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February 23. 2018

RECAP: Text. Talk. Teach. Twitter Chat with Fountas and Pinnell

On Thursday, February 22, Fountas and Pinnell hosted a Twitter Chat on the importance of fostering talk in the classroom. Below is a recap of that chat. Talking is thinking. Learn about the different ways in which you can offer your students valuable opportunities to express their thinking through TALK.

February 22. 2018

Ask Meli! February, 2018

Meli has been so busy reading all of your wonderful letters! She loves hearing from each and every one of you, and can tell that you have been practicing your reading and writing.

This month, Meli answers letters from her friends in Burleson, Texas.

Dear Meli,

Q: Hi my name is Melanie. I am in 2nd grade. I love your books. When is your birthday? Who is your best friend? What is your favorite toy? Love Melanie

: Hi Melanie! Thank you for your letter! My favorite toy is my red ball! I love my rubber chicken too! Woof! -Meli More...

February 15. 2018

Opportunities to Foster Thoughtful Talk


Students’ talk reflects their thinking. When students talk about what they are reading, they reveal their understandings and perspectives; communicate and refine their ideas; make meaning from texts; and make connections to their own experiences. Thoughtful talk is a treasure trove of information that will help inform your teaching.

Students need robust opportunities for varied talk structures within many different instructional contexts. Here are some settings in which you can foster those opportunities! More...


February 8. 2018

Cut Across the Path of Literacy Failure with Early Intervention

The early years of school are important for every child, but for those who find literacy learning difficult, every one of these years is critical. Intervention must be effective and focused on outcomes rather than simply on numbers of children served. The most effective intervention is implemented early in a child’s school career—before the cycle of failure is established. 

If you intervene to help readers who struggle, you want to do so in a way that will prevent further difficulties. The ability to observe and interpret reading behavior is foundational to effective teaching of struggling readers. Fountas and Pinnell talk extensively in their book, When Readers Struggle, about the essential experiences needed to support young children who find literacy difficult.

Ensure these essential literacy experiences daily: 

1. Talk—evaluate whether your students have enough time to talk with others and share their stories.

2. Texts—engage students in a large amount of continuous text from various genres that are of interest, are age/grade appropriate, and can be read with fluency and comprehension.

3. Teach—provide explicit, clear, effective instruction based on the observed behavior of your students.

A literate life is the right of every child—even (or especially) those who initially find it difficult.

~The Fountas & Pinnell Literacy™ Team

Join the fastest growing community in the field of literacy education. Get your free membership and stay up to date on the latest news and resources from Fountas and Pinnell at www.fountasandpinnell.com

For a well-organized, searchable archive of FAQs and discussions that are monitored by Fountas and Pinnell-trained consultants, go to our Discussion Board at www.fountasandpinnell.com/forum 

For more collaborative conversation, join the Fountas & Pinnell Literacy™ Facebook Learning Group at https://www.facebook.com/groups/FountasPinnell/ 
January 30. 2018

Ask Meli! January, 2018

We hope everyone is settling back to school after the holiday break, and discovering lots of new books! Meli continues to receive wonderful letters from her fans. She is always so impressed with how well the letters are written, and she enjoys looking on a map to see where her fans are from. If you can find Massachusetts on a map, you will see where Meli lives! 

Here are some questions from her friends at Hilltop Elementary School in Glen Burnie, MD.

Dear Meli,

Q: My name is Darlin. I go to Hilltop Elementary in Maryland. I just read Meli at the Vet. Were you sad in the vet? Love, Darlin

: Hi Darlin! I was a little nervous when I went to the vet. I know the vet helps me stay healthy, so I'm happy that she takes care of me! I really loved how colorful your letter was! Keep reading! Woof! –Meli More...

January 26. 2018

TWITTER CHAT RECAP: Choice and Why It Matters

On Thursday, January 26th, Irene C. Fountas and Gay Su Pinnell hosted a Twitter Chat on Choice and Why It Matters. People from all over the country to join the conversation on the importance of student choice in the classroom. Some favorite tweets included:

Independent reading is really the goal of all reading instruction. What children can do for themselves is what matters most, and they become more proficient in reading on their own by engaging and thinking and talking about books with others.
Labeling children by their level is detrimental to their self-esteem, their engagement, and, ultimately, their progress. The truth is that children can read books on a wide variety of levels, and in fact, they experience many different levels of books across the day.
We created the levels for books, not as labels for children, and our goal was that these levels be in the hands of people who understand their complexity and use them to make good decisions in instruction.

Read the whole chat below, and save the date for our next Twitter Chat on February 22nd at 8:00pm EST.

January 18. 2018

How to Foster a Love of Reading Through Choice


We want our students to love reading books. We want them to go over to a book shelf, choose a book that interests them, and hurry to dive in. The ability to choose a book that interests them, as opposed to one that is assigned to them, is vital to growing that passion. Here are some ways you can foster that love through student CHOICE. More...


January 9. 2018

How to Help Struggling Readers in Their Most Critical Year


According to recent research on the importance of early literacy skills, students not reading proficiently by the end of third grade are four times more likely than proficient readers to drop out of high school, (Hernandez 2011).  By now, you are starting to identify those students in your third-grade classrooms who are struggling. It’s not too late or too soon to help them and here’s how:

“School districts seeking to close the achievement gap must consider good classroom assessment, multiple layers of intervention, and the ongoing development of highly qualified teachers.” ~Fountas and Pinnell More...

December 20. 2017

Ask Meli! December, 2017

It's time for school to break for the holidays, so Meli wanted to be sure to wish you all healthy, happy, and FUN days off! She received many letters over the past year, and every single one of them have filled her heart with joy. She's so happy to know that children all over the world are practicing their reading and writing, and enjoying it! Keep it up! 

Here are some questions from her friends at Woodland Elementary East in Gages Lake, Illinois. More...

December 14. 2017

Season's Greetings from Fountas and Pinnell!

Season’s Greetings!

The best part of the holiday season is acknowledging those who make our lives meaningful. We want to take the time to recognize your dedication to teaching and learning, and for all you do to enhance the lives of your students through literacy.
 
As 2017 draws to a close, we have been thinking about how important it is to celebrate the progress of our students and the growing expertise each of us has been able to achieve this year.  May you enjoy some time for reflection, renewal, relaxation, and fellowship this holiday season. 
 
Wishing you a world of warm wishes,
Irene Fountas, Gay Su Pinnell and the Fountas & Pinnell Literacy™ Team