In Katie Durkin’s ELA classroom, seventh graders pass along what they’ve learned to future classes via this Inheritance Box project, part of a literacy plus history unit that also teaches collaboration and promotes student choice. Katie takes us through it step by step.
When students tackle fact-rich texts, teachers may need to shift into focused instruction mode, modeling the strategic processing nonfiction readers use to make sense of new information. Cummins and Webb share a teacher-student partnership scenario.
Teachers across the curriculum will welcome this post by nonfiction expert Marlene Correia and Melissa Stewart, author of 180+ nonfiction books for kids. Learn why the five categories of children’s nonfiction they identify not only excite and engage but are what many students say they want to read most.
Twenty years after the 9/11 attacks, it’s essential to teach students about the lives lost, the heroes who helped, and the Islamophobia that followed. To examine 9/11’s legacy and impact, middle grades teacher Kasey Short recommends key online resources and four YA novels.
Asking three basic questions can help middle grades readers connect with informational texts and make sense of their meaning. Literacy consultant Sunday Cummins describes several classroom-tested steps that can aid students in identifying and analyzing new information in nonfiction material.
Similar to the benefits of class read-alouds and independent reading, podcasts can be incorporated as a way to increase students’ understanding of stories and information, with kids often making “text to self” connections. Kathie Palmieri includes sources and favorites.
To celebrate Women’s History Month, middle grades teacher Kasey Short offers a list of nonfiction and fiction books representing a wide range of girl’s and women’s voices and experiences. All students benefit from reading about smart, brave women who make positive impacts.
Literacy specialist Sunday Cummins shares her “explode to explain” technique, using a Newsela story about shark-spotting aerial drones along the beaches of Australia. It’s one more tool to help students develop a skill set for understanding and retaining informational text.
Examining the human impact of climate change through texts allows students to connect climate science to the human cost of climate change, develop empathy for communities impacted by climate change, and discover more about climate justice, writes ELA teacher Kasey Short.
When students get beyond their initial engagement in high-interest topics this fall, they will need strategies to empower their reading experience. Literacy coach Sunday Cummins suggests a mnemonic tool to help nonfiction readers make informed predictions: T.H.I.E.V.E.S!