Professional Development

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 […]

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 […]

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 […]

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 […]

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 […]

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 […]

What to Teach During Guided Reading {with FREE List}

You sit down at the guided reading table. Five sweet smiling faces are staring back at you. You have a perfectly organized guided reading binder. Then what? Do you know what guided reading skills you need to cover with this group? Do you feel prepared and relaxed or slightly anxious about knowing what to do […]

Why You Need Guided Reading in Your Classroom

Reading small groups are hands-down my favorite way to teach reading. Not only do I see results in my students’ reading skills, but they love it. When I called a group to my small group table, they were all always excited. There are so many benefits of reading small groups. Trust me when I say […]

Second Grade Guided Reading: Your Guide to a 3 Day Lesson

Second grade guided reading usually includes levels K, L, and M. Friends, I got so comfortable with the one-day lesson plan for guided reading in kindergarten. In first grade, I started realizing that time seemed a little rushed in the upper levels. Then, when I started planning for the Second Grade Guided Reading Kits, I […]

The Secret to a Successful Guided Reading Group

“Amanda, there must be a secret to successful guided reading. What is it?” I get asked this exact question often. Teachers want students to experience success in reading through guided reading, but sometimes they feel like a hamster in a wheel. They are doing the “right” things, but it feels like going through the motions. […]

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 […]

4 Ways to Support Struggling Readers with Comprehension

We spend a lot of time at the guided reading table coaching our students through growing their reading skills. Many times we get to the end, check for comprehension, and it seems like the little reader has no idea what they read. They are struggling with comprehension. Where am I going wrong? What am I […]

Best Literacy Podcasts

Are you looking for some EASY PD? We are all busy teachers and listening to literacy podcasts has been a simple way for me to grow in my literacy teaching practice! Check out these 5 must listen to literacy podcasts. #balancedliteracy #readingteacher

We are all SO busy! That’s why I love a good podcast that lets me squeeze in some professional learning while driving, getting ready, or exercising. Literacy podcasts can be harder to come by, but today I’m sharing a few that I think can be helpful! Some are entire podcasts dedicated to literacy, and some […]

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 […]

Interactive Writing in the Classroom

Interactive Writing, everything you need to know to get started!

Interactive writing is one of the many elements of a balanced literacy model.  There are SO many benefits to doing interactive writing with your kiddos! They learn alongside you! They feel proud of their work and feel like an author! They have confidence because they are successful with your scaffolding! Everyone observes the writing process! […]

Which type of professional development interests you?