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August 8. 2018

4 Ways to Prepare for Fountas & Pinnell Classroom™

Your school has just invested in Fountas & Pinnell Classroom™, and you’re wondering where to begin. Before you start tearing boxes open to get to those wonderful materials, it’s important to take the time to come up with an action plan. Below are some of the steps that are recommended you take before you even start taking off the tape!

You can find an Interactive Action Plan for preparing for Fountas & Pinnell Classroom™ (FPC) HERE. Below is a short breakdown of this plan and how to use it to get started! 

Step 1: Define Your Vision and Values

In Step 1 of the Interactive Action Plan, you will define and record your values and goals. Defining your values establishes a foundation upon which to build your instructional priorities and instructional plan. You will first review and reflect on Fountas and Pinnell’s Core Values. You might find that you share the same values or perhaps you might want to use them to guide the decisions you make.  Then you will take time to envision and name the values you have for literacy instruction in your own classroom. 

Step 2: Set Your Goals

Let your core values established in Step 1 form the backbone of your decisions and lead you to set instructional goals that reinforce those values. In Step 2 from the Interactive Action Plan, you’ll have the opportunity to identify and prioritize your implementation and instructional goals through a self-assessment of your current literacy instruction.

Step 3: Get to Know Fountas & Pinnell Classroom™

Use Step 3 in the Interactive Action Plan to get to know FPC and get familiar with all of the instructional contexts that are in the system. Here, is where you would also take the time to get familiar with The Fountas & Pinnell Literacy Continuum, which is the instructional anchor for every goal, book, and lesson in FPC. The Literacy Continuum is a mandatory tool for being able to implement this system effectively, so it’s critical to get to know it as much as you can. Here is a link to a Study Guide if you’re not sure where to start.  In this step, you will also map out an implementation plan, as well as identify professional learning needs and opportunities.

Step 4: Plan Your Literacy Time

Time for literacy is critical, but finding time to fit it all in can be a challenge. It will help to create a literacy schedule in advance, which is what you will do in Step 4 of the Interactive Action Plan. You will plan a week (or weeks) in your Fountas & Pinnell Classroom™ using examples to get you started. Thoughtful and intentional planning is needed to ensure efficient, engaging, and effective literacy opportunities in your classroom. 

This Interactive Action Plan is sure to prepare you for the implementation of this exciting new literacy system. But Fountas & Pinnell Classroom™ is not just a literacy system, it is a journey—a journey that will transform your classroom, your teaching, and the literacy lives of your students. So congratulations on the journey ahead!

~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/ 
August 2. 2018

VIDEO: Take a tour of The Literacy Quick Guide!

Watch this walk through video of this first-of-its-kind teaching, coaching, and reference tool that is a must-have resource for your classroom. It’s the blueprint for a coherent literacy system that will increase the impact of responsive literacy teaching and cultivate a love of reading and writing for all students.

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July 18. 2018

Fountas and Pinnell Talk About Why Reading Matters

Fountas and Pinnell were recently interviewed by USA TODAY reporter, Amy Sinatra Ayres, for an article in their fall, 2018 Back to School magazine. In the article, "Reading Matters: Inspiring the next generation of bookworms" they emphasize the importance of children reading books to gain insight into the human experience, and a better understanding of the world around them. They also offer advice on how to inspire reluctant readers and encourage them to read for pleasure.

To purchase this issue of USA TODAY Back to School and read the article, go here.

(Photo credit: USA TODAY Magazines)

June 20. 2018

Why ODMS (Online Data Management System)?

For those who have purchased Benchmark Assessment System, Sistema de evaluación de la lectura, Leveled Literacy Intervention System, or Fountas & Pinnell Classroom™ Guided Reading Collection, you may know that with your purchase you automatically gain access to a one-year, free trial subscription to the Online Data Management System (ODMS). If you have taken advantage of this offer, then you know how valuable this tool is. If not, you are missing out. Here’s why. More...

June 14. 2018

How to Engage Parents and Caregivers in Fountas & Pinnell Classroom™

Now that Fountas & Pinnell Classroom™ is up and running in your classroom, you might be looking for ways to collaborate with parents and caregivers to keep your students engaged when they go home. As you begin to plan for next year, think about ways to actively engage parents and caregivers in the literacy lives of their children. Your students will benefit greatly from communication  between home and school.

Here are some ways that parents and caregivers can support their children at home.

  • Listen to the books their children bring home to read
  • Read books aloud to their children 
  • Talk about books together
  • Go to the library 
  • Encourage their children to write for authentic purposes (such as a grocery list, a letter, or directions) More...
June 6. 2018

9 Ways to Prevent Summer Slide

Summer Slide is a term that has become all-too popular among educators. It’s a term that was created to describe when students return from summer break reading at a lower level than they did when they left the previous school year. We know that Summer Slide happens when students don’t practice their reading or writing over the summer, but it actually starts during the school year. If students don’t get hooked on reading in the classroom, they aren’t going to continue reading in the summer. So how can we prevent the Summer Slide? Here are some ideas.

1. Look for ways that books can be provided to children during the summer. For example, you might work with the public library to have a public library/parent night to make sure families have library cards and are aware of services. More...

May 17. 2018

The POWER of Professional Learning

Teacher expertise is at the heart of student achievement. Continuous professional learning using a rich variety of resources and opportunities is crucial to elevating that teacher expertise. Materials themselves help teachers grow professionally, but alongside that teachers need good professional learning opportunities. Professional learning makes the work come alive.

Professional learning gives you renewed energy. It strengthens instructional decision making, empowers teachers with the latest in literacy thinking, transforms teaching and learning, and invokes a culture of collegiality and teacher expertise. Read on to learn more about the benefits of professional learning, as well as the variety of opportunities that are available to you and your colleagues. 

The Importance of Collaboration

Perhaps the most valuable aspect of professional learning and development is the talk and problem solving that takes place between colleagues. Through regular, planned professional learning opportunities, you and your fellow teachers can further develop your craft, strengthen your instructional decision-making, and confidently deliver high-impact literacy instruction that enhances the learning experience of each student. More...