May 23. 2017

Introducing the NEW Fountas & Pinnell Phonics, Spelling, and Word Study System!

This is the first in a series of blogs on teaching phonics with Fountas & Pinnell. Check back next week when we take a deeper dive into how phonics instruction works in other Fountas & Pinnell Literacy™ Resources

Say hello to organized, systematic instruction with the new Fountas & Pinnell Phonics, Spelling, and Word Study System! In August of 2017, Fountas and Pinnell will release an updated, enhanced version of their 2003 resource, Phonics Lessons. See details below to get a closer look.
"In a world rich with language and literacy, each word matters. Words give us a way to communicate—to think, talk, read, and write—and to activate and enjoy a literate life." ~Irene C. Fountas and Gay Su Pinnell

The underlying message of the previous edition still applies; the lessons are still meant to be used the same way. The two biggest enhancements are the connection to the NEW Comprehensive Phonics, Spelling, and Word Study Guide as well as the organization. This version will be MUCH MORE user-friendly with the inclusion of folders and labels and the replacement of the Teacher Resources Binder for Online Resources and Ready Resources, which are now organized by lesson. Let's take a closer look at this exciting new system.

New features include:

  • Lessons driven by principles from The Comprehensive Phonics, Spelling, and Word Study Guide. Each lesson is now driven by a principle from The Comprehensive Phonics, Spelling, and Word Study Guide, which was released as a critical companion to the new Fountas & Pinnell Literacy Continuum in 2017. The principles from the original edition, Phonics Lessons, were taken from The Continuum of Literacy Learning (2011). This new edition is a meticulously constructed comprehensive picture of linguistic and language knowledge the students develop on their own to become expert word solvers. A copy of the guide is included in the system.
  • New Online Resources. Instead of the binder with all of your teacher resources, you will have access to everything you need for your lessons in the easily accessible Fountas & Pinnell Online Resources. All of your teacher resources will be available as printable PDFs that are organized by the nine areas of learning, and then within those areas, the resources are organized by lesson number. Much more convenient! 
  • New Ready Resources. Preprinted, perforated, and preassembled lesson materials enable you to spend less time prepping and more time teaching with the Phonics, Spelling, and Word Study Ready Resources
  • Folders and labels. Continuing with the theme of better organization, this new system will now come with folders and labels so you can choose to organize your lessons by the nine areas of learning, by month, or both! 
  • Inclusion of Sing a Song of Poetry. Page 4 of each lesson in the system will have explicit cross-referencing to Sing a Song of Poetry, which is a collection of poems that will enable you to help children use and enjoy oral and written language.

The true purpose and promise of phonics instruction is to expand, refine and activate students’ reading and writing power. The Fountas & Pinnell Phonics, Spelling, and Word Study System will enable you to nurture that control. “Our goal is powerful teaching that enables all children to become word solvers in the process of becoming effective readers and writers who enjoy the many rewards of literacy.” ~Irene C. Fountas and Gay Su Pinnell


The Fountas & Pinnell Phonics, Spelling, and Word Study System for grades K and 1 will be released in August of 2017, while grade 2 and 3 will follow in 2018. To learn more about the exciting new system visit

~The Fountas & Pinnell Literacy™ Team

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May 23. 2017

6 Ways to Help Children Learn Reading through Name Charts: A Teacher Tip from Fountas & Pinnell

A name is very powerful. It is often the first example of a written word a child sees. Name charts can help children learn their own names and the letters in the names of their friends, notice that names begin with an uppercase letter, and make connections to other words that have the same first letter or similar word parts.

Here are 6 ideas for quick games you can play using a name chart:

  1. Read the names in a shared way as you use a pointer to point to each (in order or randomly).
  2. Have children line up, quickly touch their own names when they come to the chart, and then sit down.
  3. “I’m thinking of someone who has a name that begins with M. Who can come up and find it?”
  4. Deal out cards or slips of paper on which children’s names are written. Call the names in alphabetical order. The child who has the name you called puts it in a pocket chart.
  5. Place a set of name cards at the word study center. Have the children sort the names by first letter or match pairs of name cards.
  6. Clap each name and have children tell the number of syllables they hear.

From When Readers Struggle: Teaching That Works by Irene C. Fountas and Gay Su Pinnell. Copyright (c) 2009 by Irene C. Fountas and Gay Su Pinnell. Published by Heinemann.

May 19. 2017

Daily Lit Bit - 5/19/17

All students need consistent and clear messages across instructional contexts. Our belief is that the curriculum must have a coherent design and a coherent underlying literacy theory rather than simply being a mix of “this and that,” without an eye to how different parts work together to form a cohesive whole.

May 18. 2017

Daily Lit Bit - 5/18/17

Each time you prompt in a guided reading lesson, it is a call to action. It evokes something the reader can do. You need to teach for the strategic action before you can call for the reader to engage it. When you see the reader is engaging in the behaviors independently, you move beyond prompting to reinforce it.

May 17. 2017

This Is Fountas & Pinnell Classroom™

Over the past few months, we have slowly pulled back the curtain on Fountas & Pinnell Classroom™--a first-of-its-kind system for high-quality, classroom-based literacy instruction. There have been blog posts, webinars, and Twitter chats covering every angle of this exciting new system. In case you missed anything, below is a recap. 


Below are the blogs we have released over the past few months on Fountas & Pinnell Classroom™ and the many ways this system can be used to help you build a community of literacy learning right in your classroom. Each blog will take you on a deeper dive into everything from how the system was developed to why, and all the ways in which it will change the landscape of literacy learning.


Starting in February 2017, we started a series of live webinars and Twitter chats that covered the overall Fountas & Pinnell Classroom system and the major instructional contexts that make it up: interactive read-aloud, shared reading, and guided reading. Each month, we presented a new chat and webinar on a different Fountas & Pinnell Classroom-related subject. In case you missed them, below are links to the recorded webinars and the recap of the Twitter chats.

"Fountas & Pinnell Classroom™: The Future of Literacy Education is HERE?"

"Putting Interactive Read-Aloud Into Action with Fountas & Pinnell Classroom™"

"Putting Shared Reading Into Action with Fountas & Pinnell Classroom™"

"Putting Guided Reading Into Action with Fountas & PInnell Classroom™"

Fountas & Pinnell Classroom™ is set to start releasing in August 2017. Be sure to join the Fountas & Pinnell Literacy™ Community to stay up-to-date on any further developments. If you have any questions on pricing and how you can start ordering, click here to find your local sales representative who can walk you through all of your options.

~The Fountas & Pinnell Literacy Team