Rethinking How We Fill Book Boxes for Independent Reading Time

As early childhood teachers, we know the importance of reading. We know how important all the aspects are from phonics instruction to phonemic awareness instruction to reading comprehension to small group instruction to independent reading time. As we want our readers to blossom into strong readers, we know that providing them with the right tools […]

Rethinking How We Prompt Early Readers

You are sitting at the guided reading table and a child gets to a word and is staring blankly at you. You aren’t quite sure why they don’t know that word. You know the child can monitor for meaning as they are reading. You know the child has seen the word before. But you see […]

Sight Words vs. High-Frequency Words: What’s the Difference?

The difference between sight words and high-frequency words and why it matters. Recently many teachers have found themselves knee-deep in “the reading wars”. As I pause to think about this phrase, I think any experienced teacher with several years under their belt would say, “There is nothing new about this. We see big shifts in […]

7 Ways to Engage Reluctant Readers

At one time or another, we’ve all as teachers had that one student that dreaded coming to the guided reading table. The student who didn’t want to read to you or with you or out loud for anyone. Maybe even this student visibly hangs their head when it comes to reading. Reluctant readers are often […]

4 Things You Don’t Always Have to Do In Guided Reading Groups

Guided reading groups look different in each teacher’s classroom, but they usually have the same components. We all have a book introduction, read the text, and then teach a skill or strategy that our students need in order to grow as readers.  We all also can feel overwhelmed trying to squeeze everything into such a […]

What To Do When Guided Reading Isn’t Working: Tips for Guided Reading

Tips for Guided Reading When It Feels Like It’s Not Working Have you ever felt like your students aren’t making a lot of growth in guided reading? Does it seem like they have been working on the same level for a while? Have you found yourself wondering if you should continue doing guided reading? I […]

6 Tips for Managing Literacy Centers at End of the Year

Literacy centers have such a special place in the classroom. Students love stations that are meaningful, engaging, and purposeful. When a teacher is managing literacy centers well, guided reading can happen without with minimal distractions. Literacy centers can be powerful! Students get to read and write while participating in meaningful literacy experiences. Students get to […]

How to Improve Reading Fluency with Literacy Stations & Activities

When teachers ask me about how to help students move forward in guided reading instruction, I ask about what they are doing to also help improve reading fluency. These two things go hand in hand: fluency is just one of the five pillars of reading instruction. But, what if you don’t have time to do […]

Free Reading Assessments Toolkit for Teachers for Easier Testing

When it comes to completing reading assessments, there is always so much to do! Teachers have to gather their materials, prepare both students and parents, find testing checklists, and keep track of important data. I know you are already doing so much to serve your students, so I wanted to help make reading assessments easier […]

How to Teach Determining Importance in Reading

Use these activities and ideas to help your readers understand determining importance. “No, we don’t need that,” is a phrase I found myself saying a lot to my kids when we leave the house. They are in a phase of wanting to take all their toys and things with us when we leave the house […]

How to Help When Students Don’t Notice Reading Errors

One of the trickiest things for young readers to learn is to self-monitor and notice their own reading errors. It’s hard for readers to master and coordinate all of the pieces of reading like concepts about print, phonics, reading strategies, sight words, and self-monitoring. So what do we do to help coach readers to notice […]

Analyzing Running Records MSV: What To Do When Students Ignore Meaning

When it comes to analyzing running records, circling in the MSV section shows you what’s going on when a student is reading. Once you determine the information a student is using to solve an unknown word, what do you do when you notice that the student is only using syntax or visual cues, but ignoring […]

7 Things I Learned About Virtual Guided Reading Groups

When things went bananas last year and we were thrown into distance learning, I was excited to figure out how to launch virtual guided reading groups. I had tons and tons of teachers just like you asking for my help in figuring how to do virtual guided reading to keep moving readers forward. Just like […]

How to Teach Making Inferences {with a FREEBIE}

One of the reading comprehension strategies that I love teaching is making inferences. What I’ve learned from being in the classroom (and from my own kiddos) is that kids already make inferences all day long. We just have to bring this abstract idea into a more concrete concept that they can practice in reading. For […]

How to Introduce the Visualization Reading Strategy

Have you ever read a book, turned the page and saw the picture, and thought “That’s not at all what I was picturing in my mind?” This has happened to me so many times! That’s visualizing. When you use the words in a story or book to make a picture in your mind, you are […]

7 Fun Presidents’ Day Activities for Kids

The third Monday of February marks Presidents’ Day. I always have good intentions to celebrate and teach my students about this national holiday, but if I’m not careful, it can slip by! Planning my Presidents’ Day activities and lesson plans ahead of time makes such a big difference! When I’m thoughtful and intentional, I can […]

How to Create Interactive Read Aloud Lesson Plans in 3 Simple Steps

One of my favorite times of the day in the classroom was when we had our interactive read aloud! I loved having my students close to me on the carpet, their eyes and minds focused on the book we were reading. I loved picking out a book with vivid pictures and characters I thought they […]