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January 10. 2017

Expand Your Guided Reading Teaching Moves with Self-Reflection: A Teacher Tip from Fountas and Pinnell

Guided reading is not a static concept; the materials, teacher decisions, and interactive framework change over time as students grow in knowledge, skill, and independence, and teachers become more experienced. Fountas and Pinnell believe that teacher expertise and the professional development that supports it is the only way to raise student achievement. High-quality, highly effective implementation of guided reading involves a process of self-reflection.

 

Each time you work with a small group of students, you can learn a little more and hone your teaching skills. For example, in guided reading lessons, the goal is to teach the reader, not the text.

 

Self-reflect: Think about how your language interactions with readers support the ability of each student to initiate problem-solving actions. Ask yourself: How does my language support pass control to the reader? What have I taught the readers how to do today that they will be able to do with other texts? Remember, reflective teaching is rewarding because you are learning from teaching.

 

To read more about guided reading, and to ponder the challenges and opportunities that come from its implementation, pick up a copy of the NEW Guided Reading, Second Edition


You can also sign up for a FREE LIVE Webinar with Fountas and Pinnell on January 11 at 4:00 p.m. where the focus will be on teaching for comprehension across guided reading lessons. And don't forget to join us the next night on January 12 at 8:00 p.m. for a LIVE Twitter Chat with Fountas and Pinnell using #FPLiteracy to discuss more on Guided Reading!


Excerpted and adapted from "Guided Reading: The Romance and the Reality published in Reading Teacher," (Dec/Jan 2012)

January 3. 2017

Put literature study into action: A Teacher Tip from Fountas and Pinnell on Selecting Texts for Literature Study

Literature study enables students to help one another learn. Our goal is always student independence. We want individual students to take responsibility, manage themselves as learners, complete tasks, and discover how to learn on their own. At the same time, we recognize that learning is interdependent. 

We want our students to participate in learning groups in which they can contribute to the learning of others. The key characteristics of effective literature study are selecting texts, forming groups, establishing routines, facilitating discussion and varying the organizational models. Select a great variety of high-quality texts specifically for literature discussion.

Select texts for literature study that: 

• Are developmentally appropriate.

• “Teach” and “stretch.”

• Include layers of meaning.

• Exemplify worthwhile issues.

• Reflect a variety of perspectives.

• Represent our diverse world.

• Encompass a variety of authors/illustrators.

• Encompass a variety of genres, formats, and levels.

• Exemplify special features.

Excerpted with adaptations from Guiding Readers and Writers. To learn more about selecting texts and other key characteristics of effective literature study reference Fountas and Pinnell’s professional books.