January 6. 2017

Fountas & Pinnell Online Resources: What they are and how to find them


Whether you're a new user of Fountas and Pinnell materials or a current user, you most likely need to access the Fountas & Pinnell Online Resources. We recently updated our website, so things have changed a bit. In case you're having trouble gaining access or finding the Online Resources, here's a little how-to.

What are the Fountas & Pinnell Online Resources?

The Fountas & Pinnell Online Resources is a repository of printable resources, record keeping forms, videos, and more that are referenced in various Fountas & Pinnell Literacy™ products. Most of these resources may have been available through a CD-ROM at one point, but in order to meet the technological needs of our customers, it made sense to have them be accessible online. 

Where do I find the link to the Online Resources?

You can quickly find the link to the Online Resources here or you can go to www.fountasandpinnell.com and click on the "Visit other FPL sites" button on the top right-hand corner of the homepage (see image obove). The first item on that page will be the Online Resources. You will need to log in to gain access. If you don't have a login, you will need to register, which is free and easy.

How do I gain access to the Online Resources?

If you are a first-time user, you will need an access code once you are registered. You can find your access codes in different places depending on the product and edition. Some examples are: the inside front cover of your System Guides for LLI, Assessment Guides for BAS, or in the Introduction of Guided Reading. If you have one of the earlier editions of LLI or BAS that comes with the Technology Package and the physical CD-ROMs and DVDs, you will not have received an access code with the purchase of those systems. You can get an access code by contacting Heinemann Tech Support here or by calling 800-225-5800. You must have already purchased a product to acquire an access code to its Online Resources.

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 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. 
December 27. 2016

Cut Across the Path of Literacy Failure: A Teacher Tip from Fountas and Pinnell on Intervening Early

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. Excerpted and adapted from When Readers Struggle: Teaching That Works.