With this volume of their Jacob’s Ladder program Joyce VanTassel-Baskel and Tamra Stambaugh have devised a way to garner the most impact from nonfiction mini-lessons while allowing for flexibility and choice within the texts, says educator Erin Corrigan-Smith.
Tagged: reading comprehension
Implement the elements of reciprocal teaching – predicting, questioning, clarifying, and summarizing – using Lori Oczkus’s revised book on reading comprehension. ELA teacher Erin Corrigan-Smith likes the guidance in starting the scaffolded discussion method and more.
Stambaugh and VanTassel-Baska focus on purposeful planning, finding stories to engage young readers, and discovering ways to use readings to get the most impactful writing from students while increasing their overall comprehension, says teacher Erin Corrigan-Smith.
Inner-city history teacher Aaron Brock has developed a childrens’ book project for eighth graders, many of whom struggle with academic literacy. He details how his step-by-step approach addresses important skills and serves as a synthesis and assessment tool.
Karen Bromley guides educators to “The Next Step in Vocabulary Instruction” by uncovering the “why” of teaching vocabulary and its role in comprehension and fluency. Reviewer Linda Biondi highly recommends the book’s extensive strategies and activities.
Reading comprehension is a primary goal in Aaron Brock’s middle school history classroom. Building on last year’s annotation experiments, Brock has adapted the familiar 5 W’s strategy to help students pay closer attention to the meaning behind the words. It’s working.
ELA consultant Mike Fisher urges educators to not be distracted by the so-called “close reading” anchor standard in the Common Core. “Close reading is not a thing. It is not a skill. It is not a big idea.” The true objective, he says, is reading comprehension.
Many teachers are frustrated by Common Core directions to ignore prior knowledge when teaching students to analyze texts, says literacy coach Laura Robb. She recommends a proactive approach: show students how to do it for themselves. Tips included!
In Whole Novels for the Whole Class, Ariel Sacks offers a student-centered approach that promotes love of reading and deepens discussions, says reviewer Heather Wolpert-Gawron. Sacks’ documented strategies also address Common Core standards.
Reviewer Linda Biondi likes everything about the new edition of Jeff Wilhelm’s popular book on improving comprehension by “thinking aloud.” Lots of examples from the classroom, a DVD with teachers using the strategies in class, and it’s CCSS-aligned.