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October 17. 2017

Teacher Tip: Nurture Young Learners’ Curiosity through Inquiry

All children need the opportunity for play and inquiry. A rich and joyful early literacy environment in which reading, writing, and talking are part of play, often become play. We must remember that children, especially young children, learn through play. Play enhances language and literacy learning. When your teaching is inquiry-oriented, you enable young children to learn how to learn, investigate and discover new understandings, and pose wonderings about the possibilities.
 
With two kinds of inquiry, information seeking and wondering, children are immersed in constructive learning that results in an exciting, meaningful expansion of knowledge that continues through life. Fountas and Pinnell discuss the inquiry process in depth in their book, Literacy Beginnings.
 
Try these four simple steps of the inquiry process to guide your teaching and propel literacy learning:
1. Playful Exploration (Notice, Wonder)
2. Define Questions (Plan for Observing)
3. Find Out (Investigate, Explore)
4. Share Learning (Discuss, Draw Conclusions)

October 12. 2017

Fountas & Pinnell Literacy™ Core Values: A Vision for Literacy Education

In order to build a successful school community in which all members are treated and treat others with empathy, kindness, and respect while recognizing every child's right to grow up literate, everyone must all share the same vision and goals. 

Fountas and Pinnell believe that through dynamic literacy education that exemplifies common beliefs and core values, students will come to understand their physical, social, and emotional world and their roles as informed global citizens, which are hallmarks of the literate lives they can lead. Below are the 10 Core Values on which Fountas and Pinnell's work is based. Do these values reflect those of your school? More...

October 10. 2017

Teacher Tip: Selecting Guided Reading Texts for Intermediate/Middle-Level Readers

For all students from the first years of school to upper elementary and middle school, text selection is very important. We recommend short texts for guided reading even at intermediate and middle-grade levels. The things students learn reading short texts can be applied to longer texts in independent reading. Here are some other considerations for selecting texts for intermediate/middle-level readers:
  • Select nonfiction texts with compelling topics and stories that will engage readers.
  • Select texts that have excellent examples of high-quality writing in the genre.
  • Examine the illustrations to assure that nonfiction texts include complex graphics that help readers learn how to synthesize information from them and integrate it with the body of the text.
  • Assure that fiction texts have high quality illustrations (where applicable) that enhance the meaning of the text and communicate the mood.
  • Assure that the range of texts are accurate, culturally sensitive, and reflect the diversity of our world.
  • Select texts that have deeper messages so that students can reach out for them.

From Guided Reading: Responsive Teaching Across the Grades by Irene C. Fountas and Gay Su Pinnell. Copyright (c) 2017 by Irene C. Fountas and Gay Su Pinnell. Published by Heinemann.

October 5. 2017

Daily Lit Bit - 10/5/17

Work with colleagues in your school to establish a set of core values that will form the backbone for every decision you make. A set of values is not the same as a comprehensive curriculum. It’s a known set of statements that gives you a touchstone against which to measure your decisions.

October 4. 2017

VIDEO: The Story of The Literacy Continuum

The Literacy Continuum is at the center of all Fountas & Pinnell Literacy™ resources. It contains the text demands, competencies, and behaviors on which such valuable resources as Leveled Literacy Intervention, Benchmark Assessment Systems, and Fountas & Pinnell Classroom™ were built. In order to implement these resources effectively, you must intimately understand this indispensable literacy tool.

This video shows the story of how The Literacy Continuum was conceptualized, and how it can be used to guide your assessment, activate responsive teaching, and support your students on their language and literacy journeys. 

This is The Literacy Continuum.


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