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July 6. 2018

FAQ Friday: How does the Benchmark Assessment System contribute to my knowledge of children and how they develop as readers?

Q: How does the Fountas & Pinnell Benchmark Assessment System contribute to my knowledge of children and how they develop as readers?

A: The comprehensive assessment procedures and the variety of tools and options provided in Benchmark Assessment Systems 1 and 2 are rich resources for helping you systematically examine a child's strengths and needs, helping you think about the important link between assessment and instruction. You will find detailed information about analyzing the reading behaviors of a child on an instructional-level text and tools for linking those behaviors to specific instructional goals in the Assessment Guide. The Fountas & Pinnell Literacy Continuum: Expanded Edition, included in every Benchmark Assessment System, is the foundation for instruction. You can make a direct link from the data gathered with the assessment to The Literacy Continuum's specific behaviors to notice, teach, and support in every instructional context related to literacy. The Professional Development Videos are another rich resource. They are designed to help you conduct efficient and effective assessments, learn how to interpret the results, and connect results to instruction. Over time, observations made through the assessment, instruction designed to move the child ahead from level to level, and follow-up assessment will deepen your understanding of literacy development.

<<To see more FAQs or get answers to other questions from a trained consultant, please visit the Discussion Board!>>

July 3. 2018

Teacher Tip: Expand Your Guided Reading Moves with Self-Reflection

Guided reading is not a static concept; the materials, teacher decisions, and interactive framework change over time as students grow in knowledge, skill, and independence, and teachers become more experienced. Fountas and Pinnell believe that teacher expertise and the professional development that supports it is the only way to raise student achievement. High-quality, highly effective implementation of guided reading involves a process of self-reflection.

Each time you work with a small group of students, you can learn a little more and hone your teaching skills. For example, in guided reading lessons, the goal is to teach the reader, not the text.

Self-reflect: Think about how your language interactions with readers support the ability of each student to initiate problem-solving actions. Ask yourself: How does my language support pass control to the reader? What have I taught the readers how to do today that they will be able to do with other texts? Remember, reflective teaching is rewarding because you are learning from teaching.

From Guided Reading: Responsive Teaching Across the Grades by Irene C. Fountas and Gay Su Pinnell. Copyright (C) 2017 by Irene C. Fountas and Gay Su Pinnell. Published by Heinemann.

June 28. 2018

FAQ Friday: What Professional Development Is Available for FPC?

Q: What professional development is available for Fountas & Pinnell Classroom™ (FPC)?

A: There are several professional development options for FPC.

Included with your FPC Purchase:

Optional Fee-Based:

  • On-Site: One-day, on-site seminars for each instructional context and an FPC Overview seminar
  • Online: Interact digitally with Fountas & Pinnell-trained consultants. Multiple interactive webinars for each instructional context and an FPC Overview webinar
  • Custom: 10-day custom PD plan for schools/districts that have purchased the whole FPC System. 

For additional information and pricing, please visit: or call 800-225-5800 x1100.

June 28. 2018

Ask Meli! June, 2018

Most of you are done with school for the summer but Meli has been hard at work answering letters! This month, we have letters from a group of second graders from Northview Primary School in Findlay, OH.

Q: I am in second grade, my name is Ashlee. I am from Findlay, Ohio. I am wondering how the surgery went. I am hoping you still don't hurt. I am hoping you could be my friend. I read Meli Goes to Surgery Rehab and they were really good. I am hoping for more Meli books. ~Ashlee

: Hi Ashlee! It was so great to hear from you! My surgery went well I'm all better now! The vet took really good care of me! Swimming helped me get nice and strong, plus it's a lot of fun! Keep reading! Woof! ~Meli

Q: Hi Meli! My name is Emerson. I’m a boy. I'm 8 and we read all your books and some girls cry. Does Meli's foot still hurt? You are so so cute and I hope you make more books! And I hope you have a good year! ~Emerson

: Hi Emerson! Thank you so much for the letter! I'm so happy to hear you like my books! This year has been great so far, I hope yours is too! My leg is all better now, thanks to the nice people at the pet hospital! Keep reading! Woof! ~Meli

Q: Hi! I read Meli Goes to Surgery, and Meli Goes to the Pool to Rehab. You are sooooooooo cute! I love to run with my brother. His name is Scout. What do you love to do inside? ~Ady

: It was so nice to get a letter from you! I love to run around too! When I am at the dog park I play with the other dogs! Then when I get home I take a nap in my red dog bed! It’s my favorite way to spend the day! Keep reading! Woof! ~Meli

Q: Hi Meli! I am Riley. Did the surgery go well? Can you run up the stairs? The surgery made me cry. You are so cute it is like omg you are like a sister to me and whenever I think about you I cry. ~Riley

: Hi Riley! I loved reading your letter! Thank you so much! My surgery went really well! I am able to run and play, just like before I got hurt! Dog rehab was a lot of fun! I learned how to swim! Keep reading! Woof! ~Meli 

Q: Does your leg still hurt from the surgery? It was so sad and me and my friend Riley we starting to cry. Oh I forgot, I am an 8 year old girl named Aryana. Ary for short. You are soooooooo cute, like lol it was so sad when we read Meli Goes to Surgery. ~Ary

: Hi Aryana! I loved hearing from you! Please don't be sad about the surgery, the vet at the pet hospital took good care of me so I could get better! Now I can go back to playing fetch and going for walks! Keep reading! Woof! ~Meli

Q: Dear Meli. I am a boy. My name is Easton. I hope you liked rehab. Love Easton

: Hi Easton! Reading your letter made me very happy, thank you so much! Dog rehab was a lot of fun. I learned how to swim! I'm really good at it now! I can swim for more than 20 minutes! Keep reading! Woof! ~Meli

Meli wants to know what books are on your summer reading list! You can let her know, along with other questions, by sending a letter to Meli c/o The Fountas & Pinnell Literacy™ Team, 361 Hanover St., Portsmouth, NH 03801. And Tweet your questions to @FountasPinnell with #FPAskMeli.

See you soon!

~Meli and 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

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June 26. 2018

Teacher Tip: Selecting Texts for Shared Reading

A key to success in shared reading is the selection of a suitable text. Just about any kind of text can be used for shared reading, provided it is appropriate to the children's experience. The texts used for shared reading should:

  • Be immediately interesting to children.
  • Often have rhyme, rhythm, and repetition.
  • Include a variety of text types, one of them being informational texts.
  • Sometimes be texts that children have helped write.
Shared reading can be done of songs or "raps," poems, chants, and all kinds of stories, including traditional tales with repeating refrains and simple realistic or fantasy stories. Shared reading can also focus on informational texts, either commercially published or produced by children and teachers through interactive writing.

From Teaching for Comprehending and Fluency by Irene C. Fountas and Gay Su Pinnell. Copyright (c) 2006 by Irene C. Fountas and Gay Su Pinnell. Published by Heinemann.