How To Teach Making Connections {Books and Activities}

I search my students’ faces until I see it – that lightbulb moment when they’ve grasped another reading comprehension strategy. That moment when sweet “Jane” understood why making connections to our books help her grow as a reader. Simple making connections activities and strong read alouds helped her blossom as a reader. These are the […]

How to Encourage Reading at Home During Distance Learning

One goal all teachers have is to get students to read at home. Reading at home outside of school has so many benefits like fostering a love for reading in children, developing language and reading skills, and stimulates the imagination. One of the many challenges of teaching this year will be how to encourage reading […]

How to Create Breakout Rooms on Google Meet for Guided Reading

One aspect of in-person learning that is a little challenging to recreate while distance learning is small groups. For guided reading, this is critical. If your district won’t let you use Zoom, there is a way to create breakout rooms on Google Meet. You might be wondering, “Why do I need breakout rooms for small […]

4 Ways to Use Emergent Readers in the Classroom

What do you think of when you think of emergent readers? Do you think of a bonus activity to just send home for students to have? An inside-recess coloring activity? Maybe even something you don’t have time for? Friends, if you fall into any of these categories, or are just unsure of how to use […]

Virtual Shared Reading: A Step-by-Step Guide

One of the balanced literacy components my students always loved was shared reading. They loved getting to read fun poems, read big books, and sing songs. I loved the opportunity to model fluent reading and how to think like a reader. As distance learning for many is beginning this fall, I wanted to take a […]

Best Practices for Virtual Reading Assessments

Distance learning has so many challenges – technology, student engagement, parent involvement (too much or too little), and the list goes on. Before distance learning reading instruction can take place, teachers will have to complete virtual assessments for each of their students. Without getting some best practices in place, it can be difficult to get […]

How to Get Books in Students’ Hands While Distance Learning

You’ve probably started setting up your virtual classroom in your learning platform. You’ve planned on how to get to know your students (and for them to get to know each other!). Maybe you’ve started working on your first day of virtual school lesson plans. Perhaps you’ve even started working on your plan to launch guided […]

How to Effectively Track Guided Reading Data

One commonly asked question I get is, “How do I know how to track guided reading progress in my students?” This is such a good question! Tracking guided reading data plays a key role in understanding these things about our readers: how much progress students have made when to move students up a level when […]

How to Easily Implement Guided Reading and Reader’s Workshop

I chatted with a brand new teacher who was trying to figure out which reading instruction model she should choose: reader’s workshop or guided reading. Not to mention, there’s also the book club model (or literature circles). She read the professional development books, asked her teaching team for opinions, and searched Pinterest until her eyes […]

The Ultimate Guide for Parents to Preventing the Summer Slide

Do you have parents who want quality resources to work with their children at home to prevent the summer slide? Do you have readers in your class who you want to keep moving forward throughout the summer? Then the At Home Leveled Reading Kits might be perfect for you and the parents in your classroom. […]

How to Prevent the Summer Slide in Reading {7 Ideas}

How do we prevent the summer slide in reading? You’ve worked so hard all year long to help your students build a strong foundation in reading and phonics. Studies have shown students can drop two reading levels over the summer. With summer quickly approaching, now is the time to start thinking about how your students […]

5 Top Literacy Sites for Easy Online Learning

Easily make online reading for kindergarten and first grade possible with these favorite websites. With all that is changing so quickly, I know that we are all feeling overwhelmed, anxious, and even a bit lost when it comes to tackling this all. Let’s be honest, as teachers, we do more than just provide an education. […]

How to Make Time for Guided Reading

The number one question and concern I get is that teachers say they don’t have time for guided reading. You have at least 22 students to manage in your classroom. You have mandatory things you have to fit into your reading block from your school or district. You have testing to do. I get it! […]

3 Comprehension Strategies for Second Grade Guided Reading

You sit down at your table, get your readers reading, then freeze. Oh no! I need to check for comprehension. What will my focus be? If you have followed me for even a few months, you probably have heard me share about my guided reading journey. It took some time, but once I found my […]

How to Share Reading Tips for Your Kindergarten Parents

What do you say when your kindergarten parents ask for reading tips? Do you struggle to offer them concrete, practical activities to do at home? I sure did! Until I got my little secret weapon ready, I found myself digging through files and grabbing charts and flashcards to send home with students who needed a […]

The Best Books for Questioning {+ Teaching Tips}

Do you have students who struggle with reading comprehension? We know our young readers need a toolbox of reading strategies to help them comprehend texts, but it’s hard to not get lost in the seemingly complicated lessons to teach them. One great strategy to help students become better readers is questioning. But, there are so […]

Quick and Simple Ways to Make Fun Sight Word Games

Motivating students to master sight words plays a large part in helping them learn the words, but how can we do that without reinventing the wheel? Before I figured out a simple and easy way to practice words and make fun sight word games, I constantly searched for the latest and greatest to practice. Scouring […]

Balanced Literacy in Kindergarten and First Grade

Balanced literacy in kindergarten and first grade is a crucial part of the day. See how this teacher explains each element and teaches it in her classroom.

Balanced literacy is truly a passion of mine.  I was lucky enough to be surrounded by amazing teachers who took me under their wings my first few years of teaching and really taught me how balanced literacy in kindergarten and first grade should look.  I have had several questions about when to do guided reading and […]