Daily Lit Bit

February 13. 2017

Daily Lit Bit - 2/13/2017

A learner might make tremendous gains in one area while seeming to almost “stand still” in another. It’s our job to provide these learning opportunities and guide their attention so that learning in one area supports learning in others.

February 7. 2017

10 Ways to Make Letter Learning Effective for Struggling Readers: A Teacher Tip from Fountas & Pinnell

You need to make your instruction count when you are helping struggling readers learn how to look at letters. Here is a list of some general suggestions you can use during word study, reading, or writing. Use these ideas every time there is an opportunity.

1. Be sure that letters are clearly printed in black or dark print on white or cream paper.

2. Be sure that readers are at all times able to see the print in word study lessons or in shared or interactive writing.

3. For beginning readers and writers (and children who are having difficulty), select texts with a consistent and clear font.

4. Use a verbal description of letter formation (the "verbal path") to help children learn features of text.

5. Use a variety of ways to draw children's attention to the features of letters.

6. Provide kinesthetic experiences that help children learn directionality and the distinctive features of letters. (colored plastic letters, making letters in sand or salt, sandpaper letters)

7. Use magnetic letters to help children feel letter features as they sort them and build words.

8. Vary the ways children view letters as they read or write them.

9. Emphasize looking at the letters in words from left to right.

10. Create strong references that will help children keep the letter and a key word beginning with the letter in mind. (Alphabet Linking Chart)

Excerpted from When Readers Struggle: Teaching That Works by Irene C. Fountas and Gay Su Pinnell. Copyright (c) by Irene C. Fountas and Gay Su Pinnell. Published by Heinemann.

January 31. 2017

Twelve Tips for Powerful Teaching in Guided Reading Lessons: A Teacher Tip from Fountas & Pinnell

The following are some guiding principles that may help you get more power in your teaching.

  1. Notice the student’s precise reading behaviors.
  2. Eliminate ineffective behaviors and help the reader do what proficient readers do.
  3. Select a text on which the reader can learn how to read better- not too difficult and not too easy.
  4. Teach the reader not the text.
  5. Teach the student to read written language not words.
  6. Teach for the student to initiate effective problem-solving actions.
  7. Use clear precise language that passes the control to the reader. 
  8. Only ask the student to do what you know he can do.
  9. Don’t clutter the teaching with too much talk.
  10. Focus on self-monitoring and self-regulating behaviors so the reader becomes independent.
  11. Build on examples of successful processing.
  12. Teach for fast responding so the reader can process smoothly and efficiently.

For more, check out http://www.fountasandpinnell.com/guidedreading/