Reading Q & A

Monday, 12 July 2010 at 7:13 am

My recent post, “Round Robin Reading/Guided Reading – Is there a difference?” prompted great interest and many queries. Some of the more frequently asked questions about Guided Reading are outlined below.

Q: What can the students who finish early do whilst waiting for other students to finish?
A: There are no hard and fast rules and we must respond according to our knowledge of …

Round Robin Reading / Guided Reading – Is there a difference?

Tuesday, 15 June 2010 at 7:19 pm

Refining the practice of guided reading is a priority goal in many of the schools I am working in. Understandings of guided reading vary enormously, as does the instruction around guided reading from classroom to classroom.

What it is . . .

an opportunity for every student to independently problem solve the text or section of the text.

What it isn’t . . .

a group of …

The Reading Wall

Monday, 3 May 2010 at 8:58 pm

I am relishing the opportunity to do some independent coaching at an outer Brisbane primary school. As part of a whole school approach to improve reading outcomes, I am implementing a strategy with which I have experienced great success over many years of working with harder to teach students.

It has been almost ten years since I first introduced The Reading Wall as part of …

The Bookmark Book – Reflections on Reading and Word Solving Strategies

Monday, 12 April 2010 at 10:47 am

The Bookmark Book is the newest publication by Literacy Solutions to support busy teachers. The book contains 82 reproducible bookmarks which prompt readers to reflect about what has been read, and/or apply word solving strategies. These can be used to support the reading of independently read texts, or to use during guided, collaborative or cooperative reading strategies.

The Bookmark Book is part of the package for …

A National Curriculum: What’s in Store?

Sunday, 14 March 2010 at 2:43 pm

A national curriculum: What’s in store? Will this be the beginning of the end to play based learning?

Welcome to March. We’re in full swing and most of us can barely recall the recent holiday.

The new draft national curriculum was released on March 1 this year for a three month public consultation period. On reviewing the draft, it’s all great in theory.  We are …