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August 27 2020

The Ultimate Guide to Virtual Teaching

The Read Side by Side Reading Program, a curriculum for teaching reading in grades 3-6, is designed to teach students how to access longer, more complex text and increase their interest and motivation to read.  As schools shift from in-person instruction to virtual instruction, these goals are even more important.  There are several reasons for this:

May 28 2020

5 Tips for Reading Aloud to Children

Reading aloud to children is one of the most effective routines for raising reading achievement and building a love of reading.  When an adult reads  to a child, he models fluent reading, a love of reading, and develops in the child comprehension skills. The child is exposed to new authors and text types, new words, and new ideas. Children learn to feel empathy for others as they explore the world from another perspective.  Snuggling up with a loved one and a book reinforces a feeling of connection, safety, and love (something our children need now more than ever).

April 22 2020

5 Solutions for Providing Books to Families During School Closures

Printable books, online articles, e-books, and audio books are wonderful resources to support reading at home, but nothing is quite as powerful as having access to REAL books.  Schools are getting creative at solving the problem of book access.  In this blog, we share their ideas with you!

April 9 2020

Reducing the COVID-Slide by Looking at Summer Slide Research

A growing number of states have now closed schools for the rest of the year.  Such closures have caused many to wonder, “Will students fall behind in reading ability?”  We believe the data on summer reading loss can help us project the answer.  In this blog article, we will inform you of that research and provide strategies for reducing the COVID-slide.

March 30 2020

Questions About Copyright During COVID-19

As teachers move from the classroom to the cloud, I am fielding a lot of questions related to copyright laws.  In this blog post, I offer guidance on copyright laws and fair use guidelines as they relate to educational materials.  As an educator myself, I understand the desire to provide resources to students at whatever cost, but urge educators to respect copyright, and lead by example.

What is a copyright?

Copyright is a form of protection that is automatically given to creators of literary, musical, dramatic, artistic, and intellectual works.  (Copyright exists immediately and automatically when the work is created in a tangible way.) The author of the work has the sole right to make copies of the work, distribute copies of the work, perform the work publicly, display the work publicly, and make modifications or adaptations to the work.

March 27 2020

Teaching Online: Paring Back Instruction & Limiting Technology

Publishers, organizations, and non-profits have provided a wealth of materials, links, software, video tutorials, and products to support online learning in the wake of COVID-19.  The outpouring of resources has been impressive, but sifting through these mass amounts of learning materials has left teachers (and parents) overwhelmed and fatigued. 

March 21 2020

On-Line School During COVID-19: 4 Things I Learned

My daughters’ school district launched online learning last week, only to be shut down by the state due to issues of inequality.  Here’s what I learned observing on-line learning in that short time.

March 10 2020

Mature Topics and Books in the Program

Are you reviewing the student books in the Read Side by Side Reading Program? All texts in the program have been thoroughly read and reviewed by our staff.  In this blog you will learn how titles were selected, what our criterion was for selecting (and not selecting) certain titles.  You will also be alerted to titles in the program that might be considered mature content.

Books in the Read Side by Side Reading Program have been selected for their quality, exposing all students to award-winning, rich literature.  Texts are selected according to:

November 14 2019

Nonfiction and the C. I. A. Approach: 3 Things I've Learned

Everyone has that genre that they avoid.  For most of my life, it was the genre nonfiction.  Maybe I didn’t have a topic I was interested enough in, maybe I didn’t know how to read nonfiction well, or maybe school had spoiled the nonfiction reading experience for me (this is probably most likely).  But what I do know is that nonfiction is now one of my favorite genres, and I think writing the Read Side by Side Reading Program and the C. I. A., Collect-Interpret-Apply, approach to reading gave me a whole new perspective.  As we celebrate nonfiction this month, let me share 3 things I have learned.

October 3 2019

5 Tips for Making Running Records Work in Your Classroom

For years I have used running records in my classroom, both formally and informally.  These assessments were valuable in that they nudged me to listen to my students read on a regular basis.  The information I gained through these assessments helped me better understand the strengths and difficulties my students were experiencing while reading.  They proved to be less reliable in matching students to an appropriate reading level and text. 

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